‘Old Times’ wins big at 2023 Mga Kwento ng Klima Short Films, powered by Samsung

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Chaela Tordillo’s drama film tackling sea level rise and land subsidence bested nine other finalists and was hailed as the Best Film of the ‘Mga Kwento ng Klima (MKK) Short Films 2023, powered by Samsung’.

The filmmaker will receive a grand prize of Php 50,000 and Php 130,000 worth of Samsung products, including the Galaxy S23 Ultra, as announced during the competition’s film showing and awarding ceremony held at Cinema 1 of Powerplant Mall in Makati.

A project of the Oscar M. Lopez (OML) Center, the MKK Short Films is a competition that aims to capture the unique Filipino experience of climate change and convey the need for urgent climate action through short films produced using mobile phones. 

Of the 45 story pitches received for the MKK Short Films 2023, 15 production teams were selected to undergo the Climate Film Labs where they had a chance to be mentored by film and science mentors. The top 10 of the produced films were shown at the cinema before an audience of climate change advocates, communicators, educators, and experts.

Old Times follows the story of a retired fisherman, played by Filipino stage actor Bodjie Pascua, who returns to his flooded and sinking hometown in Bulacan. He visits the house he used to live in with his teenage grandson, reminisces about his life in the once bustling community, and pays his respects to a dear friend who died because of a supertyphoon.

Meanwhile, dystopian futuristic film Alien by Ciete Cinco Creatives won Second Place and bagged a cash prize of Php 30,000, and up to Php 30,000 worth of Samsung products. Alien is about a young man who journeys to the boundary wall between his barren hometown and neo-Metro Manila. The film portrays a harsh world impacted by drought and sea level rise, two (2) slow-onset events influenced by the changing climate.

The competition’s Third Place went to Tumba Balay by Alfa Productions, a heartwarming drama that follows nine-year-old Typhoon Odette victim Ron-Ron and his friends in Sipalay City, Negros Occidental. In the midst of play, each game triggers powerful flashbacks of Typhoon Odette, revealing the struggles and resilience of Ron-Ron’s family and community during and after the catastrophe. The film also sheds light on the psychological impacts of extreme weather events on children. The film received Php 20,000 and Php 11,000 worth of Samsung products.

The MKK Shorts 2023 jury also gave Special Jury Awards to Uwan Init by Bulalakaw Productions for Cinematic Lens and Fish be With You?! by Underwater Playground for Climate Lens. Each production team received Php 20,000.

Aside from Samsung Philippines, the MKK Shorts competition was supported by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP). The MKK Shorts 2023 jury was composed of OML Center’s Executive Director, Dr. Rodel D. Lasco; Department of Environment and Natural Resources Undersecretary Dr. Carlos Primo C. David; NCCA Vice Head for National Committee on Cinema, Mr. Butch Ibañez; FDCP Education Division Manager, Ms. Rica Arevalo; UP Institute of Environmental Science and Meteorology associate professor Dr. Rafaela Jane Delfino; and Samsung Philippines’ Marketing Communications Manager, Dominic Nacorda.

The remaining five films–Airconditional by Studio/Room 102, Ang Mag-uuma by Dalumat Film Production, Bata, Bata, Alam Mo Ba? by Sinag Productions, Roasted Chicken by Roland Cartagena, and Scavenger’s Hunt by Noob Concepts Inc.–received consolation prizes of Php 10,000 each.

Fish be With You?! took home an additional Php 10,000 for winning the Audience Choice Award.

The trailers of all ten films are now available on the OML Center’s YouTube channel: https://bit.ly/MKKShorts2023Trailers, and full films will soon be available to stream for free on iWant TFC, the official media partner for MKK Shorts 2023.

The MKK Short Films is part of the Center’s Balangay Project, and follows the legacy of the Center and ABS-CBN DocuCentral’s 60-minute documentary “Mga Kwento ng Klima,” which was produced in 2019.

Know more about the Mga Kwento ng Klima Short Films project by visiting the OML Center website at https://www.omlopezcenter.org/balangay-film-mkk-short-films-page/.

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