Two words, Neil Daza.
If you’re not familiar with the name, maybe you’re familiar with his works. ‘Feng Shui’ (2004), ‘Signal Rock’ (2018), ‘Nabubulok’ (2017), ‘Gusto Kita With All My Hypothalamus’ (2018) and Oda sa Wala (2018), these are just some of the most beautifully pictured and framed movies locally.
And these are the works of award-winning cinemtographer Neil Daza.
He had worked with award-winning directors Chito S. Roño, Antoinette Jadaone, Dwein Baltazar, Irene Villamor and Topel Lee but it’s his first time to work with Alvin Yapan in the historical drama movie ‘Culion.’
So, imagine a historical drama movie written by Ricky Lee, photographed by Neil Daza and directed by Alvin Yapan. You get three geniuses to work in one movie.
To get us a feel of what ‘Culion’ will be, here are the first official stills from the movie:
This is as much the story of three women as it is the story of Culion.
In the 1940s, Anna, Doris and Ditas are three leper patients who live in Culion at a time when the disease is practically a life sentence. No cure has yet been found, and no one is allowed to leave. You live and die there. It is why the place is called the Land of the Living Dead.
Anna never loses hope that soon a cure will be found, even when her baby is taken away from her. Doris believes in the myth that a beautiful diwata will soon heal the place. Ditas keeps attempting to kill herself, helpless against the onslaught of memories from the outside world.
Together the three friends try to negotiate a life of stigma that seesaws between hope and despair, redefining their roles as women, mother, friend, and human being. In the end they prove that neither disease nor death can erase their humanity and their capacity to endure.
The film stars Iza Calzado, Jasmine Curtis Smith, Meryll Soriano, Joem Bascon, Mike Liwag, Joel Saracho, Mai Fanglayan, Suzette Ranillo, Erlinda Villalobos, Upeng Fernandez, Lee O’Brian, Nico Locco, Rex Lantano, Jay Garcia, Aaron Concepcion and more. Written by Ricky Lee, cinematography by Neil Daza and directed by Alvin Yapan from iOptions Ventures and Shandii Bacolod’s Team MSB.