Founder of Mahakarya Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Anak Hajah Nurul Amal Munjiatul Athirah binti Pengiran Sura Negara Pengiran Anak Haji Muhammad Bey Muntassir in a group photo with Deputy Permanent Secretary (Tourism) at the MPRT Wardi bin Haji Mohammad Ali, Charge D’Affaires from the Philippines Embassy in Brunei Darussalam Consul Pete Raymond V Delfin, Brunei’s first international female director Siti Kamaluddin, Kita-Kita film director Sigrid Bernardo, member of Filipino Film Critic Dr Roland Tolentino
A memento from the Embassy of the Philippines to Sit Kamaluddin
I’m such a movie fan!! Yesterday, I caught three movies and two of them are Filipino movies – Sonata and Kita-Kita, made possible by Mahakarya Institute of Arts and the Philippines Embassy in Brunei Darussalam. Ok, the other movie was Bumblebee but I shall focus on the Filipino movies since it’s the Brunei Film Blitz season. This is coming to the second week of @bruneifilmblitz and it has simply been amazing from the beginning.
Yesterday was the showcase of Filipino movies at Film Blitz. The audience had the privilege to watch three movies produced from the Philippines – Kakabakaba Ka Ba?, Sonata and Kita-Kita. My favourite was Kita-Kita though I have not caught Kakabakaba Ka Ba?
Yesterday the Embassy of the Philippines in Brunei Darussalam marked the 100 years of Philippine cinema in conjunction with the second edition of the Brunei Film Blitz 2018.
Attending the event were Founder of Mahakayra Institute of Arts, Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Anak Hajah Nurul Amal Munjiatul Athirah binti Pengiran Sura Negara Pengiran Anak Haji Muhammad Bey Muntassir, , Deputy Permanent Secretary (Tourism) at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism, Wardi bin Haji Mohammad Ali, Charge D’Affaires from the Philippines Embassy in Brunei Darussalam Consul Pete Raymond V Delfin, Brunei’s first international female director Siti Kamaluddin, Kita-Kita film director Sigrid Bernardo, member of Filipino Film Critic Dr Roland Tolentino and Entertainment Editor of the Philippine Daily Enquirer Rito Asilo.
According to Consul Pete Raymond, the Philippine movie industry is one of the most influential phenomena in the Philippines as it provides not just commercial value but also employment and milestones.
It was nice to see the director of Kita-Kita Sigrid Bernado in Brunei who will also helped with the masterclasses as part of the Film Blitz workshop. She will share bits and pieces of her independent movie that became a multimillion box office success and talk on her special director’s cut of Kita-Kita and why she had two versions of Kita-Kita, where the other was a commercial release.
For more information for the scheduling of the workshops and power up classes, you can click here for bookings. Each of the workshop costs BND 20 and you will learn things such as Director DNA, Talking Pictures, Sonic Cinemascapes, Filming on a Budget, Directing Actors for the Screen and lastly, the 96 Hour Film Blitz Survival Class.
Sigrid Bernardo the director and Maria the film editor of Kita-Kita
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Hjh Nurul Akmar Hj Md Jaafar, Head of Retail Banking, BIBD, showcasing a sneak peek of BIBD NEXGEN Wallet (NFC) which will kick off in January 2019
As part of BIBD’s efforts to support the de-cashing of the economy (meaning less reliance on real cash in hand), BIBD has already introduced digital conveniences such as BIBD Quickypay for QR code payments (introduced a few months ago), BIBD vCard or Virtual MasterCard, its MasterCard Contactless and Visa payWave under its BIBD NEXGEN platform.
There is still room for growth in this department and BIBD will soon up their game by using NFC (Near Field Communication) where all you need is tapping your smartphone only. This is quite common in the US and UK and even in China. This is where BIBD will come in as a pioneer by introducing BIBD NEXGEN Wallet.
This will be made possible once their next BIBD app version will be available in January 2019. It will be synced from the user’s debit or virtual cards to the NEXGEN Wallet which means you don’t have to fork out your debit cards and simply tap your smartphone on the payment terminal.
Hjh Nurul Akmar Hj Md Jaafar, Head of Retail Banking, BIBD, said that all the customers have to do is place or tap your smartphone on the terminal and it will automatically open the BIBD app and it will prompt you for a pin number. After being verified, the transaction will be complete. The cool thing about the BIBD NEXGEN Wallet is that it can function without internet, for purchases up to BND 100.
This is something many will be looking forward to and furthermore, BIBD is well prepared as most of their existing merchants have card terminals which are able to receive NFC payment. Awesome!! The only thing is that the NFC service will only be available for Android users. As for IOS users (Apple), BIBD will be in talks with Apple in hoping that NFC can be readied for BIBD users on IOS.
