Nelson Mandela's Rainbow Nation awoke Friday to a future without its 95-year-old founding father, his compatriots joining an upwelling of global mourning and celebration of his astonishing life. The icon of South Africa's anti-apartheid struggle and a colossus of 20th century politics died late Thursday at his home in Johannesburg, surrounded by friends and family. Outside his home mourners, some in pyjamas, held an all-night vigil, dancing, ululating, chanting and singing the songs of a …
President Barack Obama hailed former South African President Nelson Mandela on Thursday as a leader who left his country with a legacy of freedom and peace. "He achieved more than could be expected of any man," Obama said at the White House shortly after the announcement of Mandela's death. "Today he's gone home, and we've lost one of the most influential, courageous and profoundly good human beings that any of us will share time with on this earth," Obama said. Obama, the first black U.S. …
Philippine President Benigno Aquino lauded democratic reforms in Myanmar as he signed several bilateral agreements with his visiting counterpart Thein Sein Thursday. Thein Sein arrived at Manila's presidential palace where he was accorded a red carpet welcome for his first visit to the Philippines. Aquino said the Philippines, which also made a transition from authoritarian rule to democracy in the 1980s, would be helping Myanmar in opening up its society. Formerly one of the most vocal …
In what could be a convenient—or creepy—move for some, Google may be planning to let automated bots do your socializing for you. Google has just filed a patent for what it called an "automated generation of suggestions for personalized reactions in a social network." Google said a suggestion generation module may have collector modules for credentials, a suggestion analyzer, a user interface module and a decision tree. The modules can interact with other systems like e-mail, SMS, micro …
The Philippines registered $4.469 billion in net foreign portfolio investments as of Nov. 22, up 30.8 percent from a year earlier, breaching government's expectations of $4.4 billion for the whole of 2013, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas data …
Time and again, we Filipinos have proven our toughness and resilience in the face of life's misfortunes – calamities, disasters, idiocy of some public officials. Despite this strong Filipino spirit, however, we're a pretty sensitive bunch. The smallest mention of anything Filipino elicits kilig, while the tiniest slight at our country, culture, or fellow Filipinos incites rage.
In recognition of our balat-sibuyas (and perhaps emotional instability), here’s a rundown of twelve good, bad, ugly, but mostly, random appearances of the Philippines in pop culture.
Medal of Honor,
The Medal of Honor video game franchise gets a reboot in
Medal of Honor, Warfighter. The game is set in “real world terror threat”
places often glazed over by mainstream media -- and you know what they say, it's
more fun in the Philippines!
Gameplay is mapped out in Tungawan Jungle in Zamboanga, where Tier-1 ops take
on homegrown terrorist group Abu Sayyaf.
Should it be a cause for concern that the Philippines
might be portrayed as a terrorist country? Do we trust that we, as well as Somalia,
and other nations, will be depicted with care? Or is it just a harmless video
game after all? Maybe we shouldn't be talking terrorism in the Philippines on the heels of 2012 Hollywood film, Act of Valor.
Act of Valor
Act of Valor tells the heroic story of the US Navy
Seals' mission to recover a kidnapped CIA agent. Sounds like a typical American
anti-terrorism film? Wrong! Some of the terrorists involved were Filipinos!
Some people immediately labelled it as an “act of anti-Filipino prejudice,”
alleging that we were racially profiled as terrorists, while others simply
argued that just as not all Muslims are terrorists, not all Filipinos are
either. Maybe we should give humans a little more credit.
Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 masterpiece has been
hailed one time or another as one of the finest films of modern times. The epic
war film about the Vietnam War starring Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, and
Martin Sheen, was actually filmed in several areas in Luzon.
Even Philippine weather wanted to make the film shoot unforgettable as one
Typhoon Olga swooped in and wrecked Coppola's movie sets in Iba, Zambales.
Local Ifugaos served as extras in the film, along with a local ritual where a
poor kalabaw was hacked to death by a
machete -- a scene Coppola was lucky to have caught on film.
