New documentary puts spotlight on 14-gold arnis champs at SEA Games
MANILA, Philippines – Fourteen golds, four silvers, and two bronzes. That sums up the unprecedented achievement of the Philippine National Arnis Team in the 30th Southeast Asian Games held last year right here in the Philippines.
The team members had been expecting to compete in this year’s World Eskrima Kali Arnis Federation Champions. But then of course the COVID-19 pandemic forced the entire world to stay home.
Fortunately, arnis fans can still closer look at the arnisadors because they‘re the focus of a new documentary called “Rebirth of the Rebellion Sport.”
Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, who is chairman of Philippine Eskrima Kali Arnis Federation (PEKAF), announced this in a statement issued on Tuesday.
Zubiri, who of course is an arnisador himself, will provide the historical context of arnis as a rebellion sport in this new documentary, which is directed and hosted by Franco Mabanta.
“Rebirth“ puts a spotlight on the PNAT athletes — their “fears, joys, and motivations ” and the grueling training they had to go through to shine at the SEA Games.
Members of the PNAT came from all over the country, ranging from young students to Army veterans who were selected through “grueling qualifying tournaments, the National Battle of Champions, and the Philippine Eskrima Kali Arnis Federation (PEKAF) Drafting Camp.”
“In order to go through this gauntlet and prepare for the SEA Games, athletes had to uproot their lives and leave their homes and families behind, dedicating six long months to intense training,” Zubiri’s statement relates.
In one segment of the docu, a teary Ross Ashley Monvile relates how she had to juggle her time between caring for her hospitalized mother and training for the SEA Games, where she would win a gold medal.
“The documentary also expertly captures the athletes’ stunning athleticism on the mat, with compelling shots and compositions that explain why Hollywood directors and stunt coordinators are always so eager to showcase arnis in their films,” Zubiri’s statement says.
You can see all these for yourself in the documentary embedded in this article.
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