This is the way of the future indeed and I hope the traction will be higher once NFC become available in Brunei and thank you to BIBD for pioneering this technological move.
The next update of the BIBD App will have the NFC option
The crowd trickling in to check out the Mercedes-Benz models over the weekend. Yes, Jati Transport Autohaus showroom is open on weekends for customer viewing with refreshments included.
Mercedes-Benz is cruising toward the holiday season with great deals on selected car and SUV in its lineup including the C-Class, SLC, GLC, GLA, etc.
These models come with features including Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto which allow the media system to display selected apps stored in your handphone, including navigation.
From now until end of the year, Merceds-Benz Autohaus has extended the showroom opening hours over the weekend, 10am to 4pm. The extended opening hours are aimed at providing an added luxury by being able to visit at a time of their preference.
The test drive will be available for most the latest Mercedes-Benz models including A-Class, one of the best sellers of 2018. I have test driven the car and it’s one of the best rides of 2018. Trust me 😀
Nabil Abd Kadir and I gave Aquaman a thumbs up
So have DC Extended Universe redeemed themselves for the lackluster product (Justice League, Dawn of Justice, Suicide Squad)? Many would say that Aquaman could potentially be the deal breaker for DCEU in terms of its success and also the reception it will receive from movie-goers. I’m for one wasn’t all that thrilled when I watched all the trailers of Aquaman. I just happened to love movies so it was a no-brainer that I will eventually watch Aquaman.
Out went Zack Synder whom I really loved with his previous works such as Watchmen and 300. His influence on the DCEU have been so mediocre and I’m glad the studio decide to bring a fresher director and now we have James Wan who is well known for movies like the Conjuring 1 and 2 and let’s not forget, he directed his biggest movie to date in terms of box office revenue – Fast and the Furious 7. So to have him on board for Aquaman brings a fresher look on things and did he deliver on all fronts?
The Good. This, I have to agree, that having James Wan to direct an already troubled studio for DCEU, was a bold move but a better decision. The movie delivered higher than my expectations as I had reservations from their trailers. This is one of the those movies where you can excuse some of its cheesiness (many layers too) and also its silliness (aplenty). Other than that, I had a blast with Nabil who also gave an encouraging feedback because we both shared the same sentiments when it comes to the DCEU.
The half-Atlantean Arthur Curry aka Aquaman was played by Jason Momoa whom we all are familiar with from the Game of Thrones series. There were times his physique was purposely used to woo the female audience which I thought weren’t necessary. He was a much better representation of a superhero character and something that Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill lacked in this department.
I was also drawn by Mera, a princess from Atlantis played by Amber Heard (hottie) but I felt the movie tends to sexualize her presence on screen though it’s a PG rated film. It must have been all those subtle curves that raced the blood to our hearts :p I was surprised to see Nicole Kidman on screen and there was too much CGI on her to make her look youthful.
As for the storyline and action sequences, it was commendable. Perhaps, many would talked about the final act of the movie which was a huge improvement from an already well-received DCEU movie, Wonder Woman. Yes, this one I would agree and I would give an extra point for this.
And lastly, for the Good part, is the CGI effects on Aquaman. It wasn’t as messy and eye sore like that in Dawn of Justice and Man of Steel especially in the battle scenes. Even the portrayal of Atlantis was visually ambitious and stunning. Yea, yea, there were times when the CGI can be problematic and reminded me of our hit local movie, Bodyman. Kidding, kidding, but I was just saying how it wasn’t up to a blockbuster kind of CGI.
The Bad. Well, it’s a DCEU movie, right? Many could have gone wrong but it didn’t. James Wan managed to fix those broken pieces in DCEU but I can still feel the cheesiness and cringeworthy moments in Aquaman. It was almost at borderline but I was glad it didn’t go to Twilight level.
The silly moments were tolerable but I wasn’t totally affected by it. Definitely no “Martha” kind of materials in Aquaman. If you were to analyze this movie as much as I did, you will probably know what I am referring to on those silly moments. I guess the screen writers (Will Beall, David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick) could have work better on this and I wouldn’t mind increasing my rating for this movie.
Like I said before, Aquaman has its silly moment, campy at times but it was a ridiculous fun ride.
The Ugly. I have no comments on this because I truly enjoyed this film from beginning to the end.
Final verdict: A movie that all of you should dived in to :p because it’s gonna be a great swim till the end. Rano’s score: 8/10 Nabil Abdul Kadir: 8.5/10
Aquaman on Rotten Tomatoes so far
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Brunei Darussalam hosted the Asia Mountain Bike (MTB) Series 2018 at the Berakas Forest Reserve Recreational Park last weekend. Registration for the race is open to all Asian riders (as per passport). Points are collected through a series of races hosted by different Asian countries sanctioned by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI).
