Opinion

Shoutouts and Whispers: On nosebleeds, criticality, epiphanies, and closing down, finally, the Kris Aquino school of acting

It may be said that writers are predictably the most quotable in the lot. In the era of Facebook, social networking, and online publishing, so much is being said, and in matter of seconds, forgotten.

This section of Kalatas brings you back the most quotable of them all, at least for periods our time would allow us to cover. The sources of our texts would be the virtual world out there, and if necessary, the world of the real, where dialogues and discourses also abound.

To quote is pretty much postmodern, quoting (haha) Fredric Jameson, and we do offer this “review” not as a way to scorn people (though quoting, as an ambiguous speech act may point to something that borders on irony) in a suppossed age of informational exhaustion (read: para lang may mapag-usapan). More so, we would like to continue whatever dialogue or discourse has been brought about by each spotted shoutout, statement, or one-liner (in the tradition of pick-up lines).

We encourage you not only to rant or rave (perhaps through the easy Facebook likes), but to react textually, to lend your voice as we all listen to and relive these shoutouts and whispers (the aural, you see, also strikes back). It may produce something carnevalesque, but hell, yeah, it’s time to write back, instead of being clueless, only murmuring, anyare?

The following quotes were not edited (as most are carefully written down anyway) to assure of a more unmediated engagement. Yes, another word, too, for this section is engagement, and with these quotes, may we witness once again, despite their temporality, the way our writers engaged with themselves, and with the world.

Enjoy. Long live the text!–Eds.

***

On Nosebleed

Nosebleed! The favorite word of contemporary anti-intellectualism. The triumphal expression of those who chose stupidity! The symbol of our age that prefers idiocy to the seeking of knowledge, that would hasten the global mind crumbling into dumbness. Apologies and no-apologies to my friends who like this word, but I say, bring it on! I LOVE YOU, NOSEBLEED! I love anything that will give me epistaxis (that’s the medical term for nosebleed, Nosebleeder!). Because every time my nose bleeds my brain expands! NOSEBLEED! Let’s say it again, NOSEBLEED! The word for the dumbing down of the world! The word of the victim because you probably don’t even know what it means. Or you cannot be bothered. If you fear, or detest, intelligence, knowledge, insight, wisdom, well, you probably can’t even explain to yourself! And it’s your loss not mine. If you want to go down the drain of ignorance, into the Hades of subhuman intelligence, don’t take me with you. And don’t worry about me.

–Marne L. Kilates, via Facebook

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Let’s get critical, critical?

Perhaps it is too much to ask of writers that they wear the critic’s hat once in a while, instead of dismissing criticism as a mere “parasite” of creative writing. It may be too much to ask of critics that they read and write about books with more than their own pet peeves and preoccupations in mind. But the fact remains that books and reviews are locked in a symbiotic relationship. Without the enthusiastic attention of literary critics, poets like Percy Bysshe Shelley and Sylvia Plath would have languished unknown to the general public in a world where there are so many claims on one’s attention and so little time to sit down and think. Writers may draw comfort and support from the company of other writers or declare that they never read reviews of their books (though often a slip of the tongue reveals otherwise) or think their critics unworthy of their genius. But they need critics to tell them what works, or doesn’t, in their writing, to tell them things about their craft and vision that they themselves don’t see or understand. Critics know what it is like to be moved, perhaps even transformed, by a book, and are forever in search of the next great read, one that may help them, and fellow readers, see things anew and rethink their old ways of doing and being in the world.

–Caroline S. Hau, The Manila Review

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Lies and ‘El Presidente’

Mark Meily’s film El Presidente would have viewers believe that Andres Bonifacio, Supremo of the Katipunan, was a traitor who was plotting against the revolutionary government. Naturally the film would take Aguinaldo’s side, being a biopic whose primary source, cited in the credits, is Aguinaldo’s memoirs. Writer-director Meily’s avowed intention is to clear up the misconceptions surrounding this controversial figure. I do not doubt Meily’s sincerity, but I have a problem with his history.

–Jessica Zafra, Interaksyon.com

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‘One More Try’ at an epiphany

the reason one more try succeeds with its intended audience is that its makers determined and made sure that it would. indeed, the conventions of contemporary filipino melodrama are all in evidence here, and calculatedly so: from the bankable and good-looking actors to the posh and lovely locales; from the contrived and unlikely plot (that requires the hyperbolic performances to visibly and audibly swing across gradations of bathos, hysteria, weepiness, and camp) to the foreseeably happy ending (because, let us remember, this is a holiday movie, after all), that offers the viewers an ethical closure if not a piously preordained moral: all’s well that ends well, and indeed, before the closing credits scroll ceremoniously down, we see that the mortally sick child’s life has been heroically rescued, without any harm befalling either of the film’s two vaunted and beautiful relationships (which are proven to be committed and for keeps, after all). this popular narrativity of course answers to a completely different set of requisites and pressures (plausibility or simple logic obviously not being one of them), and if it offers any kind of epiphany at all, it is typically foisted on the viewer, who isn’t quite free to experience or determine it for herself, in the end. and so, yes, every possible insight or sentiment is thickly externalized in this kind of drama, which ironically flattens out its movements and actions, and renders them impervious to complex interpretation…

–J. Neil Garcia, via Facebook

***

Wordwars with Kris Aquino!

“Sisterakas” (Star Cinema and Viva Films) is a shamelessly “money-trip” movie, driven purely by profit. It is ironic that the backdrop of the story of this movie is the fashion world which is supposed to be about class and taste, but this movie is a twisted celebration of poor taste…I have some advice for Ms. Kris Aquino. Now that the economy of our country is doing well under the presidency of her brother, I think it is time for her to perform a sacrifice, a heroic act even, of setting the country free from her incompetence as a movie actor.

–J. I. E. Teodoro, December 31, 2012, GMA News.com

Simple reply, how sad for him because i’m here to stay & will try my best to bug him for many yrs more.

–Kris Aquino, via Twitter

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