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World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Commanding Vision, Ramona S. Diaz

This stirring vérité portrait takes us into the heart of the planet’s busiest maternity hospital—a world unto itself in the Philippines. Unseen observers in this frenetic and understaffed landscape, we enter hectic birthing rooms and pass through overcrowded hallways bursting with life. Babies are lost and found, and multiple mothers share a single bed.

The camera glides intimately and effortlessly around the hospital, unlocking nuances of this intricate ecosystem. There is a remarkably calm air of acceptance to this tumultuous scene, that can only be understood by a mother on her seventh child. Despite the harsh, unsanitary circumstances a supportive community of women—from doctors and nurses to social workers—makes this world thrive. Imbued with optimism, humor, and a specific type of strength, mothers exit the doors of the hospital and return to the bustling street outside. Through her sensitive documentation of these personal journeys to motherhood, filmmaker Ramona S. Diaz reveals larger truths about the lack of reproductive health care policy in one of the most populous countries in the world.

YEAR 2017


COUNTRY U.S.A./Philippines

RUN TIME 94 min


SUBTITLES Yes with English subtitles


EMAIL global@dogwoof.com


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Artist Bio

Ramona S. Diaz

Ramona S. Diaz is an award-winning Asian American filmmaker best known for her compelling, character-driven documentaries combining an appreciation for cinematic aesthetics and potent storytelling. Her films Spirits Rising, Imelda, The Learning, and Don't Stop Believin’: Everyman's Journey have screened at top-tier festivals including the Sundance Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, and IDFA. Diaz is a Guggenheim Fellowship recipient and has been inducted into the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.