Basel, December 17, 2020
Of Animals and Humans
Lav Diaz's latest film makes it into the Asian Top 10 of the legendary New Music Express (NME).
Since 1952, the legendary English New Music Express (NME) has been publishing its "best" lists. This has not changed during the pandemic. The editorial team spent a lot of time finding the world's best films of the year 2020 at the virtual film festivals. The Bildrausch winner Lav Diaz made it into the top 10 of East and South Asian cinema with his latest film Genus Pan (Lahi, Hayop). Congratulations!
In a statement on his latest black-and-white work of art, the industrious Filipino storyteller – who attended Bildrausch in 2017 with Ang Babang Humayo (The Women Who Left) and in 2018 with Ang Panahon Mg Halimaw (The Season of the Devil) – explains that everything started with a thoughtless remark. When asked how he would describe a human being, he replied that it is not much more than an animal. He immediately regretted his remark, but it later turned out to be the only correct characterisation. Genus Pan (Lahi, Hayop) has thus become a meditation about the human being's instincts and drives, and about the question whether emancipation (from what? a development process?) can actually succeed.
Genus Pan (Lahi, Hayop) does not yet have a planned cinema release in Switzerland.