Watching Rizal

Noli Me Tangere

Back as a child before the Internet during Independence Day, the Death Anniversary and Birthday of Jose Rizal they used to show movies adapted from the works and life of Jose Rizal – The National Hero of the Philippines. In fact the Rizal was a favorite subject of films – from the first silent films to the big budgeted and even independent films all of them had Rizal.

Noli Me Tangere

If one were to ask a Filipino what his favorite Rizal film would be, one would probably get several answers. Depending of course on the viewpoint, belief and knowledge of the Filipino. Personally as far as film goes I tend to like the works of Gerardo de Leon and Mike de Leon. Three films all in all. Noli Me Tangere (1961), El Filibusterisimo and Bayaning Third World. The first two films done by Gerry de Leon and the last one made by Mike de Leon. All films done in black and white.

El Filibusterisimo

Bayaning Third World is the youngest of the three and the only one of the three that deals with Rizal. The other film that did this was Marie Lou Diaz Abaya’s Rizal. The different between the two was Abaya’s film was more reverent to Rizal to the point approaching veneration whereas de Leon’s work is iconoclastic – it dares to questions and it dares to be witty. It takes on the controversial aspect of Rizal from Josephine Bracken to the retraction. And luckily it is available on DVD and VCD,

The films Noli and Fili are worth watching because of De Leon’s visual style of storytelling that embellishes the scene with emotions. The fact that it was done in Black and White only heightens the visual impact. Another reason it is worth watching is that there are only a limited copies of the films – Noli was restored in Germany while Fili seems to have disappeared into the past with only bits and pieces surfacing from time to time. And that is why when one or both of the films are shown it is worthwhile to watch it.

And this leads me to the nationwide screening schedule of the 1961 adaptation of Jose Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere by Gerry de Leon. Something made possible by the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Goethe Institut, SM Group of Companies, the Cultural Center of the Philippines, Bayanihan Arriva Productions and My Rizal,

Note: Schedules are subject to change. In case of change, please see

16 and 17 June 2011, 9:00 AM – 12:00 NN
SM Bacolod
SM Davao
SM Cebu
SM Iloilo
SM Cagayan de Oro

16 to 19 June 2011. 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM
SM Sta. Rosa
SM Calamba
SM San Pablo
SM Muntinlupa

19 and 20 June 2011, 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM
SM Baguio
SM Rosales
SM Tarlac
SM Clark
SM Pampanga
SM North Edsa
SM City Fairview
SM Megamall
The Podium

20 and 21 June 2011, 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM
SM Lipa
SM Batangas
SM Naga
SM Lucena
SM Dasmariñas
SM Bacoor
SM Rosario
SM Molino

Formal Screening (By invitation only), 20 June 2011
11:00 AM
SM Mall of Asia

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One Response to Watching Rizal

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