Gangland is about the brutal street war of a juvenile gang and the fascination of the media in the bloody encounters. With knives, cudgels, firearms and video cameras, the youths are going to revenge a dead friend. Peque Gallaga has several times moved across the borders of the genres but more often than not returned to the more spectacular one. He and Lore Reyes have taken advantage of the disorder around censorship that occurred after the disappearance of the Marcos from power. In Scorpio Nights everything was shown through sexual sequences (pornography's constant excuse), In Deliryo the love of the two young people is channeled through the commercial they are taking part in. Gangland takes a further step. Critics have reacted against the many and long scenes of violence and the abrupt, blurred video pictures. But above all the moralizing and sentimental note provoked quite a few western critics. In doing so they have missed what the film is about. This is a Philippine Young and Dangerous, with the same romanticism about the solidarity within the gang and the same wallowing in fights. Like the Hong Kong models Gangland wants to show how friendship and loyalty function within the gangs. Violence is neither the goal nor the means but the perverted drawback of the solidarity. When the media claw into the the gang fights then the fatal ratification becomes complete. Perhaps one can see the gang's own video-filming as an attempt to create its own picture of life. If it is actually different from the spectacular film is a different issue.

Peque Gallaga, Lore Reyes
97 min
Asian Images
Ryan Eigenmann, Junell Hernando
Vic Del Rosario Jr
Erik Matti, Lore Reyes
Jose Gentica V

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