Friday, July 17, 2015

Saturday Night Fever (Atlantis Productions)

https://www.facebook.com/ATEGasia
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Working at a paint shop, Tony Manero (Brandon Rubendall) does not seem to have a clear goal as to what he wants to achieve in life, but he does know one thing: He loves to dance. This is why he and buddies Double J (Nick Varricchio), Joey (Nel Gomez), and Bobby C (Bibo Reyes) always make sure to hit the 2001 Disco every weekend. His moves prove to be popular, attracting girls such as Annette (Mikkie Bradshaw) who repeatedly professes her love for him. But he only has eyes for Stephanie Mangano (Jenna Rubaii), the dancer who works in an office across the river. They get a chance to dance together in hopes of winning $500 in a competition. She makes it perfectly clear that their relationship should remain professional, but he obviously wants to be more than friends. With other everyday hang-ups to deal with, Tony and friends try to stay alive, mainly through dancing as a means of escape from reality.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Ant-Man

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ant-Man_%28film%29
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Fresh out of serving his jail sentence, burglar Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) finds it hard to keep a job despite holding a master’s degree in engineering. Desperate to have enough money for child support so he could be with his daughter, he goes back to his old ways and robs an old manor. Instead of money, though, he finds nothing more than a helmet and a suit in a vault. He tries them on and gets the surprise of his life, discovering that his new costume gives him the ability to shrink himself and go back to his original size at will. What he does not know is that he has been manipulated by Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), who needs his expertise to break into Cross Industries and steal the Yellowjacket, a similar gear his protégé Darren Cross (Corey Stoll) plans to capitalize on through military deals. Pym’s daughter, Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly), wants to don the suit herself, but he just would not let her. Instead, the three form a team to make sure that such delicate technology wouldn’t fall into the wrong hands.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The Breakup Playlist

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Breakup_Playlist
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Gino (Piolo Pascual) and Trixie (Sarah Geronimo) argue in his car en route to a musical gig. She says she’s had enough. She tells him she is quitting their band. He says he’s had enough. He tells her to get out of his life. And so their relationship ends on a sour note, with no signs of reconciliation. It is not until years later, when a popular loveteam taps the duo as their favorite musicians for a reunion concert, that the two get the chance to meet again. He is wishing for a second chance, but she wants nothing to do with him anymore. Animosity proves to be more prevalent than hope, causing unwanted conflicts in their daily rehearsals. With pressure from their producers, the ex-lovers strive to get along for the sake of professionalism. Is one song enough to fix what has long been deemed as broken?

Monday, July 13, 2015

Minions

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minions_%28film%29
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Since their origins as single-celled organisms, the Minions have only had one goal in mind, which is to find an evil master that they could serve. Unfortunately, they seem to bring bad luck everywhere they go, spelling bad news for whoever it is that they are serving at the time. This persistent string of misfortune pushes them to a life of isolation and gloomy existence. Just when all hope seems lost, a leader emerges in the form of Kevin, who recruits Bob and Stuart to join him on a mission to find their new boss. The trio’s journey brings them to New York, and then to Florida to attend a Villain Con where they meet Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock), super villain du jour, who plans to steal the crown of the Queen of England. Everything seems all set, except that clumsiness and circumstance connive to bring about misunderstandings between master and minion, turning them instead into unlikely rivals.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

[TOKYO] Marshmallows and Choco Syringe in Prison


Goodbye fuel surcharge means airline promos are legit again, and this was proven when I booked my Manila – Narita – Manila tickets via Cebu Pacific. I only spent PhP4000 all-in! How can you say no to that? There is a problem, though; I already did the tourist thing in Tokyo back in 2012; what the heck am I going to do there now? I decided against exploring the Tohoku region north of Tokyo because I’m lazy like that, even if it’s just a short train ride away. Oh well, let’s just chillax in Tokyo then!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (Dalanghita Productions)

https://www.facebook.com/DalanghitaProductions
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Mely (Frenchie Dy) is your archetypal big sister who would go to great lengths to ensure that her family is well-supported financially, even if it meant working as a maid for a group of superheroes. Fuwerza Filipinas is not just your typical team of heroes, they are popular as well and have an image to maintain, pretty much like the matinee idols you see on television. Led by Madre de Dios (Shiela Valderrama – Martinez) and her abs, the ensemble consists of: Nena Babushka (Giannina Ocampo), the healer; Windang Woman (Caisa Borromeo), who could command the wind; Bazooka Man (Chuck Lazaro – Hipol), with an iron cannon installed on his left arm; Popoy Pusakal (Chesko Rodriguez), the little brother who has feline-like abilities; and Leading Man (Markki Stroem), whose ring gives him telekinetic capabilities, and who has a rather bad record for being infatuated with the maid. Meanwhile, a rival group of misfits, the Kayumanggilas led by Senyor Blangko (Nar Cabico), recruits Mely’s sister, Viva (Natasha Cabrera), to sabotage Fuwerza Filipinas by having her ingest Chemical Q, which gives her extraordinary powers.

Friday, July 3, 2015

VIRGIN LABFEST XI: Set D

http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/506186/lifestyle/artandculture/sariwa-xi-love-tales-lead-2015-virgin-labfest
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TALO ANG WALANG ALAM – Myrna (Nikki Pastor) goes on labor in a cart parked on the street, while her brother-in-law is chased by a corrupt police official for whom he peddles drugs. The arrival of a working student who asks for help to recover her bag with money for her mother’s dialysis shifts  the dynamics of the game, as the money changes hands until it reaches its new owner. And so it is indeed, the one who knows least emerges as the loser.

This seems to be one of those entries that feels obliged to show you the underbelly of society, the nitty gritty that is sure to make you wince with every scene. Some would be quick to dismiss this as poverty porn, not that different from what you see in most indie films. While we acknowledge the need for entries to be socially relevant, perhaps there are other ways of getting the message across without being too cliché. The acting is good alright, but the entire hour felt just like watching the local news, or even a soap opera, to some extent.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

VIRGIN LABFEST XI: Set C

http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/506186/lifestyle/artandculture/sariwa-xi-love-tales-lead-2015-virgin-labfest
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BIRTWAL – Guy (Ron Capinding) and Girl (J-Mee Katanyag) decide to meet up after almost a year of romancing each other online, except that their descriptions of themselves might be a little bit too farfetched from the truth. They both agree to wear blue, but end up both donning green. Would their online romance be sufficient for them to hold onto once they see that they are both far from the virtual image that they have made for themselves?

This one is a bit hard to watch but innovative nonetheless. The two main characters share the stage with four flat screen TVs displaying their conversations online, which is probably the best way to do it. In a way, it makes the audience feel as though they are part of the action themselves. It must have been challenging for the two actors to pretend texting all the time like that in front of the audience. What you'll find really striking here is not the play itself, but rather the critique of society that it offers you. How do you know which is reality and which is fantasy nowadays, in a society governed by the dynamics of social media, could you still distinguish between what’s real and what’s made-up?

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