Barber’s Tales

1-Barbers Tales PosterVerdict: Essential Viewing

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 4.31 (8 ratings)

Genre: Drama

Writer/Director: Jun Lana

Cast: Eugene Domingo, Iza Calzado, Shamaine Buencamino, Nonie Buencamino, Gladys Reyes, Nicco Manalo, Sue Prado, Daniel Fernando, Eddie Garcia

Synopsis: The year is 1975. Marilou (Eugene Domingo) is the wife of Jose (Daniel Fernando), the only barber in a small, provincial town. She lives completely subservient to her husband, obeying his every whim and turning a blind eye to his extramarital activities. And then one day, he dies in bed. Marilou, who has been cutting her husband’s hair all these years, reluctantly takes over the barber shop. Soon, she becomes embroiled in the affairs of the town’s mayor (Nonie Buencamino) and his long-suffering wife (Iza Calzado), and finds herself harboring rebels from the oppressive regime. (Click the City)

MTRCB rating: R-13

Running time: 119 mins

Trailer: 

Reviews:

5.0         Rito Asilo (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

“The film benefits from Lana’s resilient skill at piecing together the deceptively complex patterns of his ornate tales, boosted further by an outstanding cast—most notably, Calzado, Reyes, the Buencamino couple and Sue Prado (as a manipulative hooker)—that vigorously  keeps up with the production’s thematic and dramatic ambitions.” (Read full review)

5.0         Rob San Miguel (Brun Philippines)

“The ensemble cast is amazing, a perfect example of underrated acting that highlights the characters more than the actors. Not a single performance was flawed. Everyone was in top form regardless of screen time. Leading the pack is Eugene Domingo, who gave the best performance of her career so far.” (Read full review)

4.5         Fred Hawson (Fred Said)

“Lana, fresh from his success with Bwakaw last year, comes up with yet another excellent character study.  What he does for gay senior citizens in the first film, he does for women in this film. On top of that, he adds on a layer of interesting historical and social commentary which for me, makes this film even better and substantive than Bwakaw.” (Read full review)

4.5         Irvin Malcolm Contreras (A Girl and a Gun)

“Eugene Domingo is a well-known broad comedienne in my country. She takes the lead in a drama and runs away with it. She’s supported by an excellent supporting cast especially Gladys Reyes as her perpetually pregnant neighbor.” (Read full review)

4.0         Oggs Cruz (Rappler)

“Its rhythm is gradual and measured, never rushing only for the sake of plot. The film is peppered with humor, which seems to poke fun at how men, who are depicted in the film as either weak or needy, are subservient to women despite their control.” (Read full review)

4.0         Pablo Tariman (Philippine Star)

“Everything about Barber’s Tales illumines a riveting story so simple and yet so encompassing in its hold on the audience. Lana as director and scriptwriter is an honest-to-goodness storyteller, who unravels his tale of love, lust and betrayal with cold, if, objective candor.” (Read full review)

4.0         Bernard Santos (My Movie World)

“Nagustuhan ko kung paano isinulat ang pelikulang ito at kung paano inilahad ang istorya. Habang pinapanood mo ang pelikula ay unti unti mong nakikilala at lumalim ang bawat character sa pelikula.” (Read full review)

3.5         Philbert Dy (Click the City)

“The film sometimes stumbles in putting together its scenes, stray details undermining the overall effect. But the presence of Eugene Domingo ultimately brings it all together, the actress’ stellar performance overcoming some of the film’s clumsier tendencies.” (Read full review)

Trophy Wife

Trophy WifeVerdict: Proceed with Caution

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 2.17 (3 ratings)

