On Filipino science fiction

Early this morning I watched the trailer for the upcoming Filipino science fiction movie Instalado. Directed by Jason Paul Laxamana, the film explores the idea of a future in which knowledge can be purchased and installed on anyone willing to pay the cost. The protagonist is Victor, a young farmer hoping for a better life for his family, and the narrative follows his quest to be an “instalado” or an “insta” despite his limited means.

The film is an entry to TOFARM Film Festival, a two-year old fest that specifically aims to “uplift the farmers [and their] personal development.” Set in a country whose economy is still arguably hinged on agriculture, Instalado boasts of a premise that is both significant and potentially radical.

Continue reading “On Filipino science fiction”

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

TL;DR It’s an interesting, tongue-in-cheek sci-fi that gets funnier and philosophical in the latter third of the book.

Let me start by saying I am not a sci-fi fan. A friend once lent me all of her Dune books but I never got past the first few chapters. I have not even watched any of the Star Wars movies in full. You may kill me now, sure.

That said, getting into Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy was a bit of a struggle for me. The only reason I decided to read it was so I could get the deal about the towel reference — something about the towel being “the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have.” That factoid didn’t really do anything to forward the narrative. It’s just that: a factoid in the Hitchhiker universe.

Continue reading “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”