March 19 – 30
At Tower City
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Run Time: 77 minutes
The sampaguita is the beautiful and fragrant white flower that stands as a national symbol for the Philippines. Ironically, it is also a symbol of the exploitation and poverty of numerous Filipino children on the streets of the capital Manila. If you've been to the Philippines, you more than likely have witnessed the onslaught of children peddling sampaguita garlands, scattered among the passing pedestrians and motorists. Director Francis X. Pasion sympathetically documents the stories of these children, following them through the streets and recording their own reenactments of their day-to-day experiences, such as harvesting flowers by night, escaping police, and dealing with ailing and abusive parents. Selling necklaces and begging for leftover food by day, they go to sleep exhausted and drained on concrete pavement with blankets of cardboard. At times the pressures of street-life prove too much, forcing the children, particularly the boys, into child prostitution. The film comments not only on the state of these impoverished children, but also on how society accepts this inequity as a part of life. An alarming docu-drama, SAMPAGUITA, NATIONAL FLOWER effectively links the once pure image of the sampaguita with symbols of danger and destitution. (In Filipino and Tagalog with subtitles) – M.M.
Monday, March 28, 2011 at 2:10 PM
Wednesday, March 30, 2011 at 9:50 PM
Francis X. Pasion
Nicolas Duval-Adassovsky, Laurent Zeitoun, Yann Zenou
Olivier Nakache, Éric Toledano
François Cluzet, Omar Sy
Francis X. Pasion is an award-winning filmmaker from Manila, Philippines who directs films about his home country.
"Jay" (2008), SAMPAGUITA, NATIONAL FLOWER (2010)