Genre: Drama

Director: Andoy Ranay

Writer: Keiko Aquino

Cast: Cristine Reyes, Derek Ramsay, Heart Evangelista, John Estrada

Synopsis: Some time ago, while passing through Angeles City, Chino (Derek Ramsay) had a tryst with Lani (Cristine Reyes). Their relationship didn’t end well, Chino leaving the naive Lani feeling betrayed and abandoned. Now, Chino is surprised to find that Lani is now married to his brother Sammy (John Estrada). In the time since Chino left her, she’s been carefully plotting her revenge. She soon draws Chino, his brother, and his current girlfriend Gwen (Heart Evangelista) into a complex game of seduction and betrayal. (Click the City)

MTRCB rating: R-13

Running time: 110 mins

Trailer: 

Reviews:

3.0         Pinoy Exchange

“Upon watching the trailer of Trophy Wife on television, one may easily surmise that it is one of those run-of-the-mill Filipino movies. Viewers however are in for a surprise in every corner as twist after twist are dropped. It could be an exciting viewing experience, if one could get past sketchy production design.” (Read full review)

2.0         Zig Marasigan (Rappler)

Trophy Wife does provide some interesting twists to an old story, but the results are so undeniably convoluted, and so ridiculously unbelievable, that it’s difficult to take the film seriously.” (Read full review)

1.5         Philbert Dy (Click the City)

“The film simply lacks the conviction to follow its story through, to commit to the zaniness of its plot. What results is utter nonsense, and nothing worth watching.” (Read full review)

She’s Dating the Gangster

Shes-Dating-the-Gangster-Movie-PosterVerdict: Value for Money

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 3.25 (8 ratings)

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Director: Cathy Garcia-Molina

Writer: Carmi Raymundo (based on the novel of Bianca Bernardino)

Cast: Kathryn Bernardo, Daniel Padilla, Dawn Zulueta, Richard Gomez

Synopsis: She’s Dating the Gangster splits its story between two time periods. In present day, Kenneth (Daniel Padilla) is traveling to Legaspi, hoping to find his father Kenji (Richard Gomez) among the survivors of a plane crash. He’s accompanied by Kelay (Kathryn Bernardo), who insists that her aunt Athena is actually Kenji’s great love. As they travel, Kelay tells Kenneth their story. In the early nineties, a heartbroken Kenji (also played by Daniel Padilla) enlists the aid of Athena (Kathryn Bernardo) in the hopes of making his ex-girlfriend Abigail jealous. While the two don’t really get along at first, their game of pretend turns into something real. (Click the City)

MTRCB rating: PG

Running time: 105 mins

Trailer: 

Reviews:

3.5         Oggs Cruz (Twitch)

She’s Dating the Gangster is not art. It is still a film designed and crafted for escape, the ones Garcia-Molina, with her knack for fake hairpieces and dreamy fantasies, is so good at making. It is however entertainment that is self-aware.” (Read full review)

3.5         Philbert Dy (Click the City)

She’s Dating the Gangster is at its best when it allows kids to be kids. Its portrayal of young, intensely romantic love is really charming, especially placed as it is in this wacky conception of its period setting. It’s a bit of a shame that the story had to try so hard to bring big, mortal choices into the picture.” (Read full review)

3.5         Rito Asilo (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

She’s Dating The Gangster is weighed down by a shrill and too-eager-to-please beginning, but grows on you as it slowly finds its footing. The story that plays out onscreen is far from seamless, but the movie’s inspired sections make it greater than the sum of its disjointed parts.” (Read full review)

3.5         Fred Hawson (Fred Said: Movies)

“Both sets of actors have so much positive chemistry with each other that it radiates through the screen into the movie theater. They do not even have to speak to titillate their rapt audiences.” (Read full review)

3.0         Zig Marasigan (Rappler)

She’s Dating the Gangster is a teen love story peppered with surprisingly mature themes. But at the end of the day, it’s a love story that doesn’t fight hard enough or dig deep enough. It’s a film that is admittedly delightful, and satisfyingly charming, but it’s also a film that doesn’t challenge its material or its characters.” (Read full review)

