As the general community quarantine remains in effect the whole island of Palawan, while we stay home I am sure many of us are binge-watching a lot of movies and series from different platforms available online, either from our phones, laptop or thru our TV sets.
We came up with a list of 10 Filipino movies that are fully and partially shot in different locations in Palawan that you may find interesting, some of these films are available in many movie apps that can bring in memories of good old days here in Puerto Princesa or in some municipalities.
The list is in random order as extracted from Palawenderer blog.
1.MR AND MRS. CRUZ- 2018
Following the genre of hugot movies, this love story of two un-couple happens in Palawan, their fate were connected after they book a tour in going to Underground river, up to travelling going to El Nido wherein they share a lot of stories.
The movie will show a lot of beautiful sceneries from Sabang up to many islands in El Nido, the star of this film is JC Santos and Ryza Cenon.
- PLONING- 2008
This is Palawan’s most important film of all time as of now, the first movie of Cuyonon Director Dante Nico Garcia is a breakthrough in many aspects. This is so far the first Cuyonon speaking film that became an Oscar entry of the Philippines.
Ploning is Judy Ann Santos, which is based from a local folk song of Cuyo, another island municipality of Palawan. The film was entirely shot in Cuyo island and also stars Eugene Domingo, Tessie Tomas, Mylene Dizon and many more.
Contrary to what many expect, Ploning is not showing scenes from Cuyo’s famous landmark such as the Church, the port, the Aguado and many more, it did show only locations from outskirts of Cuyo like the old houses. Garcia told us before that its really Ploning story that were mainly focus in the movie and not the location, it is also the first movie that did shoot in Direk Ga’s hometown and led him to many directorial job, not known to many Ploning story is a very personal tribute story of Direk Ga to his very love relatives.
- PUERTO PRINCESA- 1997
After Former Mayor Edward Hagedorn making waves in the national scene as pro-environment Mayor of Puerto Princesa, this self-titled City movie is another biopic story on how he run the local government, from the cleanest city drive up to many issues that his administration is facing that concern the protection and environment.
Actor Ricky Davao is Hagedorn in the film along with Joel Torre and Rio Locsin. The movie also incorporate stories of some notable environmentalist in the country who lost their lives fighting for Mother Nature. The movie explore and showcase many destinations in the City like the Underground River, the public places like the old supermarket, and of course the City Hall, it also use songs and music of Sinika.
FYI, there is another movie entitled Puerto Princesa in the year 1966, a black and white film that stars Amalia Fuentes and Romano Castellvi.
- LIHIM- 1997
When Palawan’s very own actor Matthew Mendoza made headlines in showbiz, this is one and the only movie he made during the hype of his career that is shot in his beloved City. This suspense filled movie is top billed by Sabado night girl Ina Raymundo.
Matthew’s brother Solomon Mendoza make his debut acting in this movie, making it his only film so far. Among the locations of this movie are the famous Haunted house in Bancao-Bancao, the white beach, the Palawan State University open grounds and many other.
- KAHIT KAILAN – 1996
This Metro Manila Film Fest entry is originally entitled as Surigao, because the story focus on its characters that came from Surigao province, leading the cast are Richard Gomez, Aiko Melendez, G Toengi and Jomari Yllana. It also star Chanda Romero as guest, Romero is residing in Puerto Princesa during those times.
The film showcase the islands in Honda Bay like Luli Island and Meara Marina. This is the film that started the romance of Aiko and Jomari that led to their marriage, in one interview of Aiko she reveal that it is during the shoot in one of the islands in Honda Bay that Jomari confess his love to her. One unforgettable location shown in this movie is the iconic Asiaworld Resort Hotel, the only 5 star hotel by that time in Puerto Princesa.
- HAGEDORN 1996
This one is so far the most celebrated movie that ever shoot in Puerto Princesa, because it stars the late King of Filipino movies, Fernando Poe Jr acting as the former Mayor Edward Hagedorn and the hottest leading lady that time, Sharmaine Arnaiz.
It’s a biopic film that tells the beginning of Hagedorn, their logging business and jueteng, until he became Mayor of Puerto Princesa. Among the locations in the movie are the former Kamayan Resto of Hagedorn where he play as folk rock artist, the underground river, the tagburos coastal area, and a lot more.
- THE SECRETS OF SARAH JANE- 1994
When the life story of the AIDS victim Sarah Jane Salazar made into film, it was top billed by then hottest star Gelli De Belen, and some of its scene was shot here in Puerto Princesa, I remember I did watch the shooting of this film in the Cathedral of Immaculate Concepcion, where Gelli is running scared going to the old Seminario De San Jose to seek refuge and shelter after finding out that she is a AIDS carrier.
But to correct, the real Sarah Jane didn’t grow up or resides in Palawan, the production just choose the City for the location and nothing at all. Among familiar scenes in the movies is the coastal barangay of Liberty where a beautiful tulay was there before. It also show the very beautiful white sand beach or known now as Nasin-AW and Silica beach, and a lot more residential and office places in the City.
- HUWAG MONG SALINGIN ANG SUGAT KO-1991
Before Culion hit Metro Manila Film Festival last 2019, Huwag Mong Salingin Ang Sugat Ko already explore Culion in the silver screen, this is supposed to be the last film that is being directed by the late Lino Brocka, the film is shot in the municipality of Culion.
Culion is another iconic trademark of Palawan before, it’s an island where all lepers are being keep for isolation and treatment, until now many of its residents are people who are cured of this diseases, that many believe can be communicable way back where there are no medicines then.
Brocka didn’t finish filming this movie, one of its actor Christopher De Leon finished this film tagged as the modern version of Noli Me Tangere of the National Hero Dr. Jose Rizal. It also stars Dina Bonnevie, Nennette Medved and Monalisa.
- BATANG IWAHIG- 1966.
Even before Palawan tourism boom, Iwahig Prison Penal Farm is a known icon of Palawan, it was tag as the prison without bars due to its system for prisoner, which they can freely roam around in a paradise set up, without the burden of completing your sentence.
The film stars the former President Joseph Estrada with the very young Vilma Santos, the Iwahig Central is showcase in the opening credits of the movie, where Erap seated and was happy because he will be set free soon, he was sentenced here for robbery and he kept the money somewhere else.
- BAYBAYIN- 2012
Auraeus Solito or known now as Kanakan Balintagos is a Palaw’an pride, after his success in indie cinema he fulfilled his dream to create a Palawan film trilogy, a follow up to his Busong movie, a Cinema One Originals film festival entry that stars Alessandra De Rossi and her older sister Assunta De Rossi.
The film is shot in many islands in El Nido, the story focus on the indigenous love story of two sisters falling in love in one man.
Kanakan is known for his past movies like Ang Pagdadalaga Ni Maximo Oliveros, Pisay and many more, he also directed the award winning “Ang Huling El Bimbo” music video of Eraserheads.