El Presidente Plot/Synopsis

Written By Nikki Mendz on Sunday, December 23, 2012 | 9:28 AM

It has been established that the movie, El Presidente is a bioepic film of General Emilio Aguinaldo. It aims to present a comprehensive narration of his life, achievements and even some controversial issues about him, such as his relationship or conflict with another Filipino hero, Andres Bonifacio. To give you a broader view of the totality of the movie, here's the plot/synopsis according to smcinema.com:

The Philippines, 1896. After witnessing atrocities by the Spanish military government and its friars to his constituents, the young town mayor of Cavite el Viejo, Emilio Aguinaldo, feels powerless when he could not help his fellow Filipinos. He joins a secret society called the Katipunan, whose main goal is to start a revolution, topple the colonizers and eventually proclaim independence against Spain. He is inducted by no less than the founder of Katipunan, Andres Bonifacio. Being a government official, Aguinaldo was able to organize a small secret army, albeit, ragtag with a handful of firearms.

Realizing that Bonifacio failed to start the revolution after a series of military bungles, he decides to start the revolution on his own town, eventually inspiring the other towns and cities to join his cause. He ends up victorious, successfully building a formidable army from scratch. The opposite, however, happened to Bonifacio. Though illustrious and charismatic, Bonifacio was reckless and disorganized, losing the trust of his own generals. A rivalry between Bonifacio and Aguinaldo begins to brew.

After a general election chose Aguinaldo over Bonifacio as president, Bonifacio nullifies the results and forms, instead, his own government. A court martial sentences Bonifacio to death, which Aguinaldo tries to commute, after realizing what an oracle predicted to him years ago, saying that Bonifacio’s death will mean the downfall of the republic.

Soon after the order of commutation was received too late and Bonifacio eventually executed, the Spanish army captures the towns under Aguinaldo’s command. Aguinaldo evacuates and transfers his capital to a small village next to the mountains called Biak-na-Bato.

Aguinaldo negotiates an armistice with Spain with the latter paying the insurgent leaders a huge amount if they lay down their arms and be exiled in Hong Kong and a general amnesty is given to the Filipino soldiers.

While in Hong Kong, the American naval fleet allies with the Filipinos to fight against Spain stating that they have no interest in the Philippines and that their goal is to weaken the Spanish military who is also fighting a war with them in Cuba. Aguinaldo agrees and travels back to the Philippines.

Aguinaldo becomes victorious in the Philippines and declares independence from Spain.
El Presidente is an official entry to the 38th Metro Manila Film Festival. It stars ER Ejercito/Jorge Estregan Jr., Nora Aunor, Christopher de Leon, Cesar Montano, Cristine Reyes and a powerhouse cast of veteran actors/actresses.


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