News Clippings Collection is Back! 1/3

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Angel Bows Out of Darna Movie – Due to a medical problem, Angel Locsin will no longer reprise her iconic superheroine title role in the upcoming Star Cinema movie Darna. In a statement, Kane Errol Choa, head of ABS-CBN Corporate Communications, said that Angel had to bow out of the project after she suffered a disc bulge in her spine while training for the movie. The 29-year old actress, who first played the Mars Ravelo comics character on television in 2005, will also need to undergo rehabilitation and treatment. Fortunately, her medical condition is treatable, and recovery may take six to eight months a report on TV Patrol revealed. In a TV interview on Oct 26, Angel publicly broke the news that she has to give up her Darna role as she was diagnosed with an injury to her interverbral disc, where the disc bulges out between the vertebrae and presses on a nerve causing severe pain and numbness. “Kapag amy trabaho, binibigay ko talaga ‘yong best ko. Ganun ko kamahal ‘yong craft. “yong role inaalagaan ko…so kapag may nirequire na mga stunts, ginagawa ko talaga lahat…iniiwasan ko gumamit ng double. Kasi gusto ko ipakita sa mga tao, ako ang binabayaran mo dito. Ako ang gagawa ng mga mahihirap na bagay,” Angel explained. “Kaya habang tumatagal sa dami ng mga stunts na ginawa ko, sa dami ng harness and all…nagkaroon ako ng problema sa spine.” she said. “Kami po ng ABS-CBN, nagkapagusap kami na mas nakakabuti para sa lahat, na hindi ko napo gagawin ang Darna. Nagpapasalamat ako sa ABS kasi iniisip nila ang future ko.” Angel also shared that the pain she feels is unbearable. “May time na ilang days, hindi ako nakalakad. May isang araw gumising na lang ako, hindi na ako makatayo…ni gapang, ni hatak sa sarili ko hindi ko magawa.” She said she was rushed to hospital at that time. “Kinabahan na ako kasi iba siay sa mga dating nararamdama ko.” At present, Angel is undergoing therapy and also considering having a medical operation abroad. Angel assured her fans that she’ll be okay, she’s not leaving showbusiness and she would do those actionn scenes again in the future. “Don’t worry, magpapagaling lang ako. Magpapalakas ako.” she said.” – Planet Philippines London Edition, November 2015 (READ MORE)

Emotional Xian Surprises Co-stars, Press – “Xian Lim got emotional when Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos-Recto, Angel Locsin and director Bb. Joyce Bernal gave positive feedback on his work in Star Cinema’s latest offering titled, Everything About Her. It can be remembered that during the film’s principal photography, the Kapamilya star got flaks from bashers, questioning his inclusion in the project considering that its with two award-winning actresses and he hasn’t proven anything yet in the acting department. “I’m really grateful to be part of this wonderful project,” says Xian. “My heartfelt thanks to Star Cinema for the trust. The same goes to Direk Joyce. Tita Vi and Angel. Their encouraging words I will foreverl treasure. They’ve given me the chance to show everything I’ve got. It’s a huge honor to work with them.” The appealing lad considers the experience as part of a learning process. “Yes…If I really want to stay long in the industry. Tita Vi told me that I still have a lot to learn and discover to further hone my craft and I took her advice by heart. That’s why I’m appreciative of all those who expressed their concern on me at the height of the controversy. I’m grateful that they boosted my morale then despite all the criticisms from my detractors.” Speaking of the bad press he got. Xian is clueless why he received such. “It came to my attention when we were already mid-way in shooting the movie. In case many don’t know, I read write-ups about me so I know what to maintain or improve on. In truth, before I started filming, I already had a feeling that issues like this would crop up. In a way, I was really anticipating this angle to be played up. So what I did was to turn the negative into positive. Of course I got hurt with the tirades on my acting, but I didn’t let it ruin my disposition and whole being. Instead, I gave my best in the movie, I gave my best in the movie. I used it as a motivating tool and I guess, it worked!” Hearing the positive remarks from his illustrious co-stars and directors is more than enough for the popular actor. “It really feels good that Tita Vi, Angel and Direk Joyce came to defense. Their nice words are an attestation that I did well. To reiterate, I’m very honored to be part of this huge project. Definitely, it marks another milestone in my career,”ends Xian.” – Joseph Peter Gonzales, The Standard, 25 January 2016 (READ MORE)