Brunei is the eighth Asian country to host the Asian MTB Series this year that began in Philippines in March and will end in Tambunan, Sabah, Malaysia. Prior to Brunei, the race was held in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia. All races are sanctioned by the UCI or National Cycling Federation.
One of the aims of the race is to provide a platform for Asian riders to gain racing experience and UCI points while creating more arenas for mountain bike riders to compete.
The Brunei edition of the Asian MTB Series 2018 is co-organised by BDCF and Wonderworks Management Services in conjunction with the Brunei December Festival 2018.
One of the sponsors of the event was Peugeot (Brunei).
Mr. Santosh Kumar Sahoo, General Manager of Yashoda Hospital, Dr. (Prof) Balachandran Menon, Director of Liver Transplant of Yashoda Institute of Liver Transplant & Hepatobiliary Diseases, Dr. Kabeer Meera Saheeb, Medical Director of Jerudong Park Medical Centre and Mr. Varghese Paulose, Chief Operating Officer of Jerudong Park Medical Centre during the press conference on establishing organ transplant around in Borneo region
It is a great movement to announce, living donor liver transplantation facility is soon made available in Brunei Darussalam through Jerudong Park Medical Centre (JPMC) and Yashoda Hospitals, India.
As we all know Yashoda Hospitals is with one of best track record for best organ transplant program and since three decades, Yashoda Group of Hospitals has evolved as a centre of excellence in medicine providing the highest quality standards of medical treatment to patients.
“This partnership will further improve the quality and effectiveness of health care for all Bruneians and make Brunei Darussalam among one of the medical tourism destination for quality patient care, we are committed to provide an optimal treatment and to ensure that all our patients have the most pleasant stay possible at JPMC.” said Mr. Varghese Paulose, Chief Operating Officer of JPMC. “JPMC provides the most effective health care services, as well as individual attention and personal dedication from doctors and staff who foster patient’s confidence and hope.” he added.
“This joint medical partnership will bring a team of highly trained specialists with many decades of combined experience and continues a tradition of excellence with leading-edge health care capabilities, a team of experienced professionals, a team approach to patient care designed for your comfort, hope and most important of all, healing.” said Dr. Kabeer Meera Saheeb, Medical Director of JPMC. “This joint venture involves local medical and nursing personals. There will be technology transfer over 5 years for the advancements of surgical intensive care, radiological and laboratory services.” added Dr. Kabeer.
The Liver Transplant facility at JPMC, the clinical pathway jointly offers by Yashoda Group of Hospitals, India and JPMC.
Ministry of Health, Brunei Darussalam will be involved actively in pre-operative evaluation and screening for liver transplants and post-operative management to improve health for successful liver transplant outcomes.
The doctors from Yashoda Hospital, Jerudong Park Medical Centre and RIPAS hospital coordinates the care for optimal pre and post-operative treatment.
To support the transplant care, JPMC will have a transplant coordinator who will work closely with doctors, patients, relative and donor throughout transplant care.
“Adult patients with end-stage liver diseases such as liver cirrhosis, liver cancer and acute fulminant hepatic failures and pediatric patients with congenital liver cirrhosis, biliary atresia, and metabolic liver diseases are all indications for liver transplantation. Whether or not recipients are good candidates for liver transplantation is determined by examining and analyzing each patient’s medical condition and characteristics.” said Dr. (Prof) Balachandran Menon, Director of Liver Transplant of Yashoda Institute of Liver Transplant & Hepatobiliary Diseases.
Dr Balachandran highlighted, “The liver is an organ that can be transplanted in part or in whole. Patients can receive a portion of the liver from family members. The donor’s remaining liver regenerates, allowing for the donor to lead a normal healthy life without risks. A donor and recipient must be of similar build and should have compatible blood types, and possibility for donation is determined after thorough examinations. A donor whose liver functions are normal and healthy is qualified as a donor candidate as long as the liver is without illness, infection and cancer.”
How long the patient’s need to be hospitalized
Patients will stay in the hospital for around three to five weeks after liver transplantation and will have regular outpatient visits after discharge. To prevent complications of organ transplantation, all patients must take an immunosuppressant drug every day.
It’s pretty cool to see JPMC offering such services which will kick off hopefully in the first quarter of 2019. The specalists from Yashoda Group of Hospitals saw the opportunity to collaborate with JPMC and this will also help to bring international patients to Brunei waters which provides a great environment especially for recovery. It was also mentioned that the liver donor is ideally between the age of 18 to 50.
Did you know that our liver even cut in half can still grow in a whole liver overtime? Interesting. So it makes sense why liver can be transplanted to another person just as long as the liver has no complications.
