Aug 13, 2020

Since it was established in 2011, the ABS-CBN Film Restoration Project has been home to 3,000 films in various formats. Through a labor-intensive process of frame-by-frame digital restoration and sound remastering, the unit was able to digitize over a hundred titles from the 1970s to the early 2000s.

Some of the notable films that have been restored by Sagip Pelikula include Peque Gallaga’s “Oro, Plata, Mata” and Ishmael Bernal’s “Himala” from 1982, Mario O’Hara’s 1976 film “Tatlong Taong Walang Diyos” and Laurice Guillen’s 2000 film “Tanging Yaman.”

Despite its contributions to our cinematic heritage, however, the film restoration unit was one of the first casualties following Congress’ rejection of ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal. Before it closes its doors on Aug. 31, they are currently working on restoring 10 more films.

[READ: No rescue for the rescuers: ABS-CBN’s film restoration unit shuts down]

To honor the work that ABS-CBN’s film restoration team has put into restoring a number of significant films from their archives, we’ve put together a list of movies that we think people should watch. This list includes period films that discuss issues that remain relevant today, as well as comedy and romantic movies that made a mark on local pop culture and showcased our local actors’ talents. 

 

Malvarosa (1958)

Available for streaming on Vimeo

Based on a comic serial written by Clodualdo del Mundo, the film tells the story of a poverty-stricken family living near the railroad tracks. “Malvarosa” follows the misfortunes that Rosa and her four older brothers encounter as they struggle to make ends meet.

The film’s restoration was completed in 2019 and screened as part of the QCinema International Film Festival.

 

Biyaya ng Lupa (1959)

Available for streaming on Vimeo

Based on a story by novelist and scriptwriter Celso Al. Carunungan, “Biyaya ng Lupa” follows Maria and Jose, a young married couple who start a life and family together in the countryside. They begin to face tragedies when Jose makes an enemy of Bruno, a widower rumored to have killed his wife.

The film was an entry in the 10th Berlin International Film Festival and screened at the 1960 Asian Film Festival. Restoration of the film was completed in 2019.

 

Minsa’y Isang Gamu-gamo (1976)

Available for streaming on iTunes and TFC

Restored MINSA'Y ISANG GAMU-GAMO Full Trailer

"Sila lang po ba ang tao? Anong tingin nila sa atin?" – Nora Aunor as Corazon de la CruzCatch the digitally restored MINSA'Y ISANG GAMU-GAMO (1976) at Cinema One Originals Film Festival from Oct 12 – 21!#MinsayIsangGamuGamo #SagipPelikula #CinemaOneOriginals #C1Originals #IAmOriginal #ABSCBNFilmRestoration

Posted by ABS-CBN Film Restoration on Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Corazon de la Cruz is a nurse in the Philippines who hopes to move to the United States, despite the injustices their soldiers have done to her community. She ends up reconsidering her plans when her brother is shot dead by an American soldier on the night of her departure.

The film’s restoration was completed in 2018, and it is part of the roster of movies being screened by at the Cinemalaya Film Festival 2020.

 

Omeng Satanasia (1977)

Available for streaming on iWant

Despite having a successful career, aging scientist Omeng is disappointed over having never found true happiness. When he fails to develop a formula that brings back his youth, he sells his soul to the devil and has to find a woman who will truly love him within a year.

“Omeng Satanasia” helped the late Dolphy win his first and only FAMAS award through his portrayal of four characters in the movie: an aging scientist, a young genius, a guardian angel and the devil.

 

Aguila (1980)

Available for streaming on Vimeo

“Aguila” follows the story of the Aguila family, who discovers that their missing patriarch, Danie, has been alive after being presumed dead for three years. As they look for their father, they learn more about their history—which is interwoven with significant events from the 1896 Philippine Revolution, the American occupation, the Japanese era and the student militant activities of the late 1960s to early 1970s.

The 1980 period film was described as “the biggest Filipino film ever made,” and the film’s restoration was completed in 2019.

 

Misteryo sa Tuwa (1984)

Available for streaming on iWant

MISTERYO SA TUWA: Before and After Restoration

Check out the before and after restoration clips of MISTERYO SA TUWA (1984), restored by Kantana, Wildsound Studios, and L'Immagine Ritrovata.It will premiere and screen during this year's Cinema One Originals from Nov 8 – 17, 2019!See the schedules per venue here: http://tiny.cc/7lcyfz#C1Originals #IAmOriginal #SagipPelikula #ABSCBNFilmRestoration #PHCinema100 #PHCinemaCentennial #100YearsPHCinema #MisteryoSaTuwa

Posted by ABS-CBN Film Restoration on Monday, October 28, 2019

Set in Lucban, Quezon in the 1950s, “Misteryo sa Tuwa” follows the lives of Ponsoy, Mesiong and Jamin after they steal a suitcase filled with money from a plane crash site and resolve to never report what they found to the authorities. 

