Filmmaker plans to make documentaries on unknown Filipino heroes

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 5 July) – After the successful screenings of his World War 2 documentary films in key areas in the country, a Filipino filmmaker is planning to create more films heralding the stories of the unknown Filipino heroes who fought during the turbulent years of the country.

Filmmaker Bani Logroño (with mic) talks about his World War II documentary films at the “Wednesdays Habi at Kape” of the Abreeza Mall in Davao City on Wednesday (5 July 2017).Photo courtesy of Mindanao Development Authority

Speaking during “Wednesdays Habi at Kape,” filmmaker and director Bani Logroño said he created his documentary films – “Unsurrendered 2: The Hunters ROTC Guerrillas” and “Valor: The Legacy V. De Ocampo” – to reach and educate the new generation of Filipinos and the families of the war veterans.

His works have been brought to different areas in the country and even in the US.

Spyron-AV Manila managing director Lucky Guillermo said they have up in their sleeve the “Battle of Ising” that occurred in Carmen, Davao del Norte and the story of Jose Abad Santos.

Logroño said,

“We tell through films some of the most inspiring stories yet not a lot of people know about it, not a lot people know about our Filipino World War 2 heroes. Most of the time, when we think of World War 2 in the Philippines, we look at just America as the ones who liberated the country but actually it was a joint effort, both of the US and us, the guerilla fighters here in the Philippines.”

He said they brought his films to Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, and Davao cities for the free screening of his works.

Guillermo added about 169 people filled up the cinema of the Abreeza Mall on July 4.

Logroño said they will go to Pampanga, Baguio, and other places in the country this year.

Produced in 2015, his film, “Unsurrendered 2: The Hunters ROTC Guerrillas” is a multi-award winning documentary that tells the story of some of the bravest Filipinos who fought the Japanese when they invaded the country in 1941, among them were the members of the Hunters ROTC Guerillas, one of the first and youngest of the Philippine resistance fighters.

“That’s why, the story really resonated with me. I think it really needed to be told because it shows people that there’s no minimum age requirement to serve the country to fight for what you believe in. That story really spoke to me and that’s why I think it resonates with other people as well,” he said.

In a briefer, it said that the film “Valor: The Legacy of Col. Emmanuel V. De Ocampo” was created the following year which features a story of the ordinary “teenager from Visayas who transformed into one of the fiercest Filipino guerrilla commanders during the World War II.”

It also shows the courage of De Ocampo, “who was only armed with courage and love of country, and his contribution for liberating many areas in Southern Luzon, including Makati, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig, and many other towns in Manila, Rizal, Cavite, Laguna, and Batangas.”

Logroño said the production of his films was funded by the Philippine Veterans Bank.

He said they also enlisted the country’s histories for the documentaries.

Logroño was born in Australia but grew up in Cagayan de Oro City. He studied filmmaking in the International Academy of Film and Television in Mactan, Cebu.

He then went to California where he started his work on filmmaking but decided to go back to the Philippines to do films that “will inspire more people.” (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)