Insiang is young and beautiful. She lives in a Manila slum with a mother who treats her brutally and the mother’s lover, Dado, who lusts after her. Insiang wants to leave and is relying on her boyfriend Bebot to help her. But everyone is scared of Dado, especially the cowardly Bebot… The first Filipino film screened at Cannes, Insiang shows the country’s harsh reality: the raw images, the dramatic concision of the screenplay and an exceptional cast render the claustrophobia of this oppressive environment palpable. If men lay down their humanity, it is because their struggle to survive drives them to it, and Brocka’s acerbic melodrama takes on a more political ambition.