Political Climate in 1984 – “Like the fascist dictator, Adolf Hitler, Ferdinand Marcos labelled his political opponents “communists.” The most prominent victim of his communist with-hunt was Ninoy Aquino. To be branded as a communist under the dictatorship meant one could be subject to a warrantless arrest or forced disappearance. With a president delusional with the thought that he was beyond criticism, most Filipinos opted to be politically indifferent during the Marcos regime. This was the position mirrored by Sister Stella Legaspi at the beginning of Sister Stella L.” – Emmanuel Anastacio Reyes, Notes on Philippine Cinema (Collected Writings on Cinema) (READ MORE)

Political Climate in 1984 – “After declaring Martial Law in 1972, Marcos outlawed strikes and rallies to give the country a semblance of economic stability before the eyes of foreign investors. To enforce his edict, Marcos used the military and the police to harass, abduct, torture or murder those who openly challenged his rule. Remnants of this practice continue to haunt the country today.” – Emmanuel Anastacio Reyes, Notes on Philippine Cinema (Collected Writings on Cinema) (READ MORE)

Real Life Drama – “…Luis also took the time to quash rumors that he and Angel had been seeing one another while in realtionship with other people. It was in October last year that both Angel and Luis broke up with their exes, Phil Younghusband and Jennylyn Mercado, respectively. “How is that even possible? For three years na walang text, walang kahit ano. In fact, Angle was even scared to see me for the first time kasi iniisip niya, there’s so much negativity between us. That’s why we also didn’t want to see each other. Naiisip namin, kapag nagkita kami, it would bridge negativity. We were in that stage. So, how could I be the reason of their breakup, and how could she be the reason of my breakup?” he testified. He also emphatically denied that Angel was the reason for his breakup with Jennylyn. “Hell no,” he exclaimed. For her part, Jennylyn has stated that she is moving on and would rather busy herself with work. On the other hand, Angel’s ex-boyfriend Phil denied he was the one who got Denise Oca (daughter of character actress Melissa Mendez) pregnant, or that domestic issues or money matters were the cause of their breakup, while still professing his continuing love for Angel. Since then, Luis and Angel have gotten back together as a couple, and in the process, have become dramatically more open, more loving, and more tender. Having matured much since they broke up nearly five years ago, they are now much more a part of each other’s lives. On Instagram, they often post pictures of themselves kissing and hugging as well as photos of Luis giving Angel a bouquet of scarlet roses for Valentine’s Day on the set of The Legal Wife and Angel even guesting on Minute to Win It, the local franchise of the television game show that Luis used to host. Most heartwarming of all are the photographs of Luis at Angel’s family reunion and of Angel together with Luis’ mother, Star for All Seasons and Batangas Governor Vilma Santos, his stepfather Senator Ralph Recto and his stepbrother Ryan Christian Recto. In and interview with StarStudio, Luis confirmed that Angel get his mother’s vote. “Oo naman, that’s why I could watch them on their own, I was stepping back, I was talking to Ryan (his younger brother Ryan Christian) while they were having a girls’ moment.” He also has the approval of Angel’s family. “I was always in touch with the Ate. Even nu’ng birthday ni Tito (Angel’s father Angelo Colmenares) I would send a bithday greeting…I guess we simply continued where we left ouff after the first relationship. That’s why we still have that bond, we still have that relationship,” he explains…” – Rome Jorge, Francis Simeon, Photo Credit: Allan Sancon, TFC All Access, May-June 2014 (READ MORE)

Angel Locsin is with Vilma Santos in new movie – “Angel Locsin open 2016 by having the privilege of working for the first time with Star For All Seasons Vilma Santos and director Joyce Bernal. Angel described the veteran actress as kind, gracious, very professional, and open to everyone. The award-winning actress and Batangas Governor is also the mother of Angel’s boyfriend Luis Manzano. In the movie entitled “Everything About Her,” Vilma plays Vivian, a cancer-afflicted but strict CEO of a big company, Angel plays Jaica, a nurse tasked to take care of Vilma’s character. Actor Xian Lim is Vivian’s son, Albert, who felt neglected all his life. “Everything About Her” is scheduled to be released on January 27.” – The Filipino Journal, January 20 – February 5, 2016

