Last night, after having dinner with some friends, I watched the Cinemalaya entry, Ang Nawawala. I went to the cinema alone because I want to focus my attention on these kind of films. We also published a review of the movie last Monday so I felt compelled to see it.
What struck me most was the vivid use of cameras. Gibson, the not-so-mute protagonist, kept taking pictures of everything. His mom was also a photographer, while his dad is trying out his new SLR. Taking photos is an attempt to salvage a memory. It is a way to freeze time so that it's more convenient to retrieve them. It is the best thing that we can do to recover what was lost.
Why do we often want to recover these memories? Most of us would say that it gives us joy. Or because we learned something important from it. But some want to keep hold of memories because they have not moved on from the pain of not relieving that experience once more.
Gibson lost something in that movie - too traumatizing that he can't speak (literally) about the death of his twin brother and the guilt that he should have been the one who died. But there was forgiveness in the end. There are days when we just want to disappear. For Gibson, he chose to get disconnected for years. But in the end, we really just want to be found.