Historian: ‘Magellan’ film a chance for Pinoys to learn more about ancestors

This image is about Magellan flim

An animated film showcasing the Mactan Fight between Filipino hero Lapulapu and Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan is an opportunity for the audience to know more about their ancestors, said Friday the State History Agency.

What we are asking of the public is to be critical and take advantage of the opportunity to find out who our ancestors really were, by reading books on Philippine history, culture and society, or by visiting the National Museum and other museums and galleries alike, said Rene Escalante, Chair of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP).

The department said it values the freedom of expression and does not promote or condemn movies and other forms of art.

The movie “Elcano and Magellan: The First Voyage Around the World,” which narrates Magellan and Basque Juan Sebastián Elcano’s journey and his arrival in Cebu in 1521, received backlash in the wake of the villainous portrayal of Lapulapu and his perceived glorification of the colonizers.

While the movie is “obviously biased” in favor of Spain and its past, the agency said: The same applies to us, Filipinos, in seeing the events that made up the Magellan-Elcano expedition, especially as regards our history as a people.

We are also biased towards our national opinion that Lapulapu is our hero and that Magellan was the vanquished alien intruder, said the NHCP.

The movie is a chance to teach, to think about it for historian Xiao Chua.

The Palace said it was up to the Movie Television Review Classification Board (MTRCB) to determine whether portions of the movie should be banned or removed.

We’re not going to want to challenge the agency’s authority, said presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo.

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