A hurricane is about to hit the Philippines and the inhabitants of Caromatan, a country village, are preparing to be evacuated to a more secure area. But Heremias, a peddlar, decides not to join the group and goes off on his own with his cart. This is the beginning of the man's long voyage that will take him to the town of Barrio Hapon, after he has been robbed of all his goods. Heremias is tracking the theives and by chance overhears a group of young people planing to kidnap, rape and murder a girl. He tells a police sergeant, who advises him to forget everything he heard because one of the young men is the son of a very influential politician. Even the local priest refuses to help him. After being brutally beaten by the police sergeant, all the man can do is turn to God.
Lav Diaz (Cotabato, Philippines, 1958) studied at the Mowelfund Film Institute of Quezon City, where he discovered his passion for cinema, and in particular the works of Lino Brocka. He debuted in 1997 with Serafin Geronimo, Kriminal ng Baryo Concepcion, which right from the start identified him as one of the most innovative directors of Filipino cinema. In 1999 he directed two other films for Regal Films (the same production house he debuted with): Burger Boys, which he had actually begun shooting before Kriminal, and Hubad Sa Ilalim ng Buwan, which he presented at Berlin and later re-edited. International fame arrived with his next film, Batang West Side, an over 5-hour-long film which won Best Film at the Festival of Brussels and at the Singapore International Film Festival and reaped unanimous critical praise, making Diaz the most appreciated contemporary Filipino director around. His film Hesus rebolusyonaryo (2002), an ambitious science fiction story, again received the same critical success as his previous works. He next completed his copious masterpiece Ebolusyon ng isang pamilayang Pilipino (2005), which was presented at the last Rotterdam Festival. The film, which he has been working on for 9 years, shows 15 years of Filipino history between the 1970s and '80s through the evolution of a local family. He is now working on the final stages of his upcoming film Heremias.
(Updated to the last partecipation to TFF)
Banlaw (Cleance, cm, 1985), Step No, Step Yes (video, cm, 1988), Serafin Geronimo, kriminal ng baryo concepcion (The Criminal of Barrio Concepcion, 1998), Burger Boys (1999), Hubad sa ilalim ng buwan (Naked Under the Moon, 1999), Batang West Side (2002), Hesus rebolusyonaryo (Hesus the Revolutionary, 2002), Ebolusyon ng isang pamilayang Pilipino (Evolution of a Filipino Family, 2004), Heremias (2005).