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Saturday, May 30, 2009

Movie Digest # 059

Robinsons Place Manila, Cinema 7, May 23, 4:00pm

This is the third installment from Sine Direk and, this time, the spotlight’s on Lore Reyes. It tells a story of a chef OFW (beautifully played by Paolo Contis) who comes home to attend a tribute for his farmer father. Audience is then introduced with a series of characters in the bucolic barrio and with them also comes their own little stories. In one drinking session, Paolo Contis’ character makes a bet with his uncle (Michael de Mesa). If Paolo can cook a tasty lechon, Michael will give his marriage (with Joanne Quintas) a second chance. The finale scene, though very predictable, appears to be well executed. On the minus side, I would prefer it more if the script introduces how the barrio folks are having a big deal with lechon or with cooking in general. This would perhaps enchance the excitement on the betting part. Also, I find casting Maricel Laxa and Karylle not to be a very good idea. Maricel’s character requires more of an Irma Adlawan and Karylle to be too cosmopolitan for a barrio lass role. If there’s something memorable with the film, it must be the delectable cinematography everytime a food is included in the frame.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who can make a connection between swine flu and Dr. Hayden Kho.

SM Megamall, Cinema 5, May 23, 7:25pm

First, I am glad that Julia Roberts, at her prime, is doing films like “Duplicity”, mature, intelligent and sleek. The film is close to a feel-good romantic movie without being a sell-out. It’s talky, engaging and just plain fun, similar to an experience after watching any of Steven Soderbergh’s Ocean series. The film chronicles an unusual love story of two “thinking” individuals who work as a secret agent to two opposing major companies. It’s an outwit-and-outplay kind of film investing on a theme of love being a heart-over-matter thing. Clive Owen and Julia Roberts are both perfect for the role. It’s a bonus to see Tom Wilkinson and Paul Giamatti as the warring corporate heads. For me, it’s a must-watch.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who think that this is not a Michael Keaton movie (where the hell he is now, by the way?).

Robinsons Galleria, Cinema 10, May 27, 8:00pm

Fourth on Sine Direk, the film takes us to a Pinoy AB crowd version of “Romeo and Juliet”. Agaton and Mindy meet in a dance workshop and from there, an innocent love blooms amidst the ordeal that is faced with social classes, acceptance, absence of parental affection and depression. There may be some dance sequences here and there but it’s definitely no “Highschool Musical”. New actor Chase Vega arises from a raw acting peppered with superb nuances. He was at his best when he is not speaking any line. Louise delos Reyes’ Mindy, on the other hand, might be too complex for the actress but she has her moments. The last sequence wherein our male lead has to woo her ladylove back is definitely one of the unforgettable endings I have seen in local cinema.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who believe that Peque Gallaga can do GP to PG films.

Glorietta 4, Cinema 3, May 28, 7:50pm

I can’t decide if I like the film as a whole or not. The video game leveling kind of storytelling is not appealing but the action sequences are comparable to James Cameron’s vision and scope. The concept’s Biblical reference is food for the brain but the so-so acting from the leads hamper the total pull-off. It’s good to see Bryce Dallas Howard and Helena Bonham Carter in one film though (what’s with the three-piece screen names?). Or was it just me who was not scared of the terminators in this fourth installment? I remember it fondly that for the first two films, I was rooting for the Connors to survive even if the robots seem unstoppable. Maybe, I’ve seen enough CGI-decorated films. Or maybe, I’m just getting old.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who think that Star Cinema’s “T2” is not a sequel to James Cameron’s “Terminator”.

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