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Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Miss International 2015 Pre-Arrival Hot Picks

         The 55th edition of Miss International will be held on November 5, 2015 at the Hiten Hall of the New Takanawa Grand Prince Hotel in Tokyo, Japan. At least seventy (70) contestants from around the world will compete for the much coveted crown of Miss Internationl 2015. The reigning Miss International 2014 Valerie Hernandez of the Puerto Rico will crown her successor at the end of the event. 
         Meanwhile, before the ladies hit the stage and compete for the title, photos of the contestants surfaced on the web and the pageant fans and pundits including me cannot help but make their own favorites or bets for the crown before their arrival and even before they compete. Here is my own list of pre-arrival favorites for the crown. These ladies, whose timeless and effortless beauty, natural elegance and personality in the pictures captured my attention most. So here goes my early favorites for Miss International 2015!

1. Denmark  - Mette Riis Sørensen 

2. Venezuela - Edymar Martinez 

3. Brazil - Isis Stocco 

4. Philippines - Janicel Lubina 

5. USA - Lindsay Becker 

6. Puerto Rico - Wilmary Moncion 

7. New Zealand - Hayley Robinson 

8. Spain - Christina Silva Cano 


9. Trinidad and Tobago - Avionne Mark 

10. Hawaii - Brianna Acosta 

11. Thailand - Sasi Sintawee 

12. Colombia - Natalia Ochoa 

13. Kenya - Eunice Onyango 

14. Ecuador - Daniela Armijos 

15. Hungary - Linda Szunai



Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Filipino Movies Filmed In Some Philippine Provinces

A scene from the film Kadin (2007) 

Unlike in United States and other developed or advance countries in film making where each of their state, region or province are prominently featured or is a subject of a particular film, only quite a number of Filipino made films has been taken place in some of the provinces of the country even though there's a lot of so many promising places which deserved to be captured in the reel stills and Filipinos yet to discover the facts of each of these places in the country. 

These are just some of the Filipino films shot in location in some of the provinces in the country.

Aklan - Ano Bang Meron Ka (2001)

Cheesy popular movie of 2000s set in the popular Boracay Islands tells the story of two unlikely pair: a high lifestyle party-going writer and events organizer meets a laidback, unassuming bar owner who is committed to his girlfriend yet very willing to have a one night stand with this rowdy woman.

Albay - Kailangan Kita (2002)

Another lovelorn story of unrequited romance against the background of the scenic Mayon volcano and the very beautiful province of Albay. It is the story of an expat who was born in the Philippines and having lived most of his life in the United States return to the Philippines to marry his fiancee model but instead fell in love with his future sister in law. 

Antique - Boso (2005)

Sneaky peeping tom caretaker of a boarding house witness a whole array of characters - a pious born again Christian couple addicted in porn movies, a nymphet disguises as a shy school girl, a virgin discovering her lustful dereliction. The story is typical of people living in the chaotic urban areas yet some scenes were taken in this quiet province in Western Visayas.

Aurora - Baler (2008)

This small town was the last stronghold of the Spanish empire in the country and was defended by the Spanish soldiers for 337 long grueling days against Filipino revolutionary forces known as the Siege of Baler.

Bataan - El Presidente (2012)

Historical film about the first President of the Philippines proclamation of Philippine Independence from Spain, creation of the First Republic and armed struggle against American forces before surrendering and accepting the new colonial power on his young nation highlighting the colorful beauty of Bataan. 

Batanes - Kadin (2007)

It is a poignant yet melancholy dreamy journey of young siblings in search of their lost goat. They traverse the breath taking epic vast land of Sabtang off the coast of Batanes to find their family's source of livelihood. Innocent yet charming portrayal of the Ivatans and the way they live their lives.

Batangas - Sa Pusod Ng Dagat (2008)

Subtitled In The Navel of the Sea, Sa Pusod Ng Dagat is a story of a young man named Pepito should assume the role of her mother Rosa who is a midwife and is the only one who can deliver babies in their remote coastal community after the later committed suicide for being pregnant despite the fact she is a widow to protect her son. The place is reminiscent of the beautiful coastal areas of Batangas known to be an ideal diving spots in the country. 

Benguet - Kung Mangarap Ka't Magising (1977)

The cool climate, lovely pine trees and awesome nature of Baguio is prominently featured in this film touted as the most romantic Filipino film ever about star-crossed lovers - a college student and a woman who is unhappily married to her ever busy husband. The chilly temperature contrasts the warmth of this movie particularly the love of the central characters. 

Bohol - Panaghoy Sa Suba (2004)

Subtitled Call of the River, this melodramatic 2004 period film about simple life of a family in a small province working for an abusive and stingy American businessman and wealthy landowner who is in love with the daughter of one of his workers. It follows the lives of the people near the river which is the main tributary which traverse through the whole town before, during and after World War II.

