IskalawagsVerdict: Essential Viewing

Pinoy Rebyu Score: 4.62 (4 ratings)

Genre: Drama

Director: Keith Deligero

Writers: Keith Deligero, Remton Zuasola, Gale Osorio, Erik Tuban (story)

Cast: Kerwin Otida, Reynaldo Formentera, Windel Otida, Johnreil Lunzaga, Micko Maurillo, Mark Lourence Montalban, Dionne Monsanto, Jeric Raval

Synopsis: One day, in the small  peaceful barrio of Malinawon, seven young punks who call themselves Iskalawags because of their shared love for Filipino action movies starred by their idol Jeric Raval, decide to set out on an adventure to find the tree that bears the biggest papaya fruit.

Trailer: 

Reviews:

5.0          Philbert Dy (Click the City)

“The film readily mixes tones of childish wonder, adolescent exploration, and profound loss. Great acting from the film’s seven non-professional leads gives the film an excess of charm. I could go on, but words really are futile in describing the strengths of Iskalawags.” (Read full review)

5.0          Manuel Pangaruy (Tagailog Special)

“Halos ayokong matapos ang pelikula. Ayokong umabot sa dulo na siguradong magpapabago sa kanilang samahan, maging ito man ay isang maayos na paghihiwalay o isang malungkot na pangyayari.” (Read full review)

4.5          Noli Manaig (Closely Watched Frames)

“What Keith Deligero’s Iskalawags perfectly evokes and captures are the territory and swagger of childhood, the picaresque adventures portrayed impishly, seen through the pellucid eyes of one of the gang, a pair somewhat welling with tears, a voice shifting with emotion and color, tinged with nostalgia and wonder, loss and regret.” (Read full review)

4.0          Skilty Labastilla (Young Critics Circle)

Iskalawags is deceptively simple. Upon first viewing it appears as a run-of-the-mill coming-of-age story of a group of boys in a rural setting. Sure, the film accurately portrays a specific life stage (adolescence) of a specific demographic (boys of low-income families) of a specific milieu (rural Visayan barrio) of a specific era (1990s), capturing a part of my own childhood in rural Mindanao. But upon closer inspection, it has something more profound to say about Pinoy masculinity and the politics of language.” (Review forthcoming)