Urban Anxieties in Davao Horror Short Films

Katrina Ross Andal Tan, Laurence Marvin S. Castillo

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


    The essay examines how horror shor t f ilms produced by independent
    filmmakers based in Davao City in southern Philippines function as imaginative
    mediations of urban anxieties in the region. Discussing f irst existing
    scholarship on Philippine horror cinema, the essay then maps the emergence
    of regional filmmaking in contemporary independent cinema before briefly
    touching on the ways Filipino mainstream and independent films construct
    urban spaces. As the analysis shows, the horror short films articulate people’s
    anxieties over socio-economic and political realities experienced in Davao,
    such as extrajudicial killings, enactment of a pioneering anti-discrimination
    ordinance, urban diaspora, and cosmopolitanism. In addition, they reveal
    people’s complex views and attitudes towards urbanization and modernity
    against the specter of rurality in Davao City. The paper argues that these
    films imagine, not just the uneasy position of a regional city in the national
    topography shaped by the socio-economic operations of globalization, but
    also the anxiety of a Third World formation hounded by the specter of uneven
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-23
    Number of pages23
    JournalHumanities Diliman
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2019

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