:: Cinemalaya2012 Day 3 ::

Last Tuesday was sort of (yes, sort of) a blast for me; I’ll explain it further, just read my shit below.

Without further adieu (to you and you and you).

DAY 3.


One of the nicest things about our Indie cinema is we can travel to places that we can’t / won’t visit / reach / access. Places such as the slums, islands unreachable by our will, and well, the interior of our government offices. Yes, you heard it right. Say it with me: government – offices.

I’ve seen the interior of your oh so usual government office such as SSS, DFA, and LTO but I’ve never seen the inside of a police station. Just the façade, I guess. Simply put, I’ve never trusted our local police especially with what happened in our house years ago; and I’m not willing to re-tell the story, maybe some other time. Ergo, there is a tingle in my mind that somehow, I would like to see the interior of any police station in the metro.

I know. It’s fucking mababaw. Kebs.

Now, in this movie, we are introduced with the detailed process on the ins and outs on how a crime is perceived and experienced thru the eyes of three types of people: the victim, the officer, and the crook. Let’s just call this film a virtual tour, if I may, of your usual Manila police station.

The initial scenes were definitely engaging. It definitely feels like what you usually see on Hollywood films, where the police try to catch the crook, while running thru the different floors and places inside a building and the different eskinitas too. It was pure adrenaline rush reminiscent of the director’s 2011 cinemalaya entry, Amok.

And that’s it. Act 2 tells us the process of how policemen handle a crime. I’m not saying that these scenes are ho-hum boring. In fact, they are still interesting as most of it were probably taken from real life situations such as police brutality, illegal procedures, and being a charmer at pretty complainants. It was amusing throughout and for sure you’d miss the riveting sequence that Fajardo could have offered. Nonetheless, we also witness the fucking red tape that our government offices offer to the unsuspecting civilian.

I actually have a debate inside my head if John Lapus’ scenes were really important in the film; yay won by the way. Also, the feel was quite different inside the police station. It seems that everything was lax and okay; I think it ruined the authenticity of the place since even the prisoners should actually be scarier than usual. Other than that, it is still a great watch and the climax was just perfect for the film.


I won’t try to be a film scholar or a fucking movie intellectual for this film. Simply because I am probably one of those people who didn’t get the supposed feel of the film BUT understood the highlights and the greatness of the movie. I’ve actually experienced this, many times already, especially when watching those old films that are really hard to understand even though that the greatness had unfolded in front of you. And so, I will try my best to further “review” and “pa-critique” this controversial film.

Controversial in a sense that the plot point of this film would make the conservative squirm. Lucky for us, we’re used to this type of storyline already. The setting itself is controversial too; there was a question in the film, by one of the characters, on why they aren’t helping the “fight” against Marcos (it was Martial Law during that time). Everything was set in the seventies and these nuns were living in a cloister, simply telling us that they are supposedly secluded from the outside world (history obviously changed its course, circa People Power). Despite Martial Law, everything went fine inside the cloister until one of them experienced something lawless that changed everything in the story.

Before anything else, this is definitely a superb casting for the film. All four of the main actresses in this movie gave exemplary performances. I just like the part where everyone else had their own personal highlights per scene without trying to outdo the other. Also, the shots were marvelous too; I really like the cinematography especially those shots where the camera was moving in an elliptical motion reminiscent of the outline of a fishbowl shot (this is a lomo reference by the way). And yes, don’t forget the music too.

Now, here’s the part where I would say that was that really it? I mean I know this is a really slow film, and that’s a given. I would also want to say that the story is simple in a sense that if they could’ve told it straight up, everything could’ve made sense (because I know I am not making sense, heh).

<AWESOME SPOILER STARTS HERE> Maybe because I have a lingering question on what happened to Mylene Dizon’s character if the old w0men actually saw what happened? I think someone should fill the void in that area. Or did I miss it? It doesn’t make any sense. <AWESOME SPOILER ENDS FUCK YEAH>

I also have to highlight the confrontation scene between Mylene Dizon and Jodi Sta. Maria. Their actions are definitely not fit for their suit and supposed personality. It was probably a breather to see more “action scenes” in the film. I’m not saying I got bored with the rest of the film, I actually enjoyed those memorable shots and the intriguing storyline.

Fo sho, we can sell this film abroad. And our ADHD movie goers in Manila wouldn’t get it, just like me. But no, watch this film. And please tell me if you’ve appreciated it. I did, it’s just that I didn’t understand it much.

So sue me.

(not a fan of slow drama. yeah.)


~ by targrod on July 26, 2012.

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