Francis Ford Coppola directing in Pagsanjan
An Officer and a
Before Richard Gere was picking up prostitutes in Pretty
Woman, he appeared in An Officer and A
Gentleman where he played Zack Mayo, a young man who was living in the
Philippines with his US Navy Officer dad. In the film's opening scene, young
Zack falls victim to petty theft when he gets mugged by some Pinoy toughies
who wanted to "gut that sonuvab*%$^!"
The Filipino medical community was enraged by the US
comedy-drama when in 2007, Teri Hatcher's character Susan Mayer let loose a
racial slur. When her doctor says she might be hitting menopause, she responds
with, "Before we go any further, can I check those diplomas? Cause I want to
make sure they're not from some med school in the Philippines."
Upon violent reactions from Filipinos and Fil-Ams in the medical field, even
from ex-president GMA's Executive Secretary, ABC network issued an apology and recalled
the episode to cut out that line.
Little did loudmouthed Rachel Berry know that this
pint-sized diva has an explosive voice.
Keanu Reeves plays John Constantine, an exorcist who
can communicate with angels and demons. Early in the movie, Constantine tries to rid a possessed girl from a demon when she
says, in Hollywood's go-to demonic voice, "Papatayin natin sila." Woah! The devil speaks Tagalog!
Sasha Baron-Cohen's latest comedy The Dictator didn't spare us Filipinos from straight-up racism and
political incorrectness. Personally, I don't take any offense from liking to
talk, work, and sh*t -- I find it quite accurate, don't you? However, Baron-Cohen could use some tips from Russell Peters on mastering his Asian accents.
Back in 1999, Claire Danes and Kate Beckinsale portrayed
best friends who were caught in a drug bust while on vacation in Thailand.
The movie, Brokedown Palace,
was filmed in several impoverished locations in Manila.
After shooting the movie, Danes told Premiere Magazine that Manila "just f*%$ing smelled of cockroaches. There's no sewage system in Manila,
and people have nothing there. People with, like, no arms, no legs, no eyes, no
teeth. Rats were everywhere." She was also quoted in Vogue describing Manila
as "a ghastly and weird city." Many people reacted violently to her sharp
tongue, including Hollywood A-listers and even then-president Estrada,
who wanted to ban her from setting foot on the Philippines.
And no, we don't mean Survivor Philippines
hosted by Richard Gutierrez. We mean the 25th season of the American
reality show that started it all. It's been a long time coming, but Jeff Probst
and the Survivor team has finally landed on our shores. But they are by no
means the first to set foot on Caramoan to film the reality show. Caramoan is a
favourite for the different franchises of Survivor, including Serbia,
Sweden, and France.
Outwit, outplay, outlast - in any language - is definitely more fun in the Philippines!
As much as you'd like to deny it, Stephanie Meyer's Twilight
is an international bestseller. And somewhere in those pages, she mentions the Danag, a creature taken from Filipino lore. We
don't know how accurately Meyer portrays the danag because most Filipinos
aren't familiar with it themselves. The most we can hope for is that the
vampires this side of the world don't sparkle.
The Bourne Legacy
Even before The Bourne
Legacy was released in cinemas, Filipinos were abuzz when Jeremy Renner and
Rachel Weisz arrived in Manila to film
parts of the movie. I even routed myself through Aurora
Boulevard to catch a glimpse of their shoot.
Unfortunately, all I saw was our everyday tangle of jeepneys, motorcycles, and
buses -- and that's also exactly what went onto the big screen. At the first
mention of Manila, the entire
theatre sniggered with excitement. The gritty portrayal of our city was as true
as they come, sans our security guards speaking with an American twang.
Do you feel the Philippines was wrongly played in some entries in the list? Sound it off below!
