MUST BE… LOVE (Dado Lumibao, 2013)

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The great chemistry of its charming leads was wasted in this worn-out love story of best friends.

Even teaches young girls that it’s the appreciation of oneself that makes you beautiful. And that using Olay for whiter skin helps, too.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

(Originally published March 15, 2013.)

CALL CENTER GIRL (Don Cuaresma, 2013)

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Got everything wrong about the BPO industry that I wonder why they even bothered setting it in a call center.

Even worse, there was nothing remotely realistic in the movie. Not the caricatures or the contrived and senseless situations.

The only times I laughed were probably unintentional: the one-on-one product training, the agent taking a call with a locked PC, the Team Leader inviting his agent for a few beers before reporting to work, all agents off the phones for New Year, etc.

Note: The movie was shot in Alorica so my former boss was part of the end credits. At least seeing his name onscreen made me feel giddy.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

ON THE JOB (Erik Matti, 2013)

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A near flawless movie marred only by the weak performance of Gerald Anderson. He was a pussy in a group of roaring lions.

This was a smart and stylish thriller (it reminded me so much of The Departed) that left me depressed with the current state of local politics.

Aside from the skillful direction of Erik Matti, its cinematography and score made the film a cut above the usual Pinoy film noir.

Joel Torre gave a magnificent, towering performance. I admired all the restraint in his acting. Joey Marquez and Leo Martinez were also great.

Really sad to see Gerald in the central role, though. His stilted and phony delivery almost ruined the movie for me. Coco Martin wasn’t available?

Rating: ★★★★★

(Originally published September 8, 2013.)

ANG HULING HENYA (Marlon Rivera, 2013)

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Bland, boring, and unfunny. Rufa Mae Quinto deserved so much better. Who wanted to see her oh so serious?

I couldn’t believe that Ang Huling Henya was from the same guy that gave us Ang Babae sa Septic Tank. They were on opposite ends of the comedy spectrum.

Quinto’s one of our finest comediennes but she just wasn’t in her element here. Booba’s not funny when she’s smart.

Aside from a clever bit involving Shaira Luna, Jessica Zafra and “Sen. Miriam”, the movie was almost devoid of laughs.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

(Originally published August 21, 2013.)

RAKETEROS (Randy Santiago, 2013)

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A comedy that felt old and made me feel old. It should have been turned into a sitcom instead.

Raketeros harkened back to the 90’s brand of Pinoy comedy with jokes that were incredibly corny and stale, and had the requisite beach scene.

With all the cameos, it was a test of your Pinoy showbiz knowledge. I was able to name all of them, except for one PBB starlet.

Sam Pinto continued her streak of starring in the worst Pinoy movies ever made. She really needs to reconsider her acting career.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

(Originally published August 12, 2013.)