3.0         Aya Tantiangco (Spot.ph)

“It’s like a play William Shakespeare himself wrote, before he got his act together and made something more intense… It’s more than a little contrived but Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla manage to manage to insert a bit of dialogue that adds a bit of fresh insight to the formula.”  (Read full review)

3.0         Julia Allende (PEP)

“She’s Dating the Gangster is a charming and entertaining romp made for teenagers, many of whom believe that love—no, great love—triumphs in the end. But filmmakers should not underestimate the intelligence of youngsters and should be brave enough to explore the deeper and, yes, the darker side of love.” (Read full review)

3.0         Pinoy Exchange

She’s Dating the Gangster combines kilig with drama with a properly-paced story. It exploits the chemistry between Daniel Padilla and Kathryn Bernardo and runs away with it. The film however suffers from bad production design that seems staged as well as sluggish character development.” (Read full review)

Mula Sa Kung Ano Ang Noon

Mula sa Kung AnoVerdict: Essential Viewing

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 4.33 (3 ratings)

Genre: Drama

Writer/Director: Lav Diaz

Cast: Perry Dizon, Roeder, Hazel Orencio, Karenina Haniel, Reynan Abcede, Mailes Kanapi, Ian Lomongo, Joel Saracho, Evelyn Vargas

Synopsis: The Philippines, 1972. Mysterious things are happening in a remote barrio. Wails are heard from the forest, cows are hacked to death, a man is found bleeding to death at the crossroad and houses are burned. Ferdinand E. Marcos announces Proclamation No. 1081 putting the entire country under Martial Law.

Running time: 338 mins.

*

Trailer: 

Reviews:

5.0         Oggs Cruz (Rappler)

“Diaz, by weaving together those tales into a single epic, has summarized a country’s painful history not with facts and dates but with impressions and emotions. Mula Sa Kung Saan Ang Noon is sustained by evocative tableaus of human beings in various degrees of personal, spiritual and political strife.” (Read full review)

4.0         Rito Asilo (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

“The movie’s unorthodox rhythms and lengthy screening time allow the characters to get under viewers’ skin—and, by the time you leave the theater, you develop a lived-in familiarity and affinity to them.” (Read full review)

4.0         Renelson Morelos (Ramblings of a Film Urchin)

Noon.. is surprisingly accessible. That is, less are the hazy abstractions, but more is a perceptive humanism, a quality which made Batang West Side and Norte the great films that they are.”  (Read full review)

Overtime

OvertimeVerdict: Value for Money

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 3.00 (3 ratings)

Genre: Thriller, Comedy

Directors: Wincy Aquino Ong, Earl Ignacio

Writer: Wincy Aquino Ong

Cast: Richard Gutierrez, Lauren Young, Mitch Valdes, Bearwin Meily, Roadfill, Renz Valerio, Roi Vinzon

Synopsis: Jody (Lauren Young) is the sole breadwinner of her family. She works for a large pharmaceutical company that’s just been accused of illegal human testing. Jody has been tasked with putting a major press conference where the company will deny these claims. Stressed out, she decides to blow off some steam by finally meeting up with a guy she’s been chatting with online. She and Dom (Richard Gutierrez) hit it off, and decide to spend the night together at a hotel. Jody wakes up drugged, however, with a bomb strapped to her torso. Dom tells Jody to set off the bomb at the press conference, or harm will come to her family. (Click the City)

MTRCB rating: R-13

Trailer: 

Reviews:

3.5         Zig Marasigan (Rappler)

“It’s a film that is as rough as it is irreverent and as perverse as it is amusing. But while this may all be characteristic of some sort of narrative inconsistency, it strangely comes together through a Frankenstein-like work of comedy.” (Read full review)

3.0         Jecoup Asombrado (Pinoy Exchange)

Overtime is a strange, strange movie but I can’t help but be drawn to its eccentricity. I wish the plotting was better but if you want a dose of twisted sense of humor then you go should go check this one out.” (Read full review)