South Korean shipbuilder Samsung Heavy Industries has floated a tanker-shaped vessel tagged as the world's largest "floating facility" with a length greater than the height of the Empire State Building. A Samsung spokeswoman said Thursday that the floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) platform -- named "Prelude" -- was set in the water at its southern shipyard in Geoje on November 30. But its specifications are impressive, outstripping the 443-metre tall Empire State Building in New York. …
Butuan City — “Filipinos are being noted as the ‘best’ skilled workers in the world today.” This was how a government official described the ability of workers in the country, as he cited the increasing number of skilled Filipino workers hired by foreign companies, based on the records of the Overseas Workers Welfare and Administration (OWWA), an attached agency of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE). Data showed that the number of skilled workers hired by foreign companies, …
A contraceptive pill for men has moved one step closer after Australian researchers successfully made male mice infertile, according to a study published Tuesday. Monash University scientists genetically modified mice to block two proteins found on the smooth muscle cells which are essential for sperm to travel through the animal's reproductive organs. The result was that even though the mice had sex normally and were otherwise healthy, they were infertile, researcher Sabatino Ventura from …
On Thursday, Pantone, the global color authority and provider of professional color standards, unveiled its pick for 2014, 'radiant orchid'. On Thursday Pantone is due to unveil its first ever clothing line, the Universe Colorwear men's wear collection. Pantone has previously applied its block color swatches to a range of watches, teapots and its famed coffee mugs. …
Security experts have uncovered a trove of some 2 million stolen passwords to websites including Facebook, Google, Twitter and Yahoo from Internet users across the globe. Researchers with Trustwave's SpiderLabs said they discovered the credentials while investigating a server in the Netherlands that cyber criminals use to control a massive network of compromised computers known as the "Pony botnet." The company told Reuters on Wednesday that it has reported its findings to the largest of more …
Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden encouraged Chinese visa applicants to "challenge their government" during a brief meeting at the U.S. embassy in Beijing on Wednesday. Biden, accompanied by Ambassador Gary Locke, waved and greeted hundreds of Chinese queuing at the visa hall. …
The George W. Bush Presidential Center has joined the holiday festivities, offering for sale a Christmas tree ornament that features a painting by the former U.S. head of state. Bush has taken up painting in his retirement, producing still lifes, self portraits and images of animals. …
By Bernard Vaughan and Daniel Wiessner NEW YORK (Reuters) - A U.S. animal rights group on Monday filed what it said is the first lawsuit seeking to establish the "legal personhood" of chimpanzees. The non-profit Nonhuman Rights Project asked a New York state court to declare a 26-year-old chimp named Tommy "a cognitively complex autonomous legal person with the fundamental legal right not to be imprisoned. ... …
Celebrations by Seattle football fans in a Monday night game against the New Orleans Saints were so thunderous that they registered as minor earthquakes on a nearby seismometer, a state university professor said. The most intense rumble came after Seahawks' defensive end Michael Bennett recovered a fumble by New Orleans' quarterback Drew Brees in the first quarter and ran it back for a touchdown, said John Vidale, director of the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network at the University of …
By Ian Simpson WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. military website showing Santa Claus delivering his presents while guarded by warplanes has some children's advocates worried. In a twist to its tradition of tracking an animated version of Santa Claus' sleigh and reindeer as he flies around the globe on December 24, the military is adding the animated fighter plane escort to give a realistic feel to the popular feature, said a spokesman for the North American Aerospace Defense Command. "We wanted …
By Joseph Cortes, VERA Files When Lisa Macuja-Elizalde dances this Sunday, December 8, the role of the Sugar Plum Fairy in Ballet Manila’s production of “The Nutcracker,” she will have formally retired all her major dance roles. It took her … Continue reading → …
By Rizza Marie S. Edu, VERA Files It was a night in September 2005, and Nikki Jurado was only 13. After placing her teddy bear under her blanket and stealing money from her yaya, she grabbed a cab from her … Continue reading → …
By Jonathan P. Jurilla and Hazel P. Villa, VERA Files Photos by Jonathan Jurilla BAROTAC VIEJO, Iloilo – Before typhoon Yolanda struck, the Aetas were looking forward to the ripening of their alamid coffee beans that they expect the civet … Continue reading → …
Last November 29, 2013, the Department of Justice filed the second batch of criminal complaints against Janet Lim-Napoles and 33 others, including former congressman and current Bureau of Customs Commissioner Rozzano Rufino “Ruffy” Biazon. …