Verdict: Value for Money

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 3.17 (6 ratings)

Genre: Drama, Historical

Director: Joel Lamangan

Writer: Bonifacio Ilagan

Cast: Zsa Zsa Padilla, Tirso Cruz III, Gina Alajar, Jaime Pebanco, Marvin Agustin, Allen Dizon, Pauleen Luna, Lovi Poe, Megan Young, Jay Aquitana, Ayen Laurel, Rico Barrera and Dawn Zulueta, Dessa Rizalina E. Ilagan, Tony Mabesa, Raquel Villavicencio, Mon Confiado, Menggie Cobarrubias, Lui Manansala, Mercy Udaundo, Dennis Coronel

Synopsis: Sigwa (meaning “storm”) spans 40 years of Philippine social unrest. The story is initially told by Fil-Am Dolly, a junior correspondent of a US magazine, who was sent to the Philippines in 1970 to do a story on student activism in Manila. Today, she has returned after being arrested and deported in 1975, on the third year of martial law. Her mission is personal this time: to look for her daughter, who was supposed to have died 35 years ago, but who, she has been told, is alive. The film, being a composite of the stories of Dolly and each one of her former activist collective, is revealed fragment by fragment, as she surprises them by her unannounced presence.

Trailer: 

Reviews:

3.5          Elvin Luciano (PEP)

“Although Sigwa is told from the point of view of Zulueta’s character, this movie is impressive because it does not leave out the other characters. Through this film, Direk Joel shows his mastery in creating an ensemble film.” (Read full review)

3.5          Jamo Light (Pinoy Film)

“I don’t know what Joel Lamangan’s motivations were for not going outright left here – personal safety, wider acceptance or whatever else – but I like that he did. The entirety of it’s political overtones served merely as a backdrop. As a film about old friends and what’s happened to them in the years since they were separated, it succeeds above and beyond the call of duty.” (Read full review)

3.0          Fidel Antonio Medel (Pielated Popcorn)

“It might be a conscious decision on the filmmaker’s part to play it safe to be more palatable to the general public, and that’s understandable. But for a film that is meant to commemorate 40 years of civil unrest, I wish it had more balls.” (Read full review)

3.0          Nel Costales (Cine Filipinas)

“The film blends the star power and polished performances of a mainstream blockbuster with the relevant, edgy story of an indie film. It is not a smooth marriage because of the film’s difficulty in straddling the line between mainstream and indie filmmaking.” (Read full review)

3.0          John Silva (John’s Thoughts and Deeds)

“The baddest best actor was Tirso Cruz. You hated all of him, his cynical, tired, seen-it-all slouch. Maybe we’ve felt that at times and we’re drawn to his venality. We appreciate Tirso’s continued metamorphosis in roles befitting his years. Consider the fact that during the First Quarter Storm, or thereabouts, who could forget Tirso in the tight white pants and the sideburns as a rock star.” (Read full review)

2.5          Philbert Dy (Click the City)

“The film, as it moves from one life to another, paints a fuller picture of what it means to stand for something in a corrupt society. The film doesn’t quite reach its full potential, weighed down by staid filmmaking and a fairly dull viewing of the past. But there are hints of passion in the project, and that keeps the whole thing bearable.” (Read full review)