Upon his father's death, Florante, a classically trained guitarist returns to the Philippines after 12 years of absence. During his stay he rediscovers the music of harana - a long-forgotten tradition of Filipino serenading when men sang under the window at night to fearlessly declare their love for a woman.
Intent on unearthing these unheralded songs, Florante travels to the remote provinces where he discovers three of the last surviving practitioners - a farmer, a fisherman and a tricycle driver. Astounded by their golden voices, Florante asks them to travel with him to perform and record these unknown songs. During their travels, the haranistas meet Brian, a shy young man who for years has been secretly in love with a schoolmate. The haranistas, who have not serenaded in the last thirty years, offered their services to serenade Brian's object of affection, resulting in one of the most tender moments of genuine harana captured on film.
Word soon spread around Manila of leathery faced men whose style of untrained but sincere and expressive singing touch the hearts everywhere they performed, culminating in a series of triumphant live performances - from the small village to prestigious concert halls to recording the first authentic harana album in the last fifty years. But the question remains - can harana be restored to its former glory or is it doomed to vanish silently into the night forever?
HARANA is a treasure trove of beautiful Filipino music awaiting to be rediscovered. Intent on preserving vanishing customs, the film rekindles a connection with the past before it is irrevocably lost, and portrays a side of the Philippines rarely seen on the screen.
Official UK and Irish trailer for MYSTERY ROAD, in cinemas from 29th August 2014.
From award-winning director Ivan Sen (“Beneath Clouds”, “Toomelah”), MYSTERY ROAD is a powerful and intelligent modern-day take on the Western, with strong social and political commentary.
When Aboriginal detective Jay Swan returns to his home town to solve the brutal murder of a teenage girl, he is immediately thrown into a web of lies and deceit. Alienated by the white-dominated police force to which he is attached and ostracised by the local Indigenous community, Jay must stand alone and attempt to unravel the truth before tensions boil over.
Beautifully shot and featuring a stellar Australian ensemble cast including Aaron Pedersen (“The Circuit”), Hugo Weaving (“The Hobbit”, “Lord of the Rings”, “The Matrix”), Jack Thompson (“The Great Gatsby”, “Australia”, “Star Wars: Episode II”) and Ryan Kwanten (“True Blood”), MYSTERY ROAD will keep you guessing until its nail-biting and action-packed conclusion.