Thursday, December 31, 2015

My take on About Time ~ Film Review

by Love Esios

photo grabbed from
2015 is closing in a few hours. That means, you are able to complete 365 days of your life and in a few, you are going to complete another set of 365 days as we welcome another year full of hopes and aspirations.

But what if your dad told you a secret that you can travel back in time? Will you immediately jump into the opportunity of going back into one of the days in our previous set of 365 and make it better?

In the movie About Time, Tim Lake (portrayed by Domnhall Gleeson) was told by his father (portrayed by Bill Nighy) a family secret --- men in their family can travel back in time. Tim was skeptical at first, but when he tried to go back to the time when he didn't kiss a girl on New Year's day, he was shocked that he could actually do it. And during that time, he kissed that girl with so much confidence and passion.

After thoroughly going through the process of time-travelling with his dad, Tim resolved himself that he's going to use his new-found skill to get a girlfriend. He tried to use it with his first love Charlotte but he wasn't able to capitalize on it. Not until he met Mary (portrayed by Rachel McAdams) on a blind date that he realized that he is actually in-love. And that is the beginning of the real struggle of a complicated life for a time traveller.

Now here comes the question: What sets this movie apart from other films with time travel plots? This British romance-comedy masterpiece of Richard Curtis was peppered with British punch lines that you will truly leave you with a hearty laugh. It has also made me look back on the unfortunate events in my life brought by wrong decisions and impulsive decision-making. It affirmed my belief that love is so much stronger than any fear, doubt or sadness combined.

We may not have the ability to go back in the past and make it better, but I guess this movie wants us to see the beauty of living your life to the fullest every day. And that every day is also an opportunity to make things right and make it the best day ever.

The year will soon come to an end. Another year is about to unfold. May the year 2016 be "about time" spent with the people you love. Spend your time wisely, seize every moment and allow yourself to be filled with love so that you can share more love in return. Let's always remember that unlike Tim, there's not going back for us again. So enjoy the moment while it lasts. :-)

Before I forget, let me give this movie an 8.

Cheers for 2016! :-)

Top 15 Best Pinoy Films of 2015 That I Have Seen

by: Benj Ramos

15. ARI: MY LIFE WITH A KING - dir. Carlo Enciso Catu

MMFF New Wave Best Picture awardee. Poetic, simple and funny. When a film gives you a discovery, it is a good film. ARI gives us characters that we have never seen before— a group of Kapampangan poets with a King.

14. TAKLUB - dir. Brilliante Mendoza

My favorite Nora film over Thy Womb, Hustisya and Kwento Ni Mabuti. It is almost a sincere post Yolanda tribute.

13. TANDEM - dir. King Palisoc

My favorite MMFF New Wave film. Post On The Job genre. Looks like OTJ really sets the bar high. Props to Nicco Manalo. Nakakainis lahat ng characters!

12. IMBISIBOL- dir. Lawrence Fajardo

Almost sleep inducing but lemme give props on how it was done. Never imagine the outcome after seeing this from Virgin Labfest. Sayang talaga si JM, back to back siya dito sa list (#13-Tandem) and last year, That Thing Called Tadhana.

11. WATER LEMON - dir. Lemuel Lorca

Weird, funny and witty. Pero mostly weird. Jun-Jun Quintana is a breakthrough. 

10. MANANG BIRING - dir. Carl Joseph Papa

Fresh and creative. It was never afraid to step up, and it worked.

9. BAMBANTI - dir. Zig Dulay

This Sinag Maynila film entry is about a struggle of trust from a mother to her son. It all started with a lost golden watch, and the son becomes the suspect. It invites us to be the judgmental audience. Has several good moments and better performances as expected. 

8. DAHLING NICK - dir. Sari Dalena

Nick Joaquin in a nutshell. Reliable and interesting interviewees, bonus na narealize kong may ibang writers na akala ko patay na pero buhay na buhay pa pala. Di lang ako masyado naadvise na 3 hours pala ‘to.

