Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Deathly Hallows New Trailer and Pottermore

A New Trailer

“It is my hope that the last installment to the movie series would make the thrill and excitement last.”

Just a few hours after posting my blog entry about the Deathly Hallows movie, I chanced upon a new trailer of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 which was released just last week. And it is one of the breath-taking trailers I’ve seen yet. I wonder if they would be releasing more in the next four weeks.

For those who have read the book version of Death Hallows, this new trailer shows important scenes from the story. To mention a few:

1) Lily Potter talking to Harry presumably before she was killed by Lord

2) the quidditch play area being burned by Death Eaters,

3) Dementors attacking Hogwarts,

4) Snape saying “You kept him alive so they could die at the proper moment”; thi
s is one heck of a spoiler especially if you have read the book; this scene is actually from Snape's memory given to Harry; in there Dumbledore was explaining things to Snape regarding the connection between Voldemort and Harry and how both or either would die,

5) Professor McGonagall commanding the statues in Hogwarts to de
fend them from the Death Eaters,

6) the coming of Voldemort and his Death Waters prior to the attack of Hogwarts; on one side we can see some of the students from the Slytherin house, 7) Harry talking to Remus Lupin, James Potter, Lily Potter, Sirius Black just before he surrendered himself to Voldemort to be killed; it is worth taking note that they are solid beings, not disembodied ones; it goes only to show the power of the Resurrection Stone – to bring back to life those who are dead.

Upon seeing this trailer, my excitement to see the movie has just become more intense.


Another news I picked up on the internet is this mysterious website pottermore.com in which two owls, a “Coming Soon” message, and J.K. Rowling’s signature are shown. The owls are links to a YouTube Channel detailing a countdown to Rowling’s announcement of her upcoming project. It was not a book not or anything related to the Deathly Hallows Part 2 movie. But whatever it is, it is sure to get worldwide attention. Indeed, the world isn’t over yet with Harry Potter.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Manning the Boundaries: the Spratlys Issue

I don’t usually buy newspapers on Sundays as the office in which I work has a steady supply of them. But because it was Rizal’s birthday I thought it better to get a PDI Sunday issue for I was sure that there would be a number of articles about him.

And so it came as a surprise when the headlines shouted about our resolve to defend the Spratlys (‘We’ll defend what is ours’, Philippine Daily Inquirer Sunday, June 19, 2011, pp.A1, A20). And our defense of the disputed seas took the form of a World War II warship named BRP Rajah Humabon. The news was quite comical and lamentable at the same time. Comical because one cannot expect that a lone warship could defend a large area of water. And lamentable because it only shows the poor and deteriorating state of our Navy and of our military in general.

Official statements issued every now and then by the Palace are only good on paper and for the media. But it will all benefit us to realize now that we will very vulnerable when things worsen. War is something we cannot afford. Not in this time of idealism in the country championed by the present administration. Resolution through diplomacy? Well, perhaps it is the safest way for now. Although it is uncertain whether China would be as diplomatic out there on the sea as they in front of the people and the media.

In the end it gives us this message that in upholding and defending out sovereignty, we really have to be realistic, see things as they are, and not babble about false courage or confidence. We are only extinguishing the trust placed by the people to the government.

Photo Credit: newsinfo.inquirer.net

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Ever-Relevant Jose Rizal

A hundred and fifty years ago, a boy was born in a town called a stove and a jar. His life from there until the time he took the fatal bullet(s) from the muskets in his execution is still thriving up to this present time. A life that has become a strong motto stella for the Filipinos. A life whose activities paved the way for the societal changes in the late nineteenth century. A life that proves to be still relevant to those who continue to seek and hope to make changes in our malleable and fragile society.

Rizal has made his life relevant for the country and its future. And I wish that such thought would prevail as we join in today’s celebrations. We may not be able to reach Rizal’s stature as a rallying cry for most of the people, but we can from this moment be able to start and do our own part to serve and be relevant for the country.

Rizal indeed was and is a hero. We might as well follow his footsteps.

* this blog entry also appears in Back Trails blog

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Anticipating the ‘Deathly Hallows’

It will be only a month-long wait before Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 will be finally shown in cinemas. Much of the excitement was built up by two recently released trailers for the movie which contain quite a number of spoilers. I don’t know whether they were intentional or not.

Reading through the seven Harry Potter books has been a good reading experience. And the film adaptations certainly made the details from the book more vivid and breath-taking. Although many of the subplots found in the books were not shown in their film version, the movie series did make it a point to make the storylines thrilling and exciting.

