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Martial law documentary '11,103' screened in California

Rommel Conclara | TFC News Redwood City, California

Posted at Sep 29 2022 09:03 AM

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The documentary '11,103' features first-hand accounts of martial law victims and survivors who experienced state-sponsored violence during the time of Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Sr.

The film was released in time to mark the 50th anniversary of his declaration of martial law.

The title also reflects the number of victims that were given compensation as a result of the law that recognized the atrocities committed in that era.

'11,103' was shown at Canada College in Redwood City, California as part of special screenings all over the US.

Following the movie, audience members heard from the filmmakers and some of the featured martial law victims.

"At first we wanted to stay away from people who went underground. We wanted to tell ordinary people's stories like farmers who were picked up, tortured, and even lost their land or livelihood. The problem is that there were people like Ed who were crazy articulate. So we had to strike a balance between the articulate activist and the ordinary people," the film's director Jeanette Ifurung said.

Edicio 'Ed' de la Torre is one of the martial law survivors featured in the film.

He is an artist, activist, and former priest from Mindoro, Philippines.

He said he was imprisoned on trumped-up charges, including conspiracy and rebellion, for his protest actions against human rights violations committed under Marcos Sr.

For De La Torre, even after the People Power Revolution of 1986, which ousted the dictatorship, there are neither clear directions nor lessons learned for Filipinos.

"Many of us from the left or the radical movement after EDSA felt that that was a blip. The revolution must continue. And so very soon rather than carrying the fight for history and understanding the past and creating the future, it was trying to mobilize people who were still open to the resistance mode," he said.

With the election of President Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr. and the widespread false narrative of the martial law era, the filmmakers hope that the real stories of the past can help bring justice to victims and survivors.

"The film is just a starting point so we can reboot the conversation and get more people to share their own martial law stories. Unfortunately with the victory of the son of the dictator, of course there’s that atmosphere of fear," Mike Alcazaren, also the director of the film, noted.

'11,103' can be seen in theaters across the Philippines but more screenings are being considered in the US.