Bukidnon - Bagong Buwan (2001)

Armed struggles based on ideology and religion impacting the lives of the minority families of the south Mindanao and that of a decent, dignified Ahmad and how will it resolve the conflicts between clashes as the end to justify the means while also maintaining the peace in their homeland of the southern Philippine province of Bukidnon with a vast tract of land for farming and plantation of pineapples and other crops. 

Bulacan - Ikaw Lang (1993)

A woman survived a terrifying ordeal from her psychotically abusive husband and mother-in-law after they dumped her into the river thinking they've killed her but miraculously saved by a fisherman. Desperate of help to take revenge on her husband and gain custody of her child, she hooks up with a robber with whom she fell in love with. She returns to the creepy house and killed her and gain back her child.  

Cagayan - The Mistress (2012)

The province with a hot climate blessed with rugged terrains, cavernous dwellings, sweeping coasts and nausea inducing cliff fuels the passion of  an adventurous man who begins a doomed relationship with a woman who is committed to an older partner.

Camarines Norte - Salome (1981)

A beautiful film set in the paradise Bicol region most specifically in the sun kissed province of Camarines Norte. Salome (1981) is a nymph with an unusually strong seductive power who lured a visiting mining engineer and killed him. Contrasting version of truths told to shed light to the murder and some beautiful shots of nature owe its gratitude to Akira Kurosawa 1950 classic Rashomon. 

Camarines Sur - Tell Nora I Love Her (1970)

A candy sweet love story of the popular love team at the time Nora Aunor and Pip Tirso Cruz III set at the beautiful province of Camarines Sur in superstar's Bicol region. 

Cavite - Rome & Juliet (2006)

The very busy industrial province of Cavite sets the backdrop of this pink film. Rome and Juliet (2006) follows the romantic journey and soul mating of two women caught in a web of forbidden love. Two women -- the bride and her wedding planner -- become enmeshed in a lesbian affair as they make preparations for the event.

Cebu - Dance of the Steel Bars (2013)

The film that was inspired by the actual events in this province features the struggles and conditions of jail inmates and how they regain themselves and feel decent enough to be human by being dancing inmates or prisoners that gained worldwide fame and attention after their viral video became a worldwide phenomenon and was prominently featured in several international media companies and Time magazine.

Cotabato - Ang Tanging Pamilya: A Marry Go-Round (2009)

A screwball and goofball of some sorts is this film partly shot in General Santos City where Dionisia Pacquiao, the mother of boxing sensation Manny Pacquiao spent most of her life and raucous of events featuring prominent celebrities including former President Joseph Estrada.  A young lady accepts the marriage proposal of her long distance boyfriend only to have feuding families between them soon thereafter. 

Davao del Norte - Isang Tanong Isang Sagot (1997)

The story of a boss who fell in love with his servant's daughter and in a sudden twist of event later, the boss became a servant to prove his love to this young woman. The backdrop is large banana plantation in Davao del Norte. 

Ifugao - Mumbaki (1996)

The epic beauty of the hinterlands in the rugged mountain ranges of the up north never failed to mesmerized us in some of the Filipino films and this film is no exception. An Ifugao chieftain son who happens to be a doctor is called to return home upon the death of his father and assume the his role as a Mumbaki or as a chanter but later must make a choice of leaving the country with his fiance or staying behind to be with his people. 

Ilocos Norte - Temptation Island (1980)

Five women and five men were stranded in an isolated deserted island in the northwest Ilocos Norte and their lives intertwine after that and should make decisions to survive in this 1980 sexy funny film by Joey Gosiengfiao.

Ilocos Sur - Sawa Sa Lumang Simboryo (1952)

The very best of Ilocos Sur is featured in this film subtitled Python at the Old Dome. The story is about the bandit named Tulume and his snake in the cave where he is hiding his treasures looted from every people in a town together with his followers. After taken all the treasures he got he went to a cave to keep his treasure and talk to his pet snake named Lingkis to guard the treasure and kill anybody who will get inside the cave attempting to get the treasures. One of Tulume's men went inside the cave and have a plan to get all the treasures but unknown to him, Lingkis is ready to kill him. This film is FAMAS (Filipino Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences) first Best Picture in 1953. 

Iloilo - Ang Pinakamagandang Hayop Sa Balat Ng Lupa (1974)

Filmed in the famed paradise island of Sicogon in northern Iloilo which is very popular tourist destination at that time before Boracay rose to fame in the 1980s, Ang Pinakamagandang Hayop sa Balat ng Lupa (1974) with a subtitle The Most Beautiful Animal in the World features Miss Universe 1969 Gloria Diaz as the mysterious beautiful woman temptress who came to a quiet coastal community who brought changes in the lives of the people and ultimately their destruction.  

