Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay

Verdict: Essential Viewing

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 4.70 (23 ratings)

Genre: Comedy

Writer/Director: Antoinette Jadaone

Cast: Lilia Cuntapay, Geradine Malacaman Villamil

Synopsis: Lilia Cuntapay (playing herself) has spent decades in obscurity as an extra in horror movies, playing ghouls or aswang and all manner of hideous creature. Now, she’s been nominated for an acting award. This faux-documentary follows her as she prepares for the ceremony. She gets herself a dress, solicits advice from the people around her, and prepares an acceptance speech that gets longer everyday. And she continues to live the life of a professional extra, existing on the fringes of celebrity, clinging to triumphs even as tragedy moves in. (Click the City)

MTRCB Rating: GP

Running Time: 140 mins



5.0          Noel Vera (Cinemas of Asia)

“Real or reel, it all doesn’t really matter; Cuntapay is sui generis, a force all her own, by turns charming and infuriating, cunning and clueless, totally out-of-touch and completely plugged in.” (Read full review)

5.0          Philbert Dy (Click the City)

“It is a film that I will be recommending to people for years to come. Beyond the fact that it’s funny and smart and well made, I feel that it is representative of everything that I dream of for the new Filipino cinema.” (Read full review)

5.0          Jose Claro (Philippine Star)

“Although fictional or, at most, inspired by her life, Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay proves the star value of a lead actress is secondary only to the creativity and depth of the script. It is these kinds of films that will convince the most jaded youth that Filipinos can create movies that are more than the usual.” (Read full review)

5.0          Juaniyo Arcellana (Philippine Star)

“To Jadaone’s credit, the young director never takes herself too seriously, but invests her subject with warmth and sensitivity, making the viewer aware that in such a seemingly fickle industry, there’s never a lack of small, marginal players (read: extras) who are dedicated to the craft.” (Read full review)

5.0          Katrina Stuart Santiago (GMA News)

“What Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay proves is that there is a way of dealing with the more painful truths in this country, without romanticizing the suffering or forcing on us a hero.” (Read full review)

5.0          Don Jaucian (Pelikula Tumblr)

“What endears Six Degrees to viewers is its ability to approximate the Filipino dream into ‘nayLilia’s experience, that even the smidgen of a chance of accepting an award is enough of a cue to reassess our choices and relive the warm, happy memories while surrounding ourselves with the people we love.” (Read full review)

5.0          Age of Brillig

“I suspect it will enjoy a very healthy afterlife, studied and rewatched as a looming classic of Philippine cinema enhanced with, we hope, considerable international renown.” (Read full review)

5.0          Laurence Castillo (Bildungsroman)

“What Six Degrees wonderfully achieves is its brave and sympathetic resolve to purify Nanay Lilia’s abjection. The 93-minute indie film does not have us hurrying nor willing it to finish because every second is a moment of living with Nanay Lilia. We experience her jocular quips, her loud philosophizings, her random musings and witticisms – and we see her shed her tears. (Read full review)

5.0          Ria Limjap (

“It’s an inspiring story underneath all the cool pop culture references, the impressive celebrity cameos, and wonderful acting, this funny, touching, and fictionalized documentary on your tragicomic life. Also, I feel this is exactly the kind of movie the public deserves to see.” (Read full review)

5.0          Macky Macarayan (Death of Traditional Cinema)

“Giving a lead role for Lilia Cuntapay is brave and noble enough; to have her play herself and spill her guts out and make it beautiful and inspiring is something else- it is beyond comparison.” (Read full review)

5.0          Nicol Latayan (Tit for Tat)

“It does a lot more than just telling a story; it presented us this persona of a tour de force woman that will forever remain immortal in our eyes sans the aswang portrayals.” (Read full review)

5.0          Nel Costales (Sine Patrol)

“Jadaone’s film is a stunning meta-movie mind-fuck. It blurs the line between fiction and reality. All throughout the movie, one is left wondering what the truth is.” (Read full review)

5.0           Carl Papa (Whatever, Carl)

“Jadaone successfully meshed the personal and intimate with the funny without losing the movie’s charm.  She proves that she is one of the directors to look out for in the future.” (Read full review)

5.0           Jowana Bueser (The Birth of Damnation)

“Films like this are an indication Philippine Cinema is far from dead. No. It is not dead because Lilia Cuntapay is rockin’ it like a mad ghost.” (Read full review)

5.0           The Viewing Tank

“At the center of all this is the brilliant performance by Lilia Cuntapay. She’s good at both comedy and drama, reveling in the temporary highs of her glory days, and suffering quietly through the lows of her unappreciated 30 year career.” (Read full review)

4.5           Oggs Cruz (Twitch)

Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay succeeds not only because it seamlessly merges fact and fiction or because it manages to tackle a personality who exists in the margins of Filipino pop culture within a context of absolute familiarity but because it is genuinely touching.” (Read full review)

4.5           Ian Urrutia (Pinoy Cinema Tumblr)

“Funny thing is that the film doesn’t take itself too seriously, and the attempt to turn a carnival mirror on the showbiz industry is done subtly in good taste.” (Read full review)

4.5           Jerky San Pedro (The Daily Anomaly)

Six Degrees has a philosophical punch hidden underneath all its quirkiness and wit. And Cuntapay’s struggle and lack of recognition was the perfect vehicle for this agenda.” (Read full review)

4.0           Jessica Zafra (InterAksyon)

“We get a glimpse at the movie industry behind the glamor of its stars: the movie extras whose names we don’t know, their hand to mouth existence, the production assistants and crew who don’t get mentioned on awards night, the endless waiting, the people who live for the fleeting second when they appear on the screen and are crushed when they get edited out.” (Read full review)

4.0          Skilty Labastilla (Young Critics Circle)

“Seamlessly directed, crowd-pleasing underdog comedy is a critique against the country’s media and showbiz culture. But the film wisely sidesteps the tendency to preach and lets the audience think for themselves. A tribute not only to Ms. Cuntapay but to all bit players in show business who have worked in the industry for most of their lives but will forever remain in the background because they lack the looks or the right connections to make it big.”

4.0          Fidel Antonio Midel (Pixelated Popcorn)

“Lilia Cuntapay, the most popular extra in Philippine showbiz, finally gets her first lead role. Genius concept. It’s amazing how the director seamlessly interspersed reality and fiction. Lilia Cuntapay is comedy gold. But the film also managed to pull some heart strings as well. Another proof that Cinema One Originals produce kick-ass movies. MUST-SEE!”


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