Ma' Rosa Ma' Rosa

Brillante Mendoza / Philippines / 2016 / 110 min / Filipino, Tagalog

The master of cinematic verismo, Filipino Brillante Mendoza, tackles the subject of his country’s ubiquitous corruption. Cannes 2016 Best Actress Award.

Ma’ Rosa has four children. She owns a small convenience store in a poor neighbourhood of Manila where everybody likes her. To make ends meet, Rosa and her husband, Nestor, resell small amounts of narcotics on the side. One day, they get arrested, defenceless against the unruly policemen extorting a payout. Rosa’s children are ready to do anything to buy their parents’ freedom from the corrupt police.

"The idea of this film came up four years ago when I became indirectly involved with the said incident. It captured my interest to tell this story because it showed a unique but also disturbing characteristic of a common Filipino family. When a member of your family is backed against the wall for the wrongdoings that he or she has made, will you be ready to do anything to keep your family out of trouble, even if it means violating basic virtues? In a society in which survival of the fittest is a fact that we have to live with, family becomes amoral." (Brillante Mendoza)

Brillante Mendoza
Born in 1960 in San Fernando, the Philippines. A fine arts major, he studied advertising at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila. He started his career as a production designer in feature films, television, theatre and eventually in television advertising. His first feature film won a Golden Leopard Award at the Locarno Film Festival, and The Execution of P, which won the award for Best Director at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, earned him widespread acclaim.

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