Isabela - Ayos na... ang kasunod (2000)

The vast sweeping beauty of this province is vividly depicted in Ayos na...ang kasunod (2000) about two unlikely individual who crossed path on a twist of event - a truck driver and a kitchenette business owner with her able bodied brother guarding and protecting her. 

La Union - Sutla (1999)

The film could have given more decent portrayal of this province known for its fine sand beaches with this low budget poorly acted sexy film Sutla (1999) 

Laguna - Magnifico (2003)

The poignantly warm and youthful charm of this film was visible in portrayal of the balmy Laguna province released in 2003. A story of a young boy who is making a coffin for his ill grandmother while trying to raise fund to buy her sister a wheelchair.  

Lanao del Norte - Huk Sa Bagong Pamumuhay (1953)

Huk In New Life in English, this 1953 film is about the lives and times of the rebel group and how they adjust and accept the transition after World War II ends surrendering to the government forces and starting a new life in Mindanao. This is only one of the few films that showcase the best of Lanao del Norte. 

Mountain Province - Don't Give Up On Us (2006)

When her best friend fails to show up in a bridal shower weeks before her wedding, a frenzied Abby vows to find her so the wedding would still happen on schedule. Relying only on the cassette tape that belongs to her friend, Abby follows the clues all the way to the Mountain Province where she meets Vince the folk singer whose voice can be heard on the recording but claims to know nothing of her best friend. 

Negros Occidental - Oro Plata Mata (1982)

This legendary epic film about the rise and fall of the powerful landlords and how they struggle and cope up during the dark years of the war, its atrocities and effects on them is a powerful depiction of evil a human can do. There is no better film that portrays the sugar capital of the Philippines in celluloid than this one which is ideal to the nature of the occupation and livelihood of the characters in the film. Hang on for a three hour long epic.

Nueva Ecija - Karnal (1983)

Subtitled Of The Flesh is this straightforward 1983 film tackling the beauty and ugliness of human beings and challenging the morals of morality and social hypocrisy. It is dawning of the life of a prodigal son after he went home to their hometown from Manila with his wife - the ordeal he and his wife underwent and life thereafter as told by her daughter Doray. Another film that effectively portray the once Rice Granary of the Philippines

Nueva Vizcaya - Nakaw Na Sandali (2004)

How sad is the state of the Filipino film at the turn of a new millennium because people are no longer patronizing good quality films in the theater and cinema because it's expensive for them and instantly replaced by the pirated cd tapes at the advent of the rise of vcd and dvd recorders much to the loss of local film industry that only produces soft core porn films which in turn shoots in locations in less known provinces and places in the Philippines which should have been patronized and depicted in quality mainstream films and this one fell prey to this. 

Occidental Mindoro - Parola (1949)

Set against the bleak loneliness of the only lighthouse in the island, Parola (1949) is the story of a man and his daughters and sister who abandon city life and settles in a quiet island to ease the pain and hatred caused by his wife's infidelity. Occidental Mindoro is never portrayed so blissfully perfect like this film.

Oriental Mindoro - Dyesebel (1978)

Oriental Mindoro is the ideal location of this 1978 version of a mermaid named Dyesebel played by sexy siren Alma Moreno. A ruby like stone turns her fish tail into a human leg.

Palawan - Lihim (1997)

A psychopath murders a group of teenager vacationing in a remote isolated island and the identity of the killer must be revealed before all of them will be doomed. The paradise island province of Palawan offers a calming relaxation and respite to everyone and is harmless in stark contrast to the creepy island shown in the film.

Pampanga - Kaleldo (2006)

The religious practices during Holy Week which is a unique tradition in a Pampanga town is shown in the film about the lives of a man and his daughter during the course of seven summers and their relationship with the people after the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. 

Pangasinan - Butil Ulan; Subtitle: Naked Island (1984)

Pangasinan's beauty is featured in this 1984 film 

Quezon - Miguel/Michelle (1998)

A man named Miguel left his country Philippine for United States and years later went home as a woman named Michelle and decided to stay until his family decided to accept her. The evolving beauty of this eastern Luzon province facing the Pacific Ocean is perfect fit for this movie about the transgender issues.  

Rizal - The Road (2011)

The eerily silent beauty of this province is highlighted in this suspense horror movie about the reopening of the 12-year old case when three teens gone missing in an abandoned road but along the course of the investigation, deep cold and gruesome abductions and murders were uncovered and after more than two decades the secret of the road is finally revealed and the ghost lurking in the dark, desolated pathway is out to make sure no leaves alive.  

Romblon - Teteng Baliw (2002) 

The crazily beautiful island province would have been the reason for this film location about a frustrated and desperate man gone mad killing people avenging for his break up with his girlfriend. 

