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Lifestyle & Culture

Pinoy Films are Going Digital, and it’s a Good Thing

Pinoy films finding a home online? Good.

The first drive-in cinema in the Philippines was opened to the public last month. This reality points to the fact that for the time being, cinemas remain closed.

From the first month of the enforced lockdowns until now, we have reignited our passion towards Philippine cinema due to its convenience and accessibility. Where are our Pinoy films now, you may ask? Online, of course.

Films have always been a source of entertainment and information for us Filipinos. Aside from film reviews, memes have helped us discover new films to watch over the past months.

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Memes are images, videos, and pieces of text, mostly used for humorous or relatable content in social media. 

Various Pinoy films have been used as memes, catching attention on social media. These posts have been instant invitations to know more about the film and watch them, especially on Netflix.

Found a Home in Digital

Netflix is the runaway go-to streaming platform in the Philippines. It has allowed crowd-favorite Pinoy films such as Four Sisters and a Wedding, Goyo, and Heneral Luna to be accessible whenever and wherever. 

Even award-winning local independent films such as Birdshot and Hintayan ng Langit are on the streaming platform. Because of Netflix’s popularity and availability, Pinoy films are now reaching more audiences.

Aside from Netflix, other streaming sites such as iWant and iFlix have been showcasing Pinoy films, whether independently made or not. These services have become partner platforms to exhibit Philippine cinema.

RELATED: [Ang Babaeng Allergic sa Wi-Fi: A Hidden Gem in Netflix PH]

What’s next?

Pamilya Ordinaryo (2016) and Untrue (2019) are critically-acclaimed films that were added to Netflix’s collection last June. This August, the streaming service will release 15 more Pinoy films, ranging from romantic comedies to fantasy dramas.

The films will be available across Asia, creating a window to discover Philippine cinema, even from the comfort of our homes. This also means our many OFWs in the region will get to watch, too!

Film Development Council of the Philippines Chairperson Liza Diño expressed her excitement towards this initiative.  “We are happy that our local distribution companies are continuously engaging with these international companies to expand their audience,” she said.

In addition, for the first time in Philippine history, the Philippine Independent Film Festival, Cinemalaya, opened digitally, through the platform Vimeo.

As the world battles through this pandemic, the shift to digital is inevitable. It’s comforting to see Philippine cinema adapt and survive.

While we miss walking out of a moviehouse to discuss the recent film we’ve watched, that might not be happening again soon. This is for the best, as we all strive to #StayHome.

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