SILLY RED SHOES (James Mayo, 2019)

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Huy bakit ang lakas magpakilig ng KyCine? Sobrang cute nila together at plus point pa na marunong sila pareho umarte. Nadagdagan na naman ang mga paborito kong love teams. Given the right break, sure ako todo sikat ang dalawang batang ‘to.

Nagustuhan ko yung pagkahabi ng fantasy element dun sa main daddy issues storyline. Feeling ko nga with a few tweaks ay maganda siya na full-length feature. (Or siguro it was easier for me to overlook the flaws din kasi free sa iWant?) Still, na-enjoy ko talaga siya.

Ang galing pa ng supporting cast with Herbert Bautista (potential comeback soon?), the always dependable Anna Luna, and the biggest surprise here Karen Reyes (ghorl mahusay ka pala sa iyakan?).

Ganda nung confrontation scene with all five characters in the frame. At yung signature (?) lakad-lakad sequence ng director na nagpaalala sa ‘kin nung impressive breaking the fourth wall scene sa Kuya Wes.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

ASUANG (Raynier Brizuela, 2018) – ★★☆☆☆

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Mas marami siyang nasabi tungkol sa social media generation kesa sa I’m Ellenya L. Although may ilang mga silly/funny moments, hindi nag-work for me yung fusion ng mockumentary style sa local mythology.

Very admirable ng commitment ni Alwyn Uytingco sa lead. Sana masundan pa ito ng ibang juicy roles for him. And syempre, magaling si Chai Fonacier in everything she does. I’m surprised wala pa siyang shrine sa bahay ko.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

ALIMUOM (Keith Sicat, 2018)

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Everything screamed budget Spielberg from the iPad Minis that doubled as high-tech gadgets down to the futuristic rooms filled with wires and covered in foil. Even worse, this agri-sci-fi lacked an interesting story.

I shouldn’t have laughed so loud all throughout, but there were only nine other people in the theater and they probably didn’t mind. How else to react in those battle scenes that resembled a cheesy Bong Revilla MMFF fantasy film?

Black Mirror’s USS Callister was shooketh to the core.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

(Originally published September 13, 2018.)

KAUYAGAN (WAY OF LIFE) (Julienne Ilagan, 2018)

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In one clunky scene that felt like Yellow is the New Black: The Musical, the inmates of CDO City Jail performed an impromptu song number using kitchen items as instruments (empty water bottle, biscuit can, silver tray, etc.) Not one sound ever matched with what was being played.

At least I liked the regional flavor of the songs. Sana soundtrack na lang siya.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

(Originally published September 13, 2018.)

MGA ANAK NG KAMOTE (Carlo Catu, 2018)

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SPOILER ALERT!!

The first twenty minutes that resembled a well-crafted ST mystery really made me believe that I would end up loving this film. But then it turned into a futuristic political satire where sweet potatoes were banned like marijuana and it completely lost me.

I appreciated the restrained performance of Katrina Halili here (and she looked very much a screen goddess, like a young Alma Moreno). I really wish this went all out as a Diligin Mo ng Arnibal ang Uhaw Kong Kamote.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

(Originally published September 13, 2018.)

WILD AND FREE (Connie Macatuno, 2018)

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SPOILER ALERT!!

My notes on Wild and Free:

1. Umpisa pa lang hindi ko na mapigilan ang lakas ng tawa ko. Ang eksena kasi nasa loob ng sasakyan ang ex-lovers na sina Jake (Derrick Monasterio, whose performance was as stiff as an erection) at Ellie (Sanya Lopez) tapos more reminiscing sila about their past.

Kaso napaka-obvious na may nagtutulak sa gilid ng kotse para kunwari tumatakbo siya. Yung mapapaisip ka bakit sa exterior overhead shots eh ang smooth ng road na dinadaanan nila pero sa interior shots eh para silang nalulubak every two seconds.

2. Anyway, mukhang bagay naman ang ugali ng characters nila. Si ate gurl yung tipong napakaingay kapag ngumunguya. Yung parang pang-porn or mga nakakairitang ASMR vids sa lakas.

