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Archive for December, 2012

MMFF Moviethon Day 3: Holy crap, a real horror movie!

December 29, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Movies 3 Comments →

In the MMFF! Amazing!

Summary: The upteenth rendition of the family-goes-on-an-excursion-then-their-van-breaks-down-in-the-middle-of-nowhere story proceeds to take the audience somewhere else. Genuinely creepy. Ignore Enchong Dee’s ridiculous beard and put him in an action movie.

Rating: 3.5 stars.

Recommendation: Watch!

Read our review at the MMFF 2012 Moviethon at InterAksyon.com.

MMFF Moviethon Day 2: Vice is hilarious. Ai Ai is hilarious. Kris is…Kris.

December 27, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Movies 1 Comment →

Summary: Vice Ganda is hilarious. Ai Ai de las Alas is hilarious. Kris Aquino is…Kris Aquino.

Rating: 3.5 3 stars because we get why Vice Ganda is the biggest box-office star in the country today.

Recommendation: Watch. Get your tickets early, screenings are packed.

Best Appearance by a Jonas Gaffud/Mercator model nominee: Daniel Matsunaga.

Read our review at InterAksyon.com.

MMFF Moviethon Day 2: Unshaken, unrattled, unrolled again

December 27, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Movies 2 Comments →

Three reasons we watched Shake, Rattle & Roll 14:
1. Our friend gave it a rave review. Or what passes for a rave review of an MMFF entry: “It doesn’t suck.”
2. All the episodes were directed by Chito Roño.
3. It’s become an annual tradition.

Summary: The first episode stars Arlene Muhlach, Janice De Belen and Herbert Bautista, making it a Shake, Rattle & Roll 1 reunion.

The second episode is like Predator mixed with Orapronobis (Bet you didn’t know that was possible).

The third episode is like Cabin in the Woods without the everything.

Rating: 2.5 stars. (Would’ve been higher if aswang had stolen all the soldiers’ uniforms in the second episode.)

Recommendation: If you have absolutely no expectations, are capable of entertaining yourself, and watch it with friends, you may enjoy it. Otherwise, pass.

Additional award category: Best appearance by a Jonas Gaffud/Mercator model. Nominees: JC Tiuseco, Fabio Ide.

Read our review at the MMFF Moviethon on InterAksyon.com.

How to make a scene

December 27, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Music 1 Comment →


Mat is reading How Music Works, Php1495 at National Bookstores. The cover is upholstered so he can use it as a pillow.

We just got a copy of How Music Works, the new book by David Byrne. It’s a memoir, a treatise, and a guide to the music business. While flipping through it we came upon Chapter 8: How to Make A Scene.

1. There must be a venue that is of appropriate size and location in which to present new material.

Remember Club Dredd? (And its precursors Katrina’s and Red Rocks.) Is Mayric’s still around? Hair product was a class issue. The kids with money used Dippity-Do gel, the kids with no money used paste. As in the stuff in colored tubes that you use for art class in grade school. (Some used egg white, toothpaste, whatever was available.) So when it rained, they would run for shelter to keep the gunk in their hair from washing off.

We weren’t in the scene, we were living in the stacks in the library, but many of our friends started bands and we got the stories.

2. The artists should be allowed to play their own material.

Ah. There are eight points, all of which apply to the Pinoy rock scene of the 90s.


David Byrne and Talking Heads in Stop Making Sense. From Music History in gifs

MMFF Moviethon Day 1: A woman’s worth

December 27, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Movies 3 Comments →

There is no Art vs. Commerce. Commerce won years ago.

Thy Womb (Sa ‘Yong Sinapupunan) comes to us already festooned with laurels from the international film festival circuit. It is exactly the type of movie that appeals to foreign film festival programmers: a portrait of marginalized folk in an exotic setting, full of the rituals and traditions of a community little seen in popular culture (Although Lamberto Avellana made a film called Badjao in 1957). The question is: Will local audiences go for it?

The old fiction was that filmmakers do not care about the box-office prospects of their movies. This fiction has been erased by the Metro Manila Film Festival, which has made commercial appeal the primary standard for selection. The awards are just another marketing hook: stars pitted against each other for fake prestige. How can we take seriously an awards show that hands out trophies not just for acting, directing and writing, but for best float and best sex appeal? If the MMFF were honest, the box-office results would be the awards.

It’s worth noting that the MMFF selection committee declined Thy Womb initially, even if it stars the great Nora Aunor and is directed by Brillante Ma Mendoza, who won the Best Director prize at Cannes a few years ago (before he affixed the ‘Ma’). Its inclusion in the filmfest slate is not due to the awards it has reaped in Italy, Australia and elsewhere, but to the non-completion of the eighth entry.

Our review of Thy Womb (Sa ‘Yong Sinapupunan) in our MMFF 2012 Moviethon on InterAksyon.com.

Thy Womb: Woman seeks wife for her husband

December 25, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Movies No Comments →

Summary: A childless Badjao couple in late middle age want a child of their own. In accordance with their laws, the woman embarks on a search for a second wife for her husband.
Quick review: Thoughtful, restrained, exceptionally well acted.
Rating: 3.8 4 stars (out of 5). The more you think about it, the better it gets.
Recommendation: If you want food for thought, yes. If you want the traditional Pinoy melodrama full of acting “highlights”, pass.
Full review tomorrow.

There are two fertility dramas in this year’s festival, and this is the award-winning one starring Nora Aunor and set among the Badjaos of Tawi-Tawi. Don’t be alarmed if you do not see “Thy Womb” at the box-office; it’s playing under its Tagalog title, “Sa Iyong Sinapupunan”. We saw the 8:15pm show at Greenbelt 3—all the other movies (Sisterakas, Enteng, Sosy, Strangers) were sold out, our screening was half-full. Watch this movie first.