Although Teteng (Rey Dann) lives a normal life, his family is infamous for being crazy. So when his girlfriend (Allona Amor) discovers the truth behind his family’s background, she decides to call it quits and break up with him.

Desperate and frustrated, Teteng becomes a crazed man; killing people thinking this will avenge himself.

Siquijor - Siquijor: Mystic Island (2007)

The movie brings out the dark undertones of the mystic island of Siquijor formerly known as Isla del Fuego or Island of Fire. 

It's shady reputation of black magic, witchcraft and sorcery is the idea of a show's creator to find creepy stories for a big television network show on a prime time slot belying the beauty of this island. 

Sorsogon - Donsol (2006) 

Another love story of two lonely people met during a whale shark watching session in this lovely province teeming with diverse marine life and an active volcano.

Sulu - Brides of Sulu (1937)

A classic pre-war film about love, royalty, warring family and clans and history in this still very peaceful exotic southwestern Philippine island of Sulu.

Tarlac - You and Me Against The World (2003)

The way of life and the landscape is featured in this action - romance movie from 2003. Watch the movie and judge for yourself.  

Tawi-Tawi - Thy Womb (2012)

There is more to life than just colorful pageantry, costumes, rich tradition and history in this southernmost province of the Philippines. 

An ethnic Badjao tribe woman who acts as a midwife copes up with her own infertility as she helps women in her community. 

Zambales - Asin at Paminta (1999) 

Zamboanga del Norte - Rizal sa Dapitan (1997)

The national hero Dr. Jose Rizal spent almost four years nurturing the young minds of this sleepy Spanish town and contributing much to the progress of this town and province as well as improving the lives of its citizens helping a lot of sick people, owning vast tract of lands and even made contributions in science by some of his studies in this Mindanao province from 1892 - 1896. 

Zamboanga del Sur - Zamboanga (1937)

The classic silent pre-war film is available in Youtube and one can see the prestige and breath taking beauty of this province which is the last existing Spanish speaking province in the country along with Zamboanga del Norte.


Kabayan Central

Sunday, August 2, 2015

PHILIPPINES' Most Beautiful City Halls Rank 1 - 34

They say the potential and future prospect of a place depends upon its first impression on its local government and what's better way to find out how good is their government is to check how beautiful their city hall is welcoming everyone from its constituents who come and go in the city halls for their usual transactions or travelers who wants to visit the place but first wants to seek some help or guide from the local government or acquire some tips or ideas of what the place has to offer. 

Philippines' Most Beautiful City Halls is a follow up to the previous articles about the Philippines' Most Beautiful Provincial Capitols (check out the previous articles HERE). 

Out of 142 cities in the Philippines, I named 67 city halls arguably beautiful and worth visiting and deemed worthy to be in the list and they are the following: 

New Tagum City Hall 

Tagum City Hall Perspective 

1. City: Tagum 
Province: Davao Del Norte 

2. City: Cotabato 
Province: Cotabato 

3. City: Dapitan 
Province: Zamboanga del Norte 

4. City: Makati 
Area: Metro Manila 

5. City: Bacolod 
Province: Negros Occidental 

6. City: Koronadal 
Province: South Cotabato 

7. City: Danao 
Province: Cebu 

8. City: San Pedro 
Province: Laguna 

9. City: San Juan 
Area: Metro Manila 

10. City: Tabuk 
Province: Kalinga 

11. City: Calamba 
Province: Laguna 

Old Iloilo City Hall now part of University of the Philippines Visayas

12. City: Iloilo 
Province: Iloilo 

13: City: Sagay 
Province: Negros Occidental 

14. City: Mati 
Province: Davao Oriental 

15. City: Sipalay 
Province: Negros Occidental 

16. City: San Fernando 
Province: Pampanga 

17. City: Mabalacat 
Province: Pampanga 

18. City: Valenzuela 
Area: Metro Manila 

19. City: Escalante 
Province: Negros Occidental

20: City: Butuan 
Province: Agusan del Norte 

21. City: Bayugan 
Province: Agusan del Sur 

22. City: Urdaneta 
Province: Pangasinan 

23. City: Puerto Princesa 
Province: Palawan 

24. City: Quezon 
Area: Metro Manila 

25. City: Zamboanga 
Province: Zamboanga del Sur 

26. City: Las Piñas 
Area: Metro Manila 

27. City: Calapan 
Province: Oriental Mindoro 

28. City: Tacloban 
Province: Leyte 

29. City: Tuguegarao 
Province: Cagayan 

30. City: Carcar 
Province: Cebu 

31. City: Pagadian 
Province: Zamboanga del Sur 

32. City: Ormoc 
Province: Leyte 

33. City: Tabaco 
Province: Albay 

34. City: Tacurong 
Province: Sultan Kudarat