Tapos si koya (aka “Mr. Laway”) naman nakabukas ang bibig mag-chew ng White Rabbit. Feeling sexy ang kumag na kahit nalaglag na ang candy galing sa bibig niya, sinubo niya ulit kasi wala pa naman daw ten seconds. Gusto ko sila regaluhan ng GMRC for Christmas.

3. So apparently si Ellie ay ex-girlfriend din ng older brother ni Jake. Nung big reveal scene, nalaman nung nanay (Cheska Diaz, stuck in 90’s overacting mode) na natuhog ni ate gurl ang panganay (who’s dead btw) at bunso niya pero deadma lang kasi mas importante ang 80th birthday ng lola nila. Saang planeta nagaganap ang alternate reality na ito?

4. Sample words of wisdom ni Ellie: “Eh ano naman kung rebound? Diba nga sa basketball yun ang dapat na hindi pinapakawalan?“.

Ganyan ang reasoning niya kasi mas masarap naman daw si Jake kesa sa kuya nito (did I mention that he’s already dead??).

Huy gurl, technical foul ka!!

5. And the much-hyped erotic scenes? Ano ba eh nag-pump nga until climax si Jake na hindi man lang naghuhubad ng pantalon niya. Tapos dun sa isang sex scene naisipan ni Ellie na mag-multitask so ni-on niya ang washing machine habang sinisibasib siya sa ibabaw nito para nga naman tapos na ang labada niya after nila makaraos. Oh diba, ibang level ng hitting two birds (wink, wink) yan.

(Side note: Maraming salamat Netflix at ang laki ng natitipid ko sa’yo, although sobrang lugi pa rin ng feeling ko.)

6. Halos lahat problematic sa pelikulang ito (kung saan macho at admirable ang chauvinism ng mga lalaki habang boba at subservient ang role ng mga babae).

I haven’t even touched on the couple’s very toxic relationship. Hindi naman sila mukhang in love talaga. Sex lang ang reason ng connection nila. Tapos puro irrational hallucinations si Jake kahit di naman siya sabog. Mabilis din na-resolve ang conflicts nila at nakalimutan na may sexual assault na naganap para lang sa requisite happy ending. How romantic!!

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

SARAH GERONIMO: THIS 15 ME (Paul Alexei Basinillo, 2018)

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Popstar Royalty Queen Sarah Geronimo is Popstar Royalty Queen Sarah Geronimo.

Sayang lang kasi hindi fully na-capture ng special ang collective energy ng sold-out crowd sa Araneta (considering na highest grossing local concert siya of all time).

May time pa na mas malakas ang sigawan for James Reid. Wait, ano na pala nangyari sa prods with Daniel Padilla and Xian Lim?

Impressive ng dancing niya sa Tala number kahit mas marami pa kanta ng mga back-up singers nya. Tapos sunod-sunod yung foreign covers eh ang daming magagandang OPM songs from her last four iconic albums.

15th anniversary and di isinama ang career-defining na To Love You More? Uhm.

Nagustuhan ko yung mga behind the scenes na lumabas ang genuine personality niya. Mas open na siya at spontaneous. Ang laking difference from her Expressions days. We needed more of that here.

The best part pa rin yung Leaving on a Jet Plane na nakasuot lang siya ng plain white tee and ripped jeans. Parang nagpapaalam na siya sa glamourous showbiz life kasi lalagay na siya sa tahimik (pero parang lang pala). Sigurado ako bumaha ng Popster tears sa Araneta that night.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

THE DAY AFTER VALENTINE’S (Jason Paul Laxamana, 2018)

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SPOILER ALERT!!

I can come up with ten things that I didn’t like about this movie, but I’m sure you’ll still watch this Hawaii travelogue narrated by damaged souls because of Bela Padilla and JC Santos (both much better in 100 Tula Para Kay Stella).

If I learned anything from Bela’s bangs, it was that I did the right thing in not trusting those DIY haircut tutorials on YouTube.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

(Originally published August 16, 2018.)