Seminar on Spirituality in Asian Film with Fr Malone

Dec 22nd 2009

International film reviewer and author Fr. Peter Malone, MSC, returns to Manila in January for another Film and Faith Seminar, this time on Spirituality in Asian Film. The Communication Foundation for Asia is organizing the seminar on January 11-13, 2010 at the CFA Lagerwey Hall in Sta. Mesa, Manila. The seminar, which will be open to media educators, communication students, catechists and film buffs, is scheduled from 9:00a.m. – 5:00p.m., with free film screenings at 5:30p.m.

CFA has been conducting the Film and Faith Seminar Series with Fr. Malone every January since 2007, each of them on different themes. Film and Faith 1 was on Jesus films and the pastoral use of cinema. In 2008, the Film and Faith 2 seminar focused on using movies for values education. He also went to Cebu that same year to reprise the Film and Faith 1 seminar. In January 2009, Film and Faith 3 was a more extended event starting with a seminar on “Search for God in Films”, plus a week-long film festival featuring Signis award-winning films.

For the upcoming F&F 4 seminar in January 2010, Fr. Malone will be discussing the setting for Asian spirituality, the nature of faith, belief and commitment. Fr. Malone observed that since this is the region where the major religions of the world originated, “Asia is often associated with spirituality, the many different ways in which these religions, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity and Islam, grew and developed.”

Fr Malone further noted: “Asian cinema has distinctive ways of storytelling and imagining the human condition. This means that when we search for spirituality in Asian cinema, we enter into different mind-sets and religious contexts and find different expressions and images from those of the West where Hollywood film-making became a popular norm for the movies. In our globalised world (including the movie multiplexes that abound almost everywhere on each continent), there are interchanges of stories, remakes of Asian stories in Western style – but, also, a growing appreciation of distinctive Asian cinemas.”

Examples of films dramatizing the major Asian religions and traditions will be shown. Well-known directors such as Satyajit Ray (India), Akira Kurosawa (Japan), Zhang Yimou (China), Kim-Ki-duk (South Korea) and Lino Brocka (Philippines) will be cited.

On the third day of the seminar, Fr Malone is expected to be joined by Filipino film critics and writers/directors including Clodualdo del Mundo Jr and Fr Nick Cruz, who will talk about the Philippine film experience. Other film educators are also expected to speak on the works of Ishmael Bernal, Mike de Leon and Brillante Mendoza.

Fr. Peter Malone, MSC is a former member of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications and was the first President of SIGNIS, the international Catholic body for film, radio, and television. He is an internationally known lecturer on film and media education and a regular member of the Catholic Jury at International Film Festivals such as Cannes, Venice, Berlin as well as in Asia, Africa, and the Americas. In his 36 years of study and practice of film criticism, he has written more than 25 books, including “Movie Christs and Anti-Christs” “The Film” and “Films and Values.” He is co-author of “Lights, Camera…Faith!”, a 3-volume movie lectionary. CFA has also published two of his books, “Film & Faith” and “Film, Faith and the Church”.

Slots for the seminar are limited. Those interested in participating may contact the CFA Training Department at 713-2732 or 713-2972 or email or There are special discounts for groups and for Signis members.

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