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Annual Top Films Lists

Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2016: #50. Lav Diaz’s Hele sa Hiwagang Hapis

Hele sa Hiwagang Hapis

Director: Lav Diaz // Writer: Lav Diaz

The most notable auteur out of the Philippines in the last decade is Lav Diaz, whose beautiful films often test audience stamina (his 2008 film Melancholia is seven and a half hours, while 2011’s Century of Birthing is six). Recently, he’s enjoyed a higher profile thanks to 2013’s Norte, or the End of History premiering in Un Certain Regard at Cannes (and snagging US distribution), and then winning Locarno’s Golden Leopard a year later with From What is Before. He’s recently completed his latest, Hele sa Hiwagang Hapis, a film simply described as concerning the search for the body of Andres Bonifacio (a man known as the Father of the Philippine Revoluton).

Cast: John Lloyd Cruz, Piolo Pascual, Hazel Orencio, Alessandra de Rossi

Production Co./Producers: Bianca Balbuena, Epicmedia, TEN17P, Sine Olivia

U.S. Distributor: Rights Available. TBD (domestic) TBD (international).

Release Date: Having premiered at a variety of major film festivals, Diaz has yet to conquer Berlin, but if it doesn’t appear in the line-up there he may be eyeing a return to Cannes.

Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2021: France (Bruno Dumont), Passing (Rebecca Hall) and Nightmare Alley (Guillermo Del Toro). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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