In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Filipino can still smile. Despite the upheavals and disruptions of almost all aspects of life, the Philippines has been witness to many acts of kindness, especially at the frontlines where the massive support for the frontliners can be seen. While Filipinos are well known all over the world for having warm smiles, they are forced to hide them behind a mask.
To pay tribute to this, the Department of Tourism has released a video entitled “Smile” featuring a rework of the beloved 1990’s Eraserheads song, “With A Smile.”
The video salutes the resilient and brave men and women at the frontlines. It includes medical health workers, store clerks, delivery men, basic services and utility crew members, and the police and military officers who keep us safe.
Directed by Joel Limchoc, the video was pieced together from existing user-created videos. Moreover, it includes photos already posted online in social media and the news media. The said video can compared to DOT’s lauded “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” campaign. The viral content was put together through authentic, 100% crowdsourced content.
Ely Buendia, who composed “With a Smile” for the legendary band, the Eraserheads, generously allowed the use of his composition.
Singer and songwriter Bea Lorenzo provided heartfelt vocals over a sparse, cinematic reworking of the classic anthem. For Lorenzo, part of the video’s subject matter struck close to home. As a matter of fact, both her grandfather and father are medical doctors.
“Smile” is, in fact, a reminder of what remains good in the Filipino. As the familiar tune reaches its uplifting climax, the video reminds every Filipino, “Nothing can take our smile away.”