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Battle of the First Presidents: Aguinaldo Vs Bonifacio

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The leader of the government and entitled as the highest political position of a country is what we known as president. In the Philippines we currently have a total of 15 presidents directly elected by the people throughout the history. The first President of the Philippines that schools accept even today is the man on the 20 peso bill, Emilio Aguinaldo. But looking back in the history some people do not approve of this and instead recognize the man revered as “Supremo ng Katipunan” or “Father of Philippine Revolution”, Andres Bonifacio as the First President of the Philippines. Two films were made differently and tackle both lives of Aguinaldo and Bonifacio. These movies are “El Presidente” and “Bonifacio: Ang Unang Pangulo”. There are distinct differences about the significance of both films. El Presidente was made to honour and depicts the life and time of Emilio Aguinaldo while Bonifacio: Ang Unang Pangulo was made to show how Andres Bonifacio started a revolution to Spaniards and the real reason of his death. Both historical films displayed biases in terms of conveying the historical events happened and this depends on how the directors want the viewers to think and learn about the film.

“History is a tricky path to thread for filmmakers. Either they bombard the viewers with historical facts or choose a point of view that is neither appealing nor sensible to history buffs and plain movie goers. ” Ang Unang Pangulo From the museum and into the past, Watching both films you can clearly tell that they have different opinions making the other one the hero and making the other one a traitor. El President immorally portrayed historical figures that are too force to depict Emilio Aguinaldo not only a hero but also making Andres Bonifacio looks like an unadorned loser. The film look inaccurate with unnecessary scenes such as the woman supposedly predicted the future of Aguinaldo in terms of the three women he will be in love with.

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“El Presidente is just indisputably dull. It is unable to muster enough movement or excitement to be a compelling war film. ” [2: Oggs Cruz, Review: Mark Meily’s EL PRESIDENTE Is A Historical Annoyance, https: //screenanarchy. com/2013/01/review-mark-meilys-el-presidente-is-a-historical-annoyance. html (Accessed: October 04, 2018)] Bonifacio: Ang Unang Pangulo on the other hand is the perfect balance of history and action. Although it is not the perfect film, it conveys real historical events with supported facts and justice. It conveys Andres Bonifacio’s road in starting a revolution to Spaniard after 300 years of colonizing our country well consistently bringing a terrific experience in cinema. The scene of the real reason of Bonifacio’s death got me convinced that maybe we should recognize the Supremo as the actual First President of our country after Aguinaldo committed one of the infamous crimes in Philippine history after ordering to execute Andres Bonifacio. Andres Bonifacio established the First Philippine Government, KKK, the armed revolution against Spain making Bonifacio the sole leader of this revolution. However, Aguinaldo wanted to form and establish a new revolutionary government. An Election was implemented in Tejeros Convention to identify who is the rightful of this government to resolve the conflict between two groups. Aguinaldo declared as the President and Bonifacio was voted as the Director of Interior. With Andres not able to finish his education, this creates doubts and people questioning his ability to lead. Insulted, Bonifacio dismissed the election and did not respect the results of the convention. Knowing many people will side to Bonifacio he was killed under the orders of Emilio Aguinaldo as well as his brother Procopio for getting accused as a traitor.

“Bonifacio and brother Procopio were charged with sedition, treason and conspiracy to assassinate Aguinaldo. ” [3: Constantino C. Tejero, Review: A Question of Heroes: Aguinaldo vs Bonifacio, https: //opinion. inquirer. net/88098/a-question-of-heroes-aguinaldo-vs-bonifacio (Accessed: October 04, 2018)] Emilio Aguinaldo being the First President of the Philippines remains. Many books stated it, schools taught it and Filipinos recognizing him is a sign of being ignorant in our own history. This does not lessen the fact that Andres Bonifacio is one of the greatest heroes Philippine history had. Many Filipinos also show him gratitude for his bravery and courage to achieve the freedom of our country. November 30 became a national holiday in honour of the birth of Andres Bonifacio. Also this doesn’t reflect on Emilio Aguinaldo not having contributions in our Philippine History as he also benefited in achieving our freedom. But we can’t hide the fact that Andres Bonifacio is the rightful president in that time and could’ve been the First President of our country. We as Filipinos should consider this knowledge because the more we know about the past, the better prepared we are for the future.

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