Laurence Marvin S. Castillo
University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
In this presentation, I look into the aesthetic and political regimes that underpin the notable figuring of Catholicism in contemporary Philippine political cinema. I particularly locate the visual and narrative deployment of Catholic spirituality in the filmic construction of what I refer to as the revolutionary imagination, which refers to creative figurations of the ongoing communist revolutionary struggle in the Philippines that embodies certain experiences, practices and vision of this unfinished political project. Here, I explore the ways in which historical films that depict narratives of communist radicalisation under the dictatorship of former President Ferdinand Marcos (1972-1986) such as Aparisyon (Apparition, 2012) and Barber’s Tales (2014) trace the affective and discursive intimacies between radical political action, and Catholic spirituality in the Philippines. Moreover, I analyse the narrative and visual strategies that the filmmakers employ to communicate particular ways of comprehending the political dynamics of faith, and the spiritual dimensions of political action.