MANILA, Philippines - Independent filmmaker Adolf Alix, Jr. shows poverty in a different light in his latest film about a mother and daughter that is set in an unusual abode: the chassis of trucks at the local pier.
"Chassis" is Alix's 2nd film to make the world premiere at the Pusan International Film Festival. This year's festival is slated on October 7-15, 2010.
It will also be shown in Vancouver and Latin America before the year ends.
The film tells the story of a mother who is struggling to send her daughter to school while paying for the other needs of the family. They live in the chassis of container vans at the local pier and since that is illegal, they change locations every year.
"We have people living in uncertain areas in the Philippines and then we have this new sector, these people who live under this situation. These people have adjusted to this new type of lifestyle," Alix said on "[email protected]" on Tuesday.
Not just poverty
Despite the initial premise, Alix shared that "Chassis" is more than just a poverty film.
"Poverty is just an aspect. If you watch the film, there’s more to it. More than poverty, there’s always a story to it more than just the situation," he added.
The film is different from Alix's other films which he shot in the scenic rural countrysides of Donsol, Sorsogon and Batanes. "Chassis" is closer to his movies "Adela" and "Manila" that are set in the gritty locations of the country's capital.
Viewers are not aware that there are families that live in nomadic locations, said Alix. The film shows their lives and the struggles they face in order to survive.
"Films generally reflect what’s happening in a country. In the Philippines, because poverty is the general concern, it’s what we filmmakers have to show--the slice of life people wouldn’t understand," said Alix, whose film "Donsol" was the Philippine entry to the Oscars in 2007.
After the string of premieres internationally, "Chassis" will hopefully be shown in the Philippines.
"In the last 5 years there has been a wave of Filipino films going around so at least we get the feel of different types of films coming from the Philippines. We’re very happy because we’re being recognized internationally for the films that we do but the basic problem is how to get these films to be shown in the Philippines," he said.
This year's Pusan Festival is not Alix's first time on the scene. Two years ago, Alix's "Adela" was also shown in the festival.
"We’re very happy because it's my second time there. Parang it's interesting lang to see how people in Korea will react to a certain milieu in Philippine society," he said.