Thursday, May 20, 2004

.:A Plug:.

Do continue voting for me. I’m nominated for BEST WEBLOG IN THE PHILIPPINES. Do vote for me by clicking HERE by clicking the link and registering with the forum. I need only a few more votes to regain the lead. :)

.:A Primer:.

Grace and I watched “I Will Survive” yesterday. It was an interesting film, and I really liked the concept. Grace even cried at a certain point in the film, which was perfectly understandable because of the very natural flow of the script. This was much better than the last local film I watched (Ruffa Mae Quinto’s “Masikip Sa Dibdib”.), and it was all good fun. Shades of “Bridal Shower”, even.


.:Movie Review: I Will Survive:.

I Will Survive
This Movie Did More Than Just Survive. It Thrived!

“I Will Survive” is the story of four friends in a chorale group: Louise (Dina Bonnevie), Mylene (Judy Ann Santos), Cynthia (Maricel Soriano), and Mandy (Eric Quizon). The former three are all married with at least one child. The latter is a single parent of two sons. The story revolves around how they deal with their relationships with their respective partners and their children.

Louise is a fashion goddess who is renowned for being beautiful and attractive even in her age. Her husband, Manolo (Tonton Gutierrez.), is a photographer who is so into taking her pictures. However, her daughter, Peachy (Serena Dalrymple), is into a gothic look, which completely contrasts with Louise’s fashion sense. They inevitably clash over their differing tastes, and the need is for them to bridge this gap between the two of them. What Louise doesn’t know is the “stalker” who steals her pictures from her husband’s studio is actually Peachy, who secretly worships her mom.

Cynthia is portrayed as a sort of frigid insurance agent whose husband, Greg (Jay Manalo), is perceived to be a notorious womanizer. She tries to seduce him by pretending to be a GRO, trying to make him jealous, and even donning a Catwoman outfit for a bit of... roleplaying. All to no avail. She finds out that he is probably having an affair, tries to get it on with someone who claimed to be a preacher (But is actually a salesman.), and ends up soliciting advice from the guy instead. One night, Greg comes home drunk, they do it, and Cynthia suddenly gets an STD. To compound matters, her son, BJ (Richard Gutierrez), is discovering his sexuality a wee bit too soon, and she catches him on the Webcam, and then, err... loving himself in his room, and other rather... sticky situations.

Mylene is a Balikbayan whose husband, Rudy, is also a Balikbayan. They have a daughter who doesn’t know them because they were both gone for six years. To compound that, Rudy had an affair while he was in Australia, which led him to have a love child. Mylene’s attitude about all of this is rather tongue-in-cheek. She tries to follow everything she watches on VCD’s of Filipino films, and the fact that Judy Ann is portraying it is sort of a poke of fun at herself over her other less... comedic characters.

Lastly, Mandy is a single father of two with a maid who reads “Virginia Woolf” for leisure. He is a closet queen, who actually has a policeman for a boyfriend, Dante. His elder child, Dindo is trying to figure out if he’s gay, while his younger son, Buboy, is just there asking questions about different words. When his elder son finds out he’s gay and that he adopted him, he sets off each night to find his real mother. One night, while Mandy was discreetly following Dindo who runs into BJ, a snatcher tries to steal Dindo’s phone, and Mandy rushes into the rescue. The gay jokes here are really fun, as they even had enough room for song numbers left and right that just fit into the story (Unlike Ruffa Mae’s.).

In the end, all is well. It may seem like Deus Ex Machina, but this is a feel-good movie, so we’re not supposed to see much tragedy, anyway. The chorale finally performed to cap off the show, and of course, the song they sang was “I Will Survive”.

How the story comes together is simply brilliant. The comedy was crisp and witty, as the kids were given splendid material that didn’t make them seem too scripted or too contrived. They were performing very well, no question about it. I especially liked the song numbers because they were really integral to the story, and how all of them managed to resolve their respective issues with their children or partners. I cannot praise this film enough. I’m a sucker for these witty comedies, and ever since I saw Bridal Shower, I realized how well-written Filipino comedy could actually be when the opportunity is presented. I would’ve given out classic lines from the film, except that they’re mostly visual jokes that are just simply entertaining. With that being said, I really hope you guys who’re so antagonistic of Filipino films just ignore that bias and give this one a go.

There's no problem with any of the special effects, either. It's not like they had to shell out much. What they lacked in eye candy, they made up for in character depth, although the stereotypical one-dimensional characters were inserted to anchor the consistency of the story well enough.

I’d have wanted to give it a longer evaluation, but I don’t really see any good reason why... heh. It’s something I’d rather see people watch than for me to tell them more than they need to know about it.

Marcelle's "Fun" Evaluation: A+
Marcelle's "Critical Evaluation: A+

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