Expired January 29, 2024 6:55 AM
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Amidst the traditional pomp and circumstance of Filipino elections, a quirky people’s movement rises to defend the nation against deepening threats to truth and democracy. In a collective act of joy as a form of resistance, hope flickers against the backdrop of increasing autocracy.

With the end of Rodrigo Duterte’s presidency and his attacks on democratic institutions like a free independent press, some Filipinos hoped for a new beginning. In contrast, others yearned for even more autocracy and a return to an era before the People Power Revolution and the restoration of democracy just a generation before. In this companion piece to A Thousand Cuts, which helped introduce the world to online news site Rappler and Nobel Peace Prize winner Maria Ressa, director Ramona Diaz returns to Sundance with a film that takes you inside the fight for democracy in the modern media age. As elections threaten to be simulacrums of democratic processes, And So It Begins chronicles what the defenders of democracy in the Philippines have experienced and is a haunting depiction of what is at stake in elections around the world.—SS

Available in person. Also available online for the public (January 25–28) and credentialed press and industry (January 24–28).

  • Year
  • Runtime
    113 minutes
  • Language
    English, Filipino and other dialects
  • Country
    United States/Philippines
  • Director
    Ramona S. Diaz
  • Screenwriter
    Ramona S. Diaz
  • Producer
    Ramona S. Diaz