Pirate Film Cultures in Manila (with Jasmine Nadua Trice)

In this week’s episode, guest Jasmine Nadua Trice discusses her article “Manila’s New Cinephilia,” which analyzes the informal circulation of DVDs through Manila’s street vendors during the early 21st century. Trice demonstrates how these pirate forms of film distribution and consumption are quotidian practices in the Global South and why they represent new form of cinephilia, an appreciation of and deep knowledge of cinema’s technological aspects independent of the text itself.

“Informal circulation is a really quotidian part of everyday life in probably the majority of the world, especially in the early 2000s. And if you broaden that out to encompass digital piracy, torrents and so on, it’s probably the majority of how people access their movies. I think it’s easy to romanticize practices that are extremely mundane for people for whom it is just everyday life so, for myself, I really want to resist tendencies towards diasporic romanticism.”

Episode Transcript (opens as PDF)

Show Notes

12:30 Todo Todo Teros (John Torres, 2006)

14:00 The Woman in the Septic Tank (Marlon Rivera, 2011)

16:44Notes on the Auteur Theory” by Andrew Sarris

18:30The Decay of Cinema” by Susan Sontag

19:15Cinephilia, Technophilia, and Collaborative Remix Zones” by Dale Hudson and Patricia Zimmerman

19:30 Beyond the Multiplex Cinema, New Technologies, and the Home by Barbara Klinger

21:20 about [in]Transition, a journal of videographic criticism

28:45 Shadow Economies of Cinema by Ramon Lobato

30:00 Signal and Noise Media, Infrastructure, and Urban Culture in Nigeria by Brian Larkin

39:30 City of Screens: Imagining Audiences in Manila’s Alternative Film Culture by Jasmine Trice

43:30On Three Films Set in Mindanao” by Patrick Campos

About the Guest

Jasmine Nadua Trice is Associate Professor of Cinema & Media Studies in the Department of Film, Television, and Digital Media at the University of California, Los Angeles. She has written on Southeast Asian women filmmakers, ethnoburban multiplexes, production subcultures in Los Angeles, visual culture and embodiment in colonial Manila, and the relationship between film practice and theory. Her first book, City of Screens: Imagining Audiences in Manila’s Alternative Film Culture (Duke University Press, 2021) examines the politics of cinema circulation in early-2000s Manila, Philippines.