7. KID KULAFU - dir. Paul Soriano 

It wanders through an old Mindanao of boxing, agriculture and kulafu. Excellent perfomances from Buboy Villar as Pacman and De Rossi as the infamous Dionesia. A fairy tale without glass slippers but a boxing gloves instead. So far,it wins the boxing match of films about Pacman.

6. MISS BULALACAO - Ara Chawdhury

Ang wild nito. At ang wild ng Biliran! It delights me when a film showcases the beauty and culture of the Philippines.

5. APOCALYPSE CHILD - Mario Cornejo and Monster Jimenez

The best Q Cinema entry so far from the film fest’s three-year run. Bale ang ganda ng Baler. I can never be friends with the characters coz they’re so out of my league. Rich kid problems.

4. HENERAL LUNA - Jerrold Tarog

Your HEKASI books comes to life, and with dialogues. Punyeta the Spoliarium scene, it was so clever. This has set the standards of period slash history films. I hope Hermano Puli and Goyong also deliver.

3. Honor Thy Father - dir. Erik Matti 

A real second chance for John Lloyd after the disappointing A Second Chance. No more love team for JL, please. Meryll Soriano is the next big thing in indies.

2. AN KUBO SA KAWAYANAN - dir. Alvin Yapan

It takes a good director to teach the insect, stones, ants, slippers and the entire kubo to act. Everything that you see from this film are actors. They are as equally good as Mercedes Cabral.

1. ANINO SA LIKOD NG BUWAN - dir. Jun Lana

Amazingly executed. You think you know it, then you don’t, and then you think again, then you hold back on what you think the ending might be and then you just stop guessing. Take each scene at a time as the story unfolds. Cleverly choreographed.

Monday, December 28, 2015

A Second Chance ~ Film Review

by: Uel Ceballos

I was one of those who got hooked in the “One More Chance” film that starred John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo. Thus, when the release for the sequel was announced I was as much as excited as the rest. 

Ms. Cathy Garcia-Molina has unique way of creating romance drama films, which are both exciting and mature for the adults to connect to. I like most of her films – just right with perfect blend of “kilig”, drama, and moral. She seldom got off; always just right, delivering us a good taste of romance film.

“A Second Chance” is much more of a heavy drama. It centred not in the mushy chick flick scenes, but in the ugly truth of reality; the up and down of marriage. It was a brilliant move to deliver the sequel years after the first one, allowing the characters to grow and evolve in their own perfect time. Should it be done only year after the One More Chance’s success, I doubt if John Lloyd and Bea would deliver it as good as they did now. Likewise, one couldn’t say if the story would be as intact and justified. The years of gap between “One More Chance” and “A Second Chance” allowed Popoy and Basha to grow, to mature, at least inside the mind of the writer if not in the sight of the viewers. Indeed, “striking whilst the iron is hot” isn’t always the rule of the thumb. When they appeared in the first sequence of the film, I knew the characters have changed in time – not John Lloyd and Bea – I’m talking about Popoy and Basha.

One thing I love about “A Second Chance” is its sequence treatment. I personally admired the way it broke the linear delivery, with mixes of flashbacks and real time narrative. What I’m just bothered about is its being too melodramatic. Popoy and Basha were crying for almost 80% of the whole film. I have no problem with heavy scenes, but the approach, it seemed to me were always delivered in a similar level and manner. The two leads are great drama artists, but somehow it made me think that they overdid the crying scenes. I was fed up with all the crying, sequence after sequence. It became too strained for me. No questions asked that they cry good in front of the camera, but anything you do in too much repetition loses its intended effect to the viewers. Apart from these, I love all the rest. In fact, “A Second Chance” can be levelled alongside international romance drama films. It is written and directed with clarity and mastery. The brains behind it definitely know where they wanted to go to. The ending however, was a cliché for me. But nonetheless, this romance drama film is something different from what we’re used to.