{Watch, Read, & Listen} Aswang, Unconquerable Sun, & Bayli

Jul 20, 2020

♥ watch, read & listen is a weekly feature where I share and recommend
my current movie, book, music and podcast obsessions every monday. ♥

Watch: Aswang (2019)

“Aswang” is a term in the Philippines for witches, vampires, ghosts and werewolves—a collection of evil spirits that feature heavily in myths and popular films. But since President Rodrigo Duterte took office, they have been appearing in real life on the streets of Manila.

In Duterte’s drug war, death squads have shot, tortured and kidnapped tens of thousands of drug users, dealers and innocent bystanders over the past three years. Duterte gives police officers free rein to use brutal violence, which is particularly directed at the poorest sections of society. According to Amnesty International, this amounts to state terror and crimes against humanity.

Aswang follows a group of people whose lives have been caught up in these events: a journalist who tries to make a stand against lawlessness, a coroner, a missionary brother who comforts bereaved family members, and a street kid with parents in prison and friends in the cemetery. The film is a shocking account of unprecedented violence and the moral bankruptcy of a regime that still enjoys support from voters.

Directed by Alyx Ayn G. Arumpac

TW: murder, blood, mutilation of corpses, violence, torture, guns

If you can stomach the trigger warnings, you can watch the trailer here. These are real events and policies the Philippines are going through under the Duterte regime and recently, their government just passed the Anti-Terrorism Law that can tag any Filipino who expresses their Right to Dissent as "terrorists."

It's another law that puts more Filipinos in danger while the on-going drug war is simultaneously occurring. Please take 5 minutes of your free time to sign petitions, email Philippine lawmakers, donate what you can, and help amplify Filipino voices. Demand their government to veto the Anti-Terrorism Law.

Read: Unconquerable Sun by Kate Elliott 🌈


Princess Sun has finally come of age.

Growing up in the shadow of her mother, Eirene, has been no easy task. The legendary queen-marshal did what everyone thought impossible: expel the invaders and build Chaonia into a magnificent republic, one to be respected—and feared.

But the cutthroat ambassador corps and conniving noble houses have never ceased to scheme—and they have plans that need Sun to be removed as heir, or better yet, dead.

To survive, the princess must rely on her wits and companions: her biggest rival, her secret lover, and a dangerous prisoner of war.

Take the brilliance and cunning courage of Princess Leia—add in a dazzling futuristic setting where pop culture and propaganda are one and the same—and hold on tight:

This is the space opera you’ve been waiting for.

Listen: boys lie -- BAYLI 🌈

Friendly reminder that Black Lives still matter and Black Lives Matter protests are still happening across the U.S. and the world, and it's imperative to continue supporting the movement. Keep signing petitions (updated often), donate if/when you can, protest safely, calling/emailing your reps + AG's, and register to vote. Undercover Feds are kidnapping protestors off the streets in Portland, Oregon (it's as Gestapo as it sounds) and taking them to undisclosed locations and they need our help. More ways to help support Black people and the movement can be found on BLM's official Linktree.
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