2.5         Philbert Dy (Click the City)

“The most common complaint directed towards the mainstream is that they keep making the same film over and over. Whatever else might be said this film, it certainly wouldn’t merit that particular knock. But the messiness of the back half just can’t be entirely ignored.”  (Read full review)

Ang Bagong Dugo

Ang-Bagong-Dugo-movie-posterVerdict: Do Something Else

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 1.83 (3 ratings)

Genre: Action

Director: Val Iglesias

Writer: Angelito San Jose

Cast: Joem Bascon, Mark Gil, Dick Israel, Roi Vinzon, Monsour del Rosario, Alma Concepcion, Efren Reyes

Synopsis: Ang Bagong Dugo kicks off with Anong (Joem Bascon) attempting an assassination in broad daylight. After a brief chase, he’s arrested and sent off to prison. There, he tangles with the goons of the man he tried to kill, and is taken under the wing of Herman (Mark Gil), one of the prison’s most powerful residents. But unbeknownst to all the inmates, Anong has a secret agenda. His imprisonment is all part of an elaborate plot to get revenge against the man who murdered his father years ago. (Click the City)

MTRCB rating: R-16

Running time: 90 mins.

Trailer: 

Reviews:

2.0         Oggs Cruz (Rappler)

“It is wildly entertaining, but not in the way that was presumably intended. Intriguingly, it is its missteps and excesses that provide the film most of its enjoyment value.” (Read full review)

2.0         Pinoy Exchange

“While most of the actors in this movie deliver outstanding performances, the plot is shaky and dated at best, comedic at its worst… Unfortunately, Ang Bagong Dugo won’t usher in the renaissance they were hoping for.” (Read full review)

1.5         Philbert Dy (Click the City)

“There are moments where the film seems utterly convinced of its own pathos. But in the end, it’s all just really, really dumb. At best, the movie is a laughable attempt to recreate some of the goofy magic of 90s local action cinema. It’s often much worse than that, however.”  (Read full review)

My Illegal Wife

Illegal WifeVerdict: Do Something Else

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 1.50 (4 ratings)

Genre: Comedy

Director: Tony Reyes

Writers: Danno Kristopher Mariquit, Kriz Gazmen

Cast: Pokwang, Zanjoe Marudo, Ellen Adarna

Synopsis: Clarise (Pokwang) is another hopeless romantic obsessed with finding a husband. But after she is let go from her job as an entertainer in Japan, she meets the dashing young Henry (Zanjoe Marudo) aboard a plane home to the Philippines. But when the plane crashes and lands on a remote island in the Philippines, Henry suffers a severe case of amnesia. In order to satiate her obsession to find a husband, Clarise jumps at the opportunity to fool Henry into thinking that she is his wife. But when Clarise and Henry are finally rescued, their illegitimate marriage threatens to fall apart when Henry slowly regains his memory. (Rappler)

MTRCB rating: PG

Running time: 115 mins.

Trailer: 

Reviews:

2.0         Oggs Cruz (Spot.ph)

My Illegal Wife projects a nation dangerously addicted to escape and conglomerates that are quick to profit from the addiction. Predictably, most of the audience will likely leave theaters fleetingly amused. Hopefully, a few will absorb this horrid point that is ingeniously veiled in awful jokes and bad filmmaking.” (Read full review)

1.5         Zig Marasigan (Rappler)

“With neither its characters nor its comedy coming together in the way it should, My Illegal Wife becomes the butt of its own joke. In its frantic attempt to copy other films, it forgets to become something of its own.”  (Read full review)

1.5         Cathy Peña (Make Me Blush)

“The movie runs with a succession of parody that doesn’t quite synthesize into a singular coherent narrative. It’s a feast of paper-thin caricatures.” (Read full review)

1.0         Pinoy Exchange

My Illegal Wife suffers from a contrived plot and boxed characters. While it tried to use parody as a tool for comedy, it fails because the parodies were somewhat limited and unnecessary.” (Read full review)

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