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Monday, July 20, 2009

Movie Digest # 061

Greenbelt 3, Cinema 1, June 24, 8:10pm

Just check out my other blog Ang Pinakamalaking Pagkakamali ng “Transformers 2””.

Friends who might appreciate it: Pinili, Con.

Glorietta 4, Cinema 6, July 1, 8:05pm

This film maybe too eventful as compared to other Rico Maria Ilarde charmer films namely “Sa Ilalim ng Cogon” and “Altar”, but it has originality somewhere. I mentioned “originality” because I can’t think of any other Pinoy film of the same genre having similar approach/vision. “Villa Estrella”, also about an old house, introduces a Pinoy take on body snatching as segued by some strange incidents, usual scare tactics and that haunting chilly atmosphere. As for the acting department, I like Maja Salvador here though I can say in general that the female characters shine more on this film. Forget about the alien-like green fluid-spitting creature from the pool and just enjoy the movie with friends over a bucket of popcorn.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who love swimming pools.

Robinsons Place - Manila, Cinema 5, July 5, 1:00pm

Directed by Gil Portes and written by Eric Ramos (of “Azucena” fame and FHM Philippines’ first editor-in-chief), the film explores (and exploits) the plight of a small time actor who dreams of becoming popular like his idol FPJ. Instead of making it big, he stumbled upon a bag of cold cash that was stolen from a bank. What follows is a series of cat-and-mouse pursuit between the lead character and a group of crooks. Paving the way to sexy stardom through this film is Paloma, FHM April 2009’s cover girl. Beyond the “sex sells” packaging (there’s nothing much really) of the film lies a serviceable filmmaking and a bit dragging storytelling.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who, at some point in their childhood, played “pitik-bulag”.

SM Megamall, Cinema 11, July 9, 9:30pm

This is the sixth and last film in the ambitious Sine Direk series. Directed by Mel Chionglo, from a script by Ricky Lee, the film tells a multi-character story on graft and corruption, freedom of expression and on living dangerously. Emilio Garcia is a corrupt mayor. Richard Gomez is his hitman/bodyguard along with Ryan Eigenman. Snooky Serna is Jinggoy’s wife while Iza Calzado is Richard’s. Aldred Gatchalian and Glaiza de Castro play an activitist couple. The theme may be Joel Lamangan’s forte but Mel Chionglo handled the material very well. No melodrama or awkward execution, the film avoids being preachy and treads the road less travelled: unpleasant, brutal, vigilant and bloody.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who believe that a life costs more than P20.

Gateway Cineplex 10, Cinema 1, July 12, 4:30pm

Usual formula animated film from Hollywood: predictable, occasionally witty, cuddly characters and more often than not peppered with celebrated voice talents. Aside from the character named Manny, a mammoth, there’s nothing much to crave about this film. Even the 3D feature is not tempting enough.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who saw “The Land Before Time”.

SM Mall of Asia, IMAX Theater, July 16, 7:45pm

I can say that it’s the most boring Harry Potter film I’ve seen. And the best! For two hours and a half, I forgot that the film is supposed to be a popcorn film. This is the point in the installment where filmmaker David Yates declares his independence from the expectation that a Harry Potter film should be candycoated with CGI and that it should be a roller coaster ride at the very least. A reckless abandon it may seem but the director might be saying, “F*ck the box office! People will watch the film, anyway.” I immensely enjoyed the consistent maturity of the style, its focus on storytelling, its awesome mythical/magical feel (thanks to the cinematographer of “Amelie”, another great film) and the readiness of the leads’ acting chops.

Friends who might appreciate it: those who can answer the question "Why do we adapt books to films?".

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