This film was an entry in the 1984 Metro Manila Film Festival, and restoration took five years to complete.

 

Kakabakaba Ka Ba? (1980)

Available for streaming on iWant

Couples Johnny and Melanie, Nonong and Nancy find themselves in conflict with warring Japanese and Chinese drug syndicates. The two groups later try to settle their conflicts through a grand sing and dance showdown 

“Kakabakaba Ka Ba?” is the last film produced by LVN Pictures before its facilities closed, and its restoration was completed in 2015.

 

Bulaklak sa City Jail (1984)

Available for streaming on iWant

Bulaklak sa City Jail [TRAILER – Digitally Restored & Remastered]

Catch the digitally restored and remastered version of this powerful CLASSIC Filipino movie starring the SUPERSTAR Nora Aunor at the Home of Filipino films, Cinema Centenario – Maginhawa.November 15 | 09:00PM | FRIDAY___Book your tickets now!Ticket prices (per screening)🎟 Student 150PHP🎟 Regular 200PHPWe also accept walk-ins. For inquiries and ticket reservations, please contact 0945 536 7054 and provide the following information:Complete Name:Film Title:Screening Date and Time:Num of Tickets:_____A confirmation receipt will be given upon reservation. We honor PWD and Senior Citizen discounts. Please pay, claim, and select seats at the venue an hour before screening. Otherwise, the reservation is forfeited. Thank you.NO EXTRA FEE FOR RESERVATIONCinema Centenario is located at 2/F #95 Maginhawa Street, Teachers Village East, Diliman, Quezon City.#WelcomeHome#SupportPHFilms#PHCinema100#C1Originals2019#SagipPelikula#SaMaginhawaTayo

Posted by Cinema Centenario on Sunday, November 10, 2019

Known for its depiction of women’s situation while imprisoned, this drama film follows Angela, a pregnant woman who is accused and arrested for frustrated murder and sent to Manila City Jail. Here, she ends up meeting other women who have been penalized for different kinds of crimes.

“Bulaklak sa City Jail” won a number of awards in the 1984 Metro Manila Film Festival, and its restoration was completed in 2019.

 

John en Marsha ’85 sa Probinsya (1985)

Available for streaming on iWant

Upon the request of a sickly aunt, John, Marsha and the rest of the Puruntong family travel to the countryside to spend more time with her. As they adjust to their new lives, they learn of a former mayor’s plans to open an industrial plant, which threatens to pollute the town.

This is the fifth film based John en Marsha, a sitcom that aired on the Radio Philippines Network in the 1980s. Its restoration was completed in 2018.

 

Sana Maulit Muli (1995)

Available for streaming on Amazon Prime and Apple TV

“Sana Maulit Muli” tells the story of Agnes, a shy girl who is struggling to survive in the United States, and Jerry, an on-the-rise advertising executive who has to provide for his family. The strain of their long-distance relationship ends with them drifting apart, until Jerry quits his job and flies to the US to reconnect with Agnes.

The film won Best Picture and Best Screenplay at the Gawad Urian Awards, and restoration was completed on its 20th anniversary in 2015.

 

Hataw Na! (1995)

Available for streaming on iWant

Robbie Mallorca and Anna Alvarado are teachers in an exclusive school, run by administrators who are conservative and disapprove of the students’ wish to build a dance group. The teachers then conduct underground training for the students to help them develop their talents in the arts.

The film’s restoration was completed in 2017.

 

Labs Kita… Okey Ka Lang? (1998)

Available for streaming on iWant and Apple TV

This romance and comedy film follows Bujoy and Ned, who have been inseparable since childhood. Upon entering college, Bujoy realizes that she has feelings for Ned and resolves not to act on it in fear of ruining their relationship—until Ned falls in love with her balikbayan friend.

The film is considered a local pop culture favorite and its restoration was completed in 2017.

 

Header photo screengrabbed from “Misteryo sa Tuwa”

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TAGS: ABS-CBN abs-cbn film restoration project Aguila Biyaya ng Lupa Bulaklak sa City Jail Hataw Na! John en Marsha '85 sa Probinsya Kakabakaba Ka Ba? Labs Kita... Okey Ka Lang? Malvarosa Minsa'y Isang Gamu-gamo Misteryo sa Tuwa nolisoli Omeng Satanasia sagip pelikula Sana Maulit Muli