Friday, May 4, 2007
SFiFF2007 - Tuli
"Tuli" (Philippines 2006, 113 min., shown at the 50th SFiFF) is a charming comedy about family, tradition, sexuality, and circumcision.
Daisy lives in a tropical village in the Philippines, where boys win their brides by singing their hearts out under the girls' windows. The film opens with Daisy's father circumcises four young boys, who are around Daisy's age, and she has to help her father during the act. After they grow up, those boys can't win Daisy's heart because she believes that she doesn't need a man to be a family. She wants a girl to marry her.
This is the second feature from director Auraeus Solito. His critically acclaimed feature debut "The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros" is about a teenager boy falling in love with a cop in the city. Now, it is girl's turn, and it sets in a jungle instead of the inner city, but it's equally refreshing.
The film is very sweet and funny, when it's not shocking. How can I not to have a big grin when I see the reaction from the girls to the boys singing outside their windows?
When I travel, I love to go to a place that does not resemble places I have been to. Solito has the ability taking me to places that are extremely exotic. This time, he shows me the circumcision tradition in the Philippines while two girls fall in love. I wish I had not known, the circumcision part. It gives me goose bumps.
I wonder what his next film gonna be.