Pagdating Sa Dulo (1971): Ishmael Bernal’s classic now digitally restored


Ishmael Bernal’s first film Pagdating sa Dulo has another screening on July 8 at Cinematheque Manila at 5pm.


Pagdating sa Dulo‘s (At The Top) film rights were given to the National Film Archives of the Philippines by George Sison and restoration was made at l’Immagine Ritrovata in Italy through using a 16mm internegative; print was scanned at 4k resolution. The digital restoration process required considerable efforts due to the great number of issues affecting the print. The digital restoration allowed the removal of tears, scratches, warping, visible marks and Halos.

Named Best Film of the Decade (1970-1979) by the Gawad Urian Awards in 1980, Pagdating sa Dulo is an incisive but poetic and philosophical investigation into the dark side of the film industry, its conflicted personalities, and the oppressive political regime of the 1970s.

Stellar cast: Rita Gomez, Vic Vargas, Eddie Garcia, Zenaida Amador, Rosemarie Gil, Subas Herrero, Ronaldo valdez, Joonee Gamboa, Elvira Manahan, Ernie Zarate, Ellen Esquerra and Ramon Moral.

The film tells of a bourgeois filmmaker who seeks out a stripper to act in his film, subsequently catalyzing her career as an actress. On her rise to fame, she introduces her taxi driver boyfriend to the world of showbiz with the hope of improving his downtrodden life, and he soon becomes her leading man on the silver screen. At the height of their stardom, glamor, and wealth, their souls become corrupt—the couple morally conflicted and wounded by the onscreen façade of their love and selves.

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