Director Benito Bautista (The Gift of Barong, SDAFF ‘06) refashions true stories of Manila’s taxi cab drivers into an ominous, unpredictable ride from the dark streets of Manila to the isolated hills of Antipolo.
It’s only a few days before Christmas in Manila and struggling cab driver Limuel needs to reach his boundary (quota of customers) by the end of the night. He picks up a wealthy-looking, generous business man trying to make his way to Antipolo. But Limuel has a plan for his naïve and unsuspecting customer – a plan that he is none too proud to carry out. Things suddenly go beyond Limuel’s control as he himself is thrown from the wheel to the helpless backseat of a plot bigger than he ever expected.
Power. Deception. Morality. Desperation. The intrinsic human conflict of navigating the fine line between power and ethics can have unforeseen consequences when one starts to get too close to either side. Bautista artfully finesses these concepts while commenting on the grim issues of class and political strife that Filipinos are all too familiar with. In this claustrophobic taxi ride through the gritty streets of Manila, it is hard not to feel the tension, fear, and uncertainty these characters experience, and suddenly we’re fellow captives strewn along the captivation plot.
–Written by Maryanne Bilbao, San Diego Asian Film Festival
Director/Writer: Benito Bautista
Co-Writer: John Bedia
Producers: Benito Bautista & Emma Francisco
Director of Photography: Mccoy Tarnate
Musical Composers: Coke Bolipata and Paolo Peralta
Production Designer: Theresa Tang
Editor: Chuck Gutierrez
Sound Design: Raffy Magsaysay
Casting Director: Emma Francisco
Cast: Ronnie Lazaro, Raymond Bagatsing, Edwin Nombre, Angelo Fajardo, Marvin Castillano
Festivals & Awards:
Grand Jury Award for Best Film – Guam International Film Festival, 2012
Nominated: Best Feature Narrative and Audience Award – San Diego Asian Film Festival, 2012
Nominations: Best Film, Best Director, Best Actors (Ronnie Lazaro and Raymond Bagatsing), Best Sound – 35th Gawad Urian Awards, Manila, Philippines, 2012
Official Selection: Chicago Filipino American Film Festival, 2012
Official Selection and Special Mention: XIV International Festival of Detective Films, Moscow, 2012
Best Film – NETPAC Award (Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema), Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival, 2011.
Special Mention Award under the Southeast Asian Films Category – Cinemanila International Film Festival, 2011.