Members of the community gathered at the American Memorial Park last Friday and Saturday night for the premier of the Man’amko Movie Project, an hourlong movie filmed, edited, directed, and produced by the acting director of the Office on Aging, Walter Manglona.
“The film is a compilation of documentaries, music videos, short films, and comedic skits all performed by our man’amko,” Manglona said. “There is no studio at the Aging Center so I took it [upon] myself and produced the movie at home.”
The movie, mainly in English, showcases the lives of the man’amko at the Aging Center and had people bursting out in laughter at the comedic music videos and skits.
One spectator described it as a “great, fun family film.”
This was not the first time the man’amko starred in their own movie. According to Manglona, he also directed a similar movie a few years ago as the Aging program coordinator.
As for how long it took to make the production, Manglona shared that the man’amko started the project when he came into office a few months ago.
“The Aging Center on island provides acting, drama, and poetry classes to its clients. Instead of doing the regular live performances on stage, this time we wanted to bring it to film,” he said.
Manglona thought it would be a good idea to have the man’amko showcase their lives at the Aging Center with a comedic twist.
The movie later takes a more somber tone, recounting of the struggle of the Chamorros growing up during World War II.
In one segment, a female man’amko told about living in the caves as a little girl.
“We had to hide in the cave during most of the day, and when we thought it was safe at night, one of us would run out to get the food we could find,” she said. “We heard bombs dropping and gun shots everyday.”
The movie also featured some of the island’s most recognizable locations and hotels in Garapan and the main segment of the show narrated a comedic folk tale about a Chamorro man named Pedro Malas.
Teddy Guiao, one of the main actors in the film and who plays the role of Pedro Malas, shared that he did not only enjoy being a part of the movie but that he was glad to see the community supporting the project.
“I would like to thank all of the people who came to see the movie,” Guiao said. “I encourage all the man’amko in their houses to join the Aging Center.”
Guiao, 81, has been a client of the Aging Center for over seven years now.
“I have much experience in comedy, reciting poetry, and acting like Superman,” he said enthusiastically.
The funds raised from the two-night premiere of the Man’amko Movie Project will go toward some of the ongoing projects the Aging Center is currently running, such as buying recreational equipment and computers for the man’amko.