It is my hope that the last installment to the movie series would make the thrill and excitement last.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Nourishing Our Philippine Independence

This day undoubtedly will be filled again with speeches, applauses, and scents of wreaths. It is our 113th year of independence and we should be thankful that we reached this far. However, I think we should all go beyond the predictable speeches and pomp accorded to this day. I believe we should look forward and think how we can further sustain our independence.

Look around. We have right now an unhampered access to the internet, something that is possible in other countries. On the internet, we have different platforms to express our views, share stories, even engage in discourse in practically anything under the sun – the wars in the Middle East, the power expansion of those who see their nations as superpowers, love, scandals, showbiz rumors, you name it. We also have all sorts of fashion for both men and women – clothing, shoes, and bags to satisfy the people’s cravings. We have newspapers. We have the right to vote. We have a country we can proudly say our own. We have a national language. All these things – both the serious and the fad – trace their roots in the bloody years of the Revolution, when the so-called indios, fired by a budding concept of a nation, rose against foreign rulers, the Spaniards. Of course there came the Americans along with their glorified Manifest Destiny and the Japanese and their vision of Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. But it is only fitting to celebrate our independence on June 12. For it marks a celebration of our release from bondage to the Spaniards, and of our release from an archipelagic comatose to finally realize that we can build a country of our own.

We should also go beyond the Propagandists in Spain (Marcelo del Pilar, Graciano Lopez Jaena, Jose Rizal, etc.), the Katipunan (Andres Bonifcaio, Emilio Jacinto, etc.) and the others (Emilio Aguinaldo, Gregorio del Pilar, etc.). The big names in history were not the only ones who committed to the cause of obtaining our freedom. There are many others, nameless fighters who fought with the most primitive of weapons compared to the weaponries of the Spaniards, and they all should be honored together with the celebration of our Independence. They must be honored not only on National Heroes Day. Their blood was shed for us to have this Independence Day. To all unnamed warriors of the revolution we owe our present freedom, our present independence.

In the end, perhaps I have been quite unclear as to what my point is. But I say this: much of what we enjoy today was paid through the bloody battles of the past. We should be grateful to them (the revolutionaries) even at least for this day. Today’s celebration must not be only festive in nature. It should also be grateful, thankful. Independence came at a price. Our forefathers did that for their progenies. It is our turn to make the necessary payments and sacrifices to extend this independence for future generations. After all we are all benefitting from it.

Patuloy na itaguyod at pahalagahan ang ating kalayaan. Ipagbunyi ang ating kalayaan!

* This entry also appears at Back Trails Blog

Monday, June 6, 2011

Classes Starts Today

Snarls of tricycle and jeepney engines in the early morning.
Heavier traffic.
More street vendors selling rags, sweets, street foods, etc.
These are but a few of the glaring signs that classes are at their commencement already. Free times are over for the children and all days from now on will be filled with notes, books, and lessons.

I’m not usually affected by such thing as resumption of classes. But due to one instance when we were able to catch an evening news about the upcoming resumption of classes and the great reluctance (and disbelief) of my sister that she is already coming back to school, I thought it better to look around and observe how things fare at the start of the June classes.

In Manila Bulletin’s June 6, 2011 issue, a short data on the estimates of Department of Education (DepEd) was discussed (“Campus boom: DepEd, CHEd expect 28-M students”, Manila Bulletin, June 6, 2011, Vol. 462, No. 06, pp.1,6): 22.5 million students shall attend different public elementary and high schools while 3.56 million students shall attend private schools. On the other hand, 2.6 million students shall attend different higher education institutes (HEIs) in the country. The country is indeed abuzz with all those students.

Meanwhile, DepEd’s K+12 program – the plan to add two more years to the country’s basic education program – is on the hot seat again (K+12 no answer to education woes, say bishops”, Philippine Daily Inquirer, June 6, 2011, Vol. 26, No. 178, p.A4). Oppositions abound in this government endeavor and people seem to assume the role of preachers again; they all have something to say about the issue.

Anyway for now I think let us allow the students to settle first and adapt to their new set of classes and subjects. Goodluck sa inyo!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

New June and Revolutionizing Thoughts

Trala, how sweet are the days of June
When earth and sky seem to be in tune
The happy days of the year are all here
To feel our hearts with (cheers)!

This short song I learned during my elementary school days still plays in my mind as June comes. Perhaps the merry lines of the song pertain to the refreshing rainy days and the start of schooling. That is more for the little ones. As for the older ones (me included) the coming of the new season can be welcomed with new thoughts. I have been reading David Cooper’s book entitled “A Grammar of Living” and it has been sharing to me novel and revolutionizing ideas which I cannot imagine figuring out on my own. To discuss even an overview of the contents of the book would do injustice to the writer. I can only recommend a direct reading of the book. With the coming of June and all the uncertainties of the rest of the year, I face them all with restructured resolve, if not optimism.