Monday, April 13, 2009

Paalam Aking Bulalakaw (Goodbye My Shooting

Paalam Aking Bulalakaw (Goodbye My Shooting Star)
Directed and Written by Khavn De La Cruz (Squatterpunk, Hindi Kita Kilala)
Starring Meryll Soriano

Who knows what came to pass between K and Ana before today? K is, of course, director Khavn himself sort of, the man with the movie camera whom we never see, and Ana is Meryll Soriano, his obscure object of desire whom we can't take our eyes off. They talk and it's not as if it gets so obtuse as to resist parsing. Just weightless and hesitant and stumblebum . There are no codes in the conversation to decipher. What we talk about when we talk about love are the things that go unsaid anyway. The inarticulate speech of the heart. So maybe we should just take Khavn's word for it that K loves Ana and that's as far as it got. Which then makes this. . . what? Chance? Or design? Date? Or destiny? Unrequited? Reunited?

The Linklater parallels you invoke only to cut a long story short and to peg what can be a bitch to peg, what is better off seeing for yourself- - - Before Sunrise at 30 f.p.s. on a shoestring. The parallelism does take, somewhat- - - the walking around, the talking around, the going everywhere, the going nowhere. But there's no arc in this first person love story, no fate playing matchmaker, no intrusions from the universe. Only the brutal symmetry - - - the solipsistic economy and delicate equilibrium and minimalist stasis- - - of its POV.

It's the longest goodbye in the universe when your shooting star burns out, shooting star here's used loosely, figuratively. It rings more poetically in the vernacular - - -bulalakaw. You call them that because they burn so bright, because you wistfully look to the sky for their trajectories to cross your radar again even after their orbits have passed most likely forever, because you wish on them. But you knew that and maybe you knew that out of having had this extraterrestrial hurt too, out of having the unforgettable face of that lapsed darling afterimaging in your head long after her radio silence, her invisibility, her supernova before your eyes. And all of this is in K's head. Like the lovesongs falling on deaf ears, like the poetry in the details, like the words that fail, like the wishfully-thinking extraterrestrial hurt it hooks me with.* * * *

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