The documentary filmmaker Marty Syjuco discusses the film he’s produced, Give Up Tomorrow, screening at the Vancouver International Film Festival, a chronicle of Paco Larrañaga, a young man wrongfully accused of murder in The Philippines, with Joseph Planta.
Text of introduction by Joseph Planta:
I am Planta: On the Line, in Vancouver at TheCommentary.ca.
Tomorrow and Friday at the Vancouver International Film Festival screens a fascinating, important documentary, Give Up Tomorrow. It’s about a young man in the Philippines, Paco Larrañaga, half-Spanish, half-Filipino who’s sent to death row for a crime he didn’t commit. Two sisters in Cebu, an island nearly 600 kilometres from Manila, Marijoy Choing and Jacqueline Choing disappear in 1997. At the time of their alleged disappearance, rape and murder, Larrañaga was elsewhere, which some 35 witnesses have testified to.
Over the years, I’ve indulged my interest in the Philippines by talking about its politics, history and its culture with various guests. With my guest now, the film’s producer, Marty Syjuco, we’ll talk about this case, what happened, how the country dealt with capital punishment, how corruption and the media twist things beyond recognition. I’ll ask Mr. Syjuco about the politics involved, the lives lost and the incarceration which continues to this day, albeit in Spain. It’s an interesting journey. Mr. Syjuco’s brother is married to Mr. Larrañaga’s sister, but beyond that, this film is a fair, sobering account of Larrañaga’s fight for justice. The movie screens tomorrow night, Friday afternoon, and there’s an additional screening next Thursday morning. Check out www.viff.org for more information. The website for the movie is at www.pacodocu.com. It’s already won awards at the Tribeca Film Festival. Please welcome to the Planta: On the Line program, Marty Syjuco; Good morning, Mr. Syjuco.