Wages of Cinema: Film in Philippine Perspective was published by the University of the Philippines Press in 1998. If ever a publication of mine could have made use of the then-unavailable open-review process, a digital platform would have been it. I’d wanted a long-form writing project that departed significantly from the earlier books, and built up from mostly reviews in the first publication and mostly critiques in the second. On the other hand, UP Press director Laura Samson, whom I’d known since my days as aspiring campus journalist, was helping me conceptualize a volume that would raise recent concerns in film theorizing.
Whenever I decided to subsequently expand any of the materials here, I wound up confirming what I’d known from the beginning: that several of these pieces could stand improvement, and a few of them would never be considered as publishable as when they appeared in the context of their respective designations here. Nevertheless the book, showing up as it did toward the first hundredth year of the Philippine revolution, scored a few “centennial” prizes and distinctions.
I’d originally also prepared an annotated bibliography, drafted for a directed-readings course under my dissertation adviser, the late film historian Robert Sklar. Since it would have occupied the equivalent of three of the regular articles, I decided to retain only the bibliographic entries and look instead for an occasion to restore the fuller file. Unfortunately this was one of the rare moments I was adjusting computer hardware usage – from DOS to late-adapting Windows, with the notorious Iomega ZIP drive as a means of storage, prior to my subscription to an online storage service – and it was too late when I realized that I had deleted the original copies in my regularly emptied home and office hard drives. It wasn’t the first – or even last – time that I had lost an important file, but it was one of a few instances of carelessness that I keep regretting to this day. Since, come to think of it, the book’s final “Selected Bibliography” section overlapped with the individual articles’ lists of works cited, I decided there was no further point in maintaining it here.
Wages of Cinema was the only time a publisher coordinated closely with me in completing a book volume; in 2020, she passed away (though not from the then-raging pandemic) just as I was intensively going over the digital-edition manuscripts of my 1990s publications. Though she didn’t insist on a closing statement from me for the 1998 print edition, I felt that a tribute to her contribution to my growth as a public intellectual should serve as the epilogue that once never was.
The print edition had an introduction by Luis V. Teodoro, then the dean of the national university’s college of mass communication, that read, in part, “Since he began writing in the 1980s, the critical efforts of Joel David have been among the most consistent as well as the most comprehensive, addressing such diverse and necessary concerns as audience response and the Filipino documentary. ¶“Not all academics are necessarily equal to the effort. But in David we have someone whose involvement in and love for the medium have created a body of work that in this particular time both Philippine cinema as well as the study of it sorely needs” (page x). [Book cover design: Arne Sarmiento; book design: Mona Lisa S. Escara; editorial & production supervision: Laura L. Samson; dedicatees: Bliss Lim, Lauren Steimer, Roger Hallas, Theo Pie. For larger image, please click on picture above or below.]
The Digital Edition (2014)
Cover design by Paolo Miguel G. Tiausas
“Bomba” © 2019 by Mina Saha
National Library of the Philippines CIP Data
Wages of cinema : the digital edition / Joel David. — Digital Edition. — Quezon City : Amauteurish Publishing, , © 2014.
ISBN 978-621-96191-3-4 — Digital Edition
Original printed copy published in 1998 as Wages of cinema : contemporary Philippine cinema by UP Press
1. Motion pictures — Philippines. 2. Motion pictures — Philippines — History. I. Title.
“By Way of an Epilogue” © 2020 by Amauteurish Publishing
US Copyright Office Certificate of Registration:
Contents of the Digital Edition
© 2014 by Amauteurish Publishing
All Rights Reserved
[For a PDF scan of the book edition’s preliminaries, click here.]
A Question of Appositeness: Structuralism to Poststructuralism
The Multiple‑Character Film Format
• Nashville (1975)
Genre Pastiche in the Horror Film
• Near Dark (1984)
Auteur Criticism: A Non‑Recuperative Reappraisal
A Cultural Policy Experience in Philippine Cinema
Viable Lessons from another Third‑World Model
Race as Discourse in Southeast Asia Film Ethnographies
• Cannibal Tours (1987)
Ideas on Philippine Film: A Critical Survey
Practice Makes Perfect: Alternative Philippine Cinema
A History of the History of a History‑to‑Be
Gender as Masquerade in the Vietnam‑War Film
• Indochine (1992)
Film in the Light of the “History” of Sexuality
Pornography & Erotica: Boundaries in Dissolution
• In the Realm of the Senses (1975)
• Super 8½ (1995)
Womanliness as (Masculine) Masquerade in Psychoanalytic Film‑Texts
• Dressed to Kill (1980)
• Raising Cain (1992)
Postcolonial Conundrum: Third‑World Film in Perverse Perspective
• Manila by Night (1980)