Shot in stark black-and-white in the immediate wake of Super Typhoon Durian, which caused widespread destruction in the Philippines in 2006, Diaz’s eighth feature is an engrossing account of several people responding to the aftermath as they navigate the ravaged Bicol region. Benjamin Agustan (Roeder Camanag), a leftist poet, returns to his home village after years of exile in Russia to mourn the loss of loved ones and to connect with old friends. Diaz situates his fully imagined characters in a devastated landscape that he has likened to Pompeii, and throughout poses questions from off-camera to actual residents of the area. Combining documentary and fiction, as well as the concrete and the cosmic, this is one of Diaz’s most powerful films, a profound meditation on loss and survival. Winner of a jury prize at the 2007 Venice Film Festival. Courtesy of the Austrian Film Museum.
There will be a 30-minute intermission.