10 Pinoy Films to Get You in the Mood for Independence Day

From classics to new movies set to hit theaters


(SPOT.ph) June 12 is right around the corner, so we decided to commemorate the brave men and women who fought for the freedom we have and enjoy today. Plenty of films have depicted the incredible lives of the real people who have been instrumental in our history. Whether they're classic movies or still slated to hit theaters, we've rounded up 10 bayani movies for Independence Day.


Editor's Note: Only films depicting historical figures have been considered for this list. Historical movies like Aishite Imasu 1941, Dekada '70, and Sister Stella L were excluded.


Also read: Top 10 Must-Watch Filipino Period Films


Photo via pandayanglinobrocka.com

Dung-Aw (1975)

Directed by Lino Brocka, the musical film stars Armida Siguiyon-Reyna as Gabriela Silang. Set in the 18th century, the film depicts Gabriela who leads the revolution after Diego's assassination. Dung-aw refers to the Ilocano tradition of singing about the life and accomplishments of a deceased friend or relative during his wake.




Sakay (1993)

In this Raymond Red film, Julio Diaz portrays Macario Sakay, a rebel leader who founded the "Tagalog Republic." Sakay continued to fight for independence from the Americans, even after the end of the Philippine-American war.



Tirad Pass: The Story of Gen. Gregorio del Pilar (1997)

Carlo J. Caparas directed this biopic that depicts the life of Gregorio del Pilar (Romnick Sarmenta), beginning with his early days, his rise through the ranks and finally, ending with his historic battle in Tirad Pass. The film also stars Joel Torre as Emilio Aguinaldo and Julio Diaz as Deodato Arellano.



Jose Rizal (1998)

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Perhaps one of the most well-known and celebrated bayani movies, Marilou Diaz-Abaya's take on our national hero (Cesar Montano) recounts his life and works through a series of flashbacks as he prepares for his execution. The film earned multiple wins and nominations from various award-giving bodies, including the FAMAS Awards, the Gawad Urian Awards, and the Metro Manila Film Festival.




Bayaning Third World (1999)

Another critically acclaimed Rizal fim is Bayaning Third World, helmed by Mike de Leon. Starring Joel Torre, the film focuses on Rizal's supposed retraction of his views on the Roman Catholic Church, with the help of two filmmakers (Ricky Davao and Cris Villanueva) who "interview" key people from his life.




Lapu-Lapu (2002)

Even action star Lito Lapid didn't miss the opportunity to play a historical figure. It's not the most historically accurate, nor is it the most serious of the bunch. Instead, viewers are treated to a campy depiction of Lapu-Lapu and the battle of Mactan.




Ang Paglilitis ni Andres Bonifacio (2010)

There's been a recent influx of Andres Bonifacio biopics including ER Ejercito's El Presidente in 2012 and the Robin Padilla-starrer Bonifacio: Ang Unang Pangulo in 2014. We're zeroing in, however, on this 2010 Cinemalaya entry directed by Maria O'Hara. The film shows the trial (and fascinating power-play) of Bonifacio (Alfred Vargas) under President Emilio Aguinaldo (Lance Raymundo). 



Supremo (2012)

The aforementioned film isn't the only time Alfred Vargas portrayed Bonifacio. In 2012, he reprised his role in Supremo, a more epic and big-budgeted retelling of the hero's life. The film spans from his humble beginnings to his tragic execution.



Heneral Luna (tentative September 2015)

Directed by Jerrold Tarog (Sana Dati, Confessional), the historical epic stars John Arcilla as General Antonio Luna in the midst of the tension-filled Philippine-American war. Viewers will also get a glimpse of General Luna's early years. The film features a stellar cast that includes Joem Bascon, Epy Quizon, and Mylene Dizon.



Lakambini (tentative 2015)

Another highly anticipated historical film is Lakambini, starring Lovi Poe as Gregoria de Jesus, wife of Andres Bonifacio and a revolutionary hero in her own right. The movie is based on the Palanca-winning script of Rody Vera, and will be helmed by acclaimed directors Jeffrey Jeturian (Kubrador, Ekstra) and Ellen Ongkeko-Marfil (Boses).


Also read: Top 10 Must-Watch Filipino Period Films

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