Mingling with the doctors
Jonathan Chong, representative from ThunderX3 Brunei with Zul Abdul Rahman, Marketing Executive of Concepts Computer during the launch of the new models of the ThunderX3 chairs at Brilliance Hall, Concepts Computer earlier this morning
Check out the new ThunderX3 BC1 and BC3 gaming chairs at Concepts Computer. I just tried it and I am already thinking of investing on it after the renovation of my entertainment room is completed. These chairs are of great comfort and support and it’s not just ideal for gamers but even someone like me who spent hours in front of a desktop.
It has a minimalist style the can appeal to both working or gaming environment. They are equipped with high-end AIR Technology that helps to create better breathability and these chairs help to provide cool and refreshing experiences especially during long gaming experience, or in my case, surfing and youtubing haha.
Three colors are available for the ThunderX3 BC1 – Cyan on Black, Red on Black or all Black. These chairs are now priced at BND 230 as part of the Brunei salebration. The usual price was BND 275 and comes with a one-year warranty.
The newer models – ThunderX3 BC3 comes in two colours – Red and Cyan. These are priced at BND 330 and also comes with 1 year warranty. The usual price is BND 375. So it’s a great time to invest in these minimalist chairs which provide both comfort and experience.
Now here’s a special deal for all Rano360.com readers. All you have to do is mention my name and you will get BND 10 Concepts Computer voucher after purchasing either the ThunderX3 BC1 or the ThunderX3 BC3 chairs. Cool, aye? And the BND 10 voucher will have a validity of 30 days. So don’t be shy to mention my name “Ranoadidas” when you purchase these models.
According to Jonathan Chong, representative from ThunderX3 Brunei, his company is very pleased to be working alongside Concepts Computer especially with the wide variety of IT products and services provided. He believed Brunei gamers who require longer hours of practice can see the benefits of using ThunderX3 chairs.
A huge range of gaming chairs are also available at Concepts Computer including VertaGear, Noble, DXRacer, ThunderX3 and many other brands. There are even demo units on stand-by for walk-in customers who want to test the chairs before purchasing it.
For more info, you can call 223 3551/2/3 or visit their branch at Kiulap.
Check this out 😀
Picture opportunity with the members of the media
Introducing the cast of The Corny Collins Show
Audience members were dazzled as they were transported into the 60s during the matinee show of “The Corny Collins Show” (based on “Hairspray”). The show took place on Sunday, 9th of December at Dewan Auditorium, Bangunan Tambahan, Jabatan Penerangan, Airport Lama. The production was part of Brunei December Festival, with the support of the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism.
“The Corny Collins Show” was also supported by Jabatan Penerangan, Jabatan Perdana Menteri; D’Music Motion Fitness Studios, CfBT Education Services, Lailatul Shazana’s Production House and Selera Alam.
The production was the ninth production by Seeds Brunei following, Seuss!’ is based on the world of Dr. Seuss, “SEEDS Wicked Witch”, “SEEDS’ Willy Wonka”, “Into The Woods” and “Oliver! The Musical”. Seeds Brunei is recognised as an educational society led by volunteers with the support of the department of schools, Ministry of Education and uses theatre and other creative activities as an educational tool for students in secondary schools and higher institutions.
“The Corny Collins Show” tells the story of Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with big hair and an even bigger heart in the 60’s who is on a mission to follow her dreams. You can’t stop the beat as she sets out to dance her way onto national TV with the nicest kids in town. Tracy’s audition makes her a local star and soon she will be using her new-found fame to fight for equality, bagging local heart-throb Link Larkin along the way!
Over 70 students and graduate youths were involved in the production from stage managing, costume and prop designing as well as in lighting, music and sound. Teachers from various schools, local talents and volunteers were also involved with the production.
The performance was a year-long process by Seeds Brunei in a series of workshops which emphasises the holistic acquisition of all dramatic skills, from cast to stage direction and costuming. In March 2018, Seeds held #Seeds9Refresh hosted by Sekolah Menengah Katok registration. Various workshops at Sekolah Menengah Menglait Gadong in April and cast auditions at iCentre in May.
Seeds9 Mini-Showcase at Dewan Setia Pahlawan MPRT (Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism was held in July 2018. This event was a preview and work-in-progress for what’s to come later this year. The final workshop in September 2018, Theatre Bootcamp, was held over the course of two days at Pusat Tingkatan Enam Sengkurong.
The final two shows will be held on the Monday, 10th December at 7pm and Tuesday, 11th December at 7pm. Tickets are $15 each. You can also check out their Facebook Page for updates
Some of the cast of The Corny Collins Show
At the Auditorium Hall at Info Department
Guests strolling in for the show yesterday
For those who’s not sure where the Info Department is