Act One films

‘Monica’s Wish’: Exiled from my own land
‘Monica’s Wish’: Exiled from my own land
Act One presents 'Monica's Wish,' a sobering look at the quality of life in indigenous Aeta communities cast off to the very fringes of society

In Jay-vee Marasigan Pangan’s documentary, Monica’s Wish, the eponymous young girl asserts: “They have to leave… because this is our land.”

Monica is part of the Aeta community in Sitio Haduan, a secluded upland expanse in the outskirts of Mabalacat City, Pampanga. Without regular transport to and fro, her community lives in meager means and relies on a creek from which they get water. But, when a water park barricades entry to the creek, Monica realizes the gravity of their circumstance.

Depicting the adverse effects of over-development and gentrification, Monica’s Wish shows an indigenous community yet again exiled from their homeland.

The short documentary is a film by Project Kaluguran, an Angeles City-based community organization recognized by TAYO (Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations) in 2017. Check out Project Kaluguran’s projects and efforts on their Facebook Page.

The film is produced in cooperation with PhilRights, an NGO focused on “ushering in a society where each individual is able to fully realize one’s potential as a human person.”

To support PhilRights’ efforts, you can get a free copy of their comics and poster, #ParaSaBata, by visiting this link.

Monica’s Wish is directed by Jay-Vee Marasigan Pangan, a teacher, former student-journalist, and founder of Project Kaluguran.

For more Filipino short films, watch Si Astri maka si Tambulah and Dance For Life on Act One.

Act One is Rappler’s platform for Filipino short films, empowering filmmakers and advancing causes. A new title comes out every month. Subscribe and watch on Rappler’s YouTube page.

As in any story, Act One marks the beginning.

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