Manila in the Claws of Light The Criterion Collection
Criterion Collection, Special Edition
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Lino Brocka broke through to international acclaim with this candid portrait of 1970s Manila, the second film in the director’s turn to more serious-minded filmmaking after building a career on mainstream films he described as “soaps.” A young fisherman from a provincial village arrives in the capital on a quest to track down his girlfriend, who was lured there with the promise of work and hasn’t been heard from since. In the meantime, he takes a low-wage job at a construction site and witnesses life on the streets, where death strikes without warning, corruption and exploitation are commonplace, and protests hint at escalating civil unrest. Mixing visceral, documentary-like realism with the narrative focus of Hollywood noir and melodrama, Manila in the Claws of Light is a howl of anguish from one of the most celebrated figures in Philippine cinema.
BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES
• New 4K digital restoration by the Film Development Council of the Philippines and Cineteca di Bologna/L’Immagine Ritrovata, in association with The Film Foundation’s World Cinema Project, LVN, Cinema Artists Philippines, and cinematographer Mike De Leon, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
• Introduction by filmmaker Martin Scorsese
• Signed: Lino Brocka, a 1987 documentary about the director by Christian Blackwood
• “Manila” . . . A Filipino Film, a 1975 documentary about the making of the film, featuring Brocka and actors Hilda Koronel and Rafael Roco Jr.
• New piece with critic, filmmaker, and festival programmer Tony Rayns
• New English subtitle translation
• PLUS: An essay by film scholar José B. Capino
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The film transfer itself looks wonderful on blu ray and the extras are interesting. Give this film a shot--it's worth your time.