Brillante opens “Thy Womb” in city

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Thursday, January 31, 2013


ANOTHER independent movie bound to showcase the unique co–existence of culture and Christianity along with a societal problem in a community can now be viewed in the city.

Independent movie director Brillante Mendoza had just visited Baguio City last Jan. 25 where he launched his latest award winning movie “Thy Womb” at SM.

He explained the movie shows a childless couple, with a middle–aged woman Shaleha Sarail (played by superstar Nora Aunor), a local midwife in Tawi–Tawi, who cannot bear a child.

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The protagonist had been doing several procedures and remedies just to bear a child but it ended futile. The last remedy Shaleha thought is to search for a suitable woman who will give them (with her husband Bangasan) a child. She asked her husband to marry any woman who will be suitable to bear a child as multi – marrying is accepted as part of their culture.

They met a girl named Mersila who is also highly favored by the people in Tawi–Tawi. Mendoza revealed the climax of the story is when Bangasan had to leave Shaleha as soon as Mersila gives birth to his son because it is part of the marriage dowry between Bangasan and Mersila.

Mendoza said he was inspired to make the movie when he visited Tawi–Tawi. He shared he did community immersion and discovered the unique culture of the tribe Badjao. Among the other tribes in the place are Maranao, Maguindanao, and Tausug.

The director further stated the culture and the Christianity co – exist and there are no issues that haunt the two sectors as contrary to what the general public knows about Mindanao areas.

“Our first impression generally if we talk about Mindanao is that it is a battle ground, but it’s not. We were welcome there warmly and we saw the unique culture of the place which made me thought of making a film about them,” Mendoza said.

He further stated, “As a Filipino and a film maker, I am proud of our culture. So I thought of showcasing it through a movie. I wanted to share the culture of the Badjao to our fellow Filipinos. You will be proud if you will see your values, cultures and the scenic beauty of the place in a movie”.

Aunor’s husband is played by Bembol Roco. “We chose Nora because the story would be more realistic and painful if the protagonist would be in the middle age. We have doubts though if Nora will accept the project because it will be taken in Mindanao but to our surprise, she accepted it willingly.”

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on January 31, 2013.

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