Cleaners is a coming-of-age anthology film about high school student cleaners from a rural catholic school in 2008. These students struggle with different societal pressures of being clean, proper and pure while they discover that the world is dirty and superficial to begin with. The stories range from the taboo of pooping in school to navigating local political dynasties. The film as a whole is put with a stop motion technique that is partially coloured one by one in 30,000 originals photographed in black and white.
(Philippines) Karl Glenn Barit is a Filipino director, musical director, and sound designer. He has been in charge of film music and sound in various feature-length and short films since 2015. He directed short films Bundok Chubibo (2014), Aliens Ata (2017) that won the Cinemalaya’s NETPAC Jury Prize and Nangungupahan (2018). Cleaners is his debut feature and the winner of Best Screenplay and Audience Award in the Asian Next Wave section of the QCinema International Film Festival.
Bundok Chubibo (cm, 2014), Aliens Ata (cm, 2017), Nangungupahan (cm, 2018), Cleaners (2020).
“I felt that photocopying the frames and manually handling them, brings forth this sense of unknown mistakes, misprints, in highlighters which I think also goes with the theme of the film – of straying away from what is supposed to be ‘clean’ and ‘perfect. The narrative and eventual execution of the film grew together: it took months of actively thinking about how they would get together. I feel like they had to benefit from each other so it wouldn’t feel like a useless gimmick.”