Visions/Panawin: Focus on Philippine Cinema at NYU/KJCC

Perfumed Nightmare / Mababangong Bangungot

Expired October 30, 2021 11:00 PM
Already unlocked? for access

Visions/Panawin aims to introduce the New York University and King Juan Carlos Center community to the ardent, prolific culture of the Philippines as expressed in key works from the rich and audacious canon of Philippine cinema. The Fall semester series includes classics by Philippine cinematic giants (and National Artists) Ishmael Bernal, Lino Brocka, Eddie Romero, and Kidlat Tahimik, along with acclaimed contemporary works directed by Arden Rod Condez and Ramona Diaz.

This series is available exclusively to NYU students/staff and KJCC constituents only, for free, courtesy of the Sulo Philippine Studies Initiative at NYU. Please check the NYU Sulo Panawin or the KJCC websites, or click on their logos on this page, for more information. You will not be able to view this film after 7PM EDT Oct 30, 2021.

     "Perfumed Nightmare makes one forget months of dreary moviegoing, for it reminds one that invention, insolence, enchantment - even innocence - are still available on film." -- Susan Sontag

     “One of the most original and poetic works of cinema made anywhere in the world in the seventies” – Werner Herzog

     “(The film) is constructed like a cinematographic equivalent of a shanty town. Any material that can be used is. The result is tough, vital, simple, real.” – Ross Davenish/De Beeld

Perfumed Nightmare, which premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival in 1977, is still celebrated internationally as a key text of post-neocolonial third world cinema in the way it declares its independence from reliance on neocolonialist values. It turns old putdowns and characterizations of films from developing countries – such as low budget, technical raggedness, non-conformity to expected dramatic arcs -- on their heads, and transforms such perceived limitations into virtues. Francis Ford Coppola distributed the film in the US and said, “I felt Americans had to see one of my favorite independent films – for its non-Hollywood strengths.”  

The film was so unique in form and content that many at that time wondered if it was just a flash in the pan. However, Kidlat has since accumulated a body of work that has stayed true to the gleefully rebellious and artisanal exuberance of Perfumed Nightmare, a filmography that has been honored with several major accolades, including the Fukuoka Prize, the Caligari Award, the Prince Claus Laureate, and his designation as a National Artist of the Philippines.

Rather than a one-off, Perfumed Nightmare is now seen as the opening salvo of a distinguished career; a credo, a declaration of artistic and intellectual independence from strictures imposed by commonplace, borrowed or imposed modalities and ideologies.

Following this Panawin presentation, NYU’s KJCC will host an online conversation with Kidlat Tahimik on Monday, November 8/12 noon ET on KJCC’s FB page.  For more details:

An installation artist and performer as well, Kidlat opens a major installation in Madrid on October 28, commissioned by the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia to mark the 500th anniversary of Spain’s first contact with the Philippines. For more information on the installation:

Winner: BERLIN INT"L FILM FESTIVAL - FIPRESCI Prize, OCIC Award/Recommendation, Interfilm Award/Recomendation; AMIENS INT'L FILM FESTIVAL - Prix de la Cite' Amiens

  • Year
  • Runtime
    93 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
  • Director
    Kidlat Tahimik
  • Screenwriter
    Kidlat Tahimik
  • Producer
    Kidlat Tahimik
  • Cast
    Kidlat Tahimik, Mang Fely, Dolores Santamaria, Goergette Baudry, Katrin Muller, Hartmut Lerch
  • Cinematographer
    Kidlat Tahimik, Hartmut Lerch
  • Editor
    Kidlat Tahimik
  • Production Design
    Kidlat Tahimik