(Judge Feliciano Belmonte Sr. High School)
Our taste for gender equality remarkably transpires in all aspects of our daily existence. In fact, during the time of President Arroyo, the Magna Carta for Women was signed in order to define gender discrimination and outline the approaches to eliminate it. In the larger field, stated in International Planned Parenthood Federation website (www.ippf.org), the United Nations regards gender equality as a human right, and it was further pointed out that empowering women is an indispensable tool for advancing development and reducing poverty. Truthfully, we have shown our passion to advocate respect and consideration for all genders in every possible context. Even in the film industry, we are zooming in with regard to gender egalitarianism.
The recently held Metro Manila Film Festival displayed various master-pieces that successfully showcased the world class caliber of the Philippine movie industry and above all its versatility, as the films encompassed a wide range of “flavors” that would each suit the preference of the public—ranging from fantasy, comedy, drama, epic, suspense, societal figure, family oriented, etc. Nonetheless, the apparent common denominator among the motion pictures is their touch of gender equality.
The film My House Husband by the blockbuster couple (Ryan and Judy Ann) exhibited one of the most delicate issues in our community. The film mainly focused on the couple’s struggle to earn a living for their family and the issue of women conforming to men’s description of value, men holding the macho role and the reversal of roles. In one of the scenes, Rod (Ryan Agoncillo) gave up his job as a bank manager for some reasons and started to look for another work.
Meanwhile, his wife Mia (Judy Ann Santos), a part-time insurance agent, soon got promoted into a much higher and demanding position and eventually became the lone breadwinner of the family. As Rod continued to search for employment which at first he failed to do, the insecurities slowly crawled up on him as he felt the inequality in their predicament. This aspect of the film greatly manifests not only its being plausible but, most importantly, the issue of equality within the household between the two genders. The couple from time to time find themselves circling into arguments that in truth are futile efforts of trying to establish the dominance over each other, consequently, senseless discussion.
The movie later on reached the turning point in which the husband came to a realization that his wife is not just as good as a housewife but rather a partner in life. As the lines from the movie articulates: “Partners po kami. Pinag-uusapan po naming dalawa yung gagawing desisyon. This takes its congruence with UNICEF’s description of gender equality that women and men, girls and boys, should enjoy the same rights, resources, opportuni-ties and protections.
In the latter part of the movie, Rod was able to secure a job for himself and more importantly demonstrated an understanding that a couple could both equally strive for the whole family.
Come to think of it. The question is not who is better than the other. It is not whose gender is more superior. It is the realization that we were all created equally and we ought to co-exist with the utmost thought and value for each other. In one of the verses of the Bible (Isaiah 43:6: I will say to the north and south, bring my sons and daughters back to Israel from the distant corners of the earth.), it was clearly emphasized that both genders are treated likewise. And after all, the Creator provides all.
The success of the film industry does not only depend on visual effects and craftsmanship, but also in the demonstration of awareness of the impartiality and open-mindedness in manifesting gender fairness. The empowerment of both genders is an important task arranged for the different institutions in society—the school, church and home.
Accomplishment of gender equality signifies success for humanity.
Your FEEDBACK can be posted at www.filmacademyphil.org/forum/