Who is the Father of Philippine Independent Film?

father of philippine independent film
Father of Philippine Independent Film | Lahi

The father of Philippine independent film is Kidlat Tahimik. Kidlat Tahimik is a Philippine National Artist for Film.

His real name is Eric de Guia.

Erik de Guia or Kidlat Tahimik made his mark in international cinema with films that ingeniously critique globalization, colonialism, and the huge gap between the rich and the poor, among many other issues of inequality.

His directorial debut came in the critically acclaimed Perfumed Nightmare, for which he was also the writer and lead director.

Kidlat Tahimik has continually invented himself through his cinema, and so his cinema is as singular as the man. His debut film, Mababangong Bangungot (1977), was praised by critics and filmmakers from Europe, North America, Asia, and Africa and is still considered by many as a pioneering postcolonial essay film. Tahimik’s intense independence as an artist and, at the same time, the film itself called for Filipinos to actively live out their independence and not allow their culture to be imperialized by the west. Kidlat’s “imperfect” film is an exemplar of what is worldwide known as “Third Cinema,” a cinema that is critical of neocolonial exploitation and state oppression. But, unlike other Third Cinema films, Kidlat’s work does not glory in ugliness. His films, even those that lament injustice and violence, are premised on the hope of possible, though yet unrealized, triumph. His constant claim is that whatever “progress” has relegated to the realm of sadness and poverty should never remain self-referentially sad or poor.