Beauty and the Beast

Let’s just say I am a sucker for most Disney movies and when the news of a live-action Beauty and the Beast came out, I was excited. I was even more happy when the soundtrack was released on You Tube ealier than the screening of the film.

I just watched the film (again) while I was contemplating on my life here in Melbourne and these are some of my favourite and least favourite things in the movie.

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“Saving Sally” Needs Saving

Saving Sally
Sorry for the folded poster. It was like this in cinemas because the theater is shared with another MMFF entry.

Who is Sally and why does she needed saving? Is this a movie about a damsel in distress waiting for her prince charming to rescue her? Is this a movie about a weak woman who can’t survive real life without a man?

This is my response when a friend told me to watch Saving Sally. All I know is that this is an animated film that took years to finish. So yesterday, I decided to watch Saving Sally only because that is the only MMFF movie screened at NCCC Mall that I have not watched yet.

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Ang Babae sa Septic Tank Part 2: Forever’s Not Enough


One of the first MMFF 2016 entries I watched was Ang Babae sa Septic Tank Part 2: Forever’s Not Enough for two basic reasons – the first one was a personal favorite so watching part two is a requirement and there were a few people getting in line for this movie which is sad.

The Short Film

This year’s full length films also feature entries for the short film category. Each short film is paired with a full length film that somehow carries the same theme. Septic Tank was paired with the short film “Manila Scream” by Roque Lee and Blair Camilo inspired by an 1893 painting “The Scream” of Edvard Munch. Personally, it was one of those short films that is trying too hard to be a social commentary “screaming” at social issues including air pollution and poverty and just like the painting, a commentary of the self and its environment. To include this as Septic Tank’s tandem was weird for me. The film did not come across as comedy for me. Borrowing Chris Martinez’s line in his play “Last Order sa Penguin”, this short film is too pa-deep.

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Mga Bitoon sa Siyudad (Stars in the City)

Mga Bitoon sa Siyudad

This year’s Metro Manila Film Festival is controversial due to the fact that known production houses and household celebrity names were not included in the list. This includes movies of Vice Ganda, Vic Sotto and Mother Lily. This festival has been accused and found GUILTY of only helping out big production houses and feeding Filipino audiences with canned and formula-based storylines. This year, true to the slogan of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, change has come to the MMFF not only in full length films but in the short film category as well. Out of more than 50 entries nationwide, 8 were chosen to be included in this year’s festival. All 8 short films are 5 minutes long and is shown with a full length movie. Sitsiritsit was shown with Seklusyon, Manila Screen was shown with Ang Babae sa Septic Tank Part 2, and Mitatang was shown with Die Beautiful. I was lucky to be invited to a special screening of Mga Bitoon sa Siyudad  (Stars in the City) of direk Jarell Serencio, a graduate of Holy Cross of Davao College and has served as researcher for ABS-CBN’s Maalaala Mo Kaya. For direk Jarell, this is his second short film in a festival. His first was Victor which garnered the Best Film award at the Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival in 2012 of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. This year, direk Jarell is hoping to tell the story of the Roxas Night Market bombing in his hometown Davao City. Continue reading “Mga Bitoon sa Siyudad (Stars in the City)”

My Last Harry Potter


I watched the last part of Harry Potter today and I am somehow confused. I really can’t decide if I liked the movie or not. I have three points.

(1) The best scene in the book (for me) was not emphasized. The death of one of the twins and the redemption when their mother finally defeated Bellatrix was not that intense. One reason was, it was not shown in the movie how Bellatrix killed one of the twins. It was kind of useless to put emphasis on the line “Not my daughter you bitch!” because there was no conflict between them.

(2) I was expecting more duels! Come on! The book was full of those fighting scenes.

(3) I super hate the “19 years later” scene because it felt like they were just there playing dress-up!

But then again, I liked it because:

(1) It had that certain emotional impact on the viewer – not the story, of course, but the fact that it was the last Harry Potter movie.

(2) It had wonderful SFX.

(3) I finally saw the other side of Minerva.

I just wished they ended the movie with Harry, Ron, and Hermione holding hands after Harry destroyed the Elder Wand. It felt like the three main characters were saying goodbye to their fans.

But then again, “19 years later” came…

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Sam Raimi’s Drag me to Hell

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“Drag me to Hell.” Judging the movie by its poster, it looked too cheesy; and most of the time horror films from Hollywood are not scary at all. But this one offers a different flavor. According to critics, this is the classic horror film we all love. And I can’t deny the fact that I agree with them even if Hollywood horror films, specially remakes, are not that scary at all.

Johnnypanic and I watched this movie before he left for New York last August and after we watched the movie I realized that even if the film was scary, it’s not something that haunts you in bed days after. The reason may be because of some scenes that has a looney tunes-ish quality/effect in it. An example of this looney tunes-ish scene was when Mrs. Ganush’s hanky chased Miss Brown. But even if it has some funny scenes and Miss Brown is a super human, it sure was a good excuse to scream inside a movie house. And it sure was a good way to de-stress yourself.

As Sam Raimi said in an interview, he wants “to entertain, thrill and scare the bejeezus out of the audience, if I can, and make them jump and shout, and if I can, make them have a good laugh too.”(

And he was right.