Mga Tigre ng Isang Mansyon – “…The expansive dining room features an old-fashioned banggera, where table ware and glasses are left to air-dry. This area of the house figured prominently in the 1972 shooting of the Vilma Santos-Dante Rivero-Charito Solis war-themed movie, “Mga Tigre ng Sierra Cruz”. A utility wing is conjoined with the dining area. A small veranda and the white-tiled bathroom are found here, complete with claw foot porcelain tubs and modern plumbing. Space flows from one room to another leading you to the kitchen and semi-enclosed azotea with stairs that you down almost down the Sapang Balen bank. In its prime, the Morales mansion was furnished with the latest furniture from the House of Puyat: 6-footer book shelves to hold Don Rafael’s legal tomes, tryptich tocador, plateras and a hat and cane stand. In the ante-sala, the portraits of the family forebears, Apung Palu and Apung Quintin, cast their steady gaze on arriving visitors. A life-size wedding picture of Don Rafael and Dña Belen was the focal point of the living room. A large mirror with elaborate etched designs also was hung there. The well-tended gardens were lush with rosals, palms, San Francisco, agave and other succulents. Kamias, mango and acacia trees provided fruits and shady canopies all year-round. As late as the 1970s, reunion parties, soirees and basketball games were held in the courtyard and the wide cemented grounds…” – Alex R. Castro, Views From The Pampang, 10 December 2008 (READ MORE)

Vilma, Tsuper Hero winners at Indie Fest – “Vilma Santos (left), as Loida Malabanan in Ekstra (The Bit Player), won the award of Merit Special Mention for Lead Actress, and Tsuper Hero (Filipino Jeepney Driver/Hero), as short film by Ernest John Talusan (right) an Award of Merit in the 7th IndieFest Film Awards in La Jolla, California, USA. Other international actresses who won the Award of Merit Special Mention for Lead Actress were Kris Torhaug and Natalie Neilson for Chasing Rainbows (USA), Corinna Coroneo for La Scultura (Italy) and Jenny Lampa for The Break-in (Sweden). The 11-minute Tsuper Hero “tells the difficulties of a Filipino jeepney driver Radfol Pilones) earning enough money to send his daughter to college even if he ends up risking his own life.” It will be screened in the 8th Tottering Biped Film Festival in Burlington, Canada, March 6 to 7. A global film competition for cinematic gems and unique voices and promoting filmmakers to a global audience, the film awards was established in 2009 to give talented directors, producers, actors, creative teams and new media creators the positive exposure they deserve.” – The Philippine Star, 02 March 2015

There Will Be Blood – “In Philippine Cinema, sex is often depicted as a source of trauma rather than pleasure for a woman. Hence what emerges from her body is blood and we see plenty of it trickling down her legs as when she gets taped, has a miscarriage or an abortion. In Tagos ng Dugo (1987) directed by Maryo de los Reyes, the lead character played by Vilma Santos turns into a killer each time she has her painful menstrual period. The cramps that drive her crazy is a condition that she associates with having been rapes as a young girl.” – Emmanuel Anastacio Reyes, Notes on Philippine Cinema (Collected Writings on Cinema) (READ MORE)

Transformed Fan – “…The enviable task of fetching Vilma from an undisclosed hotel to be brought to the house was assigned to my father. To get to the shooting venue without attracting the attention of the motley crowd to get a glimpse of the stars, Vilma was whisked off to our own house which had a connecting passage to my relatives’place…For the next three days, I fell under the spell of Ate Vi—easily transforming me from a Noranian to Vilmanian. More so when, during a lull moment in the shoot, I had the gumption to talk to her (her co-star Dante Rivero refused to be interviewed!), and I even managed to put on tape our short conversation which began with her greeting ”To all the people of Mabalacat, I love you all!!”. Who wouldn’t be charmed by her sweetness? (Though I bet that was a standard line she said to ALL the people in ALL the towns she visited)…On her own, Vi was just as sensational, assuming iconic roles as Darna and Dyesebel (1973) and jumping into the disco bandwagon with hits like ”Rock, Baby Rock”, “Good Mornings, Sunshine” and “Disco Fever”—all done in the 70s…The winsome “Ate Vi” that I met 4 decades ago, continues to shine like a true star that she is—a star for all seasons, for all Kapampangans to be proud of…” – Alex R. Castro, Views From The Pampang, 10 September 2008 (READ MORE)

Lost Cassette Tape – “…We live right next to my granduncle’s 1924 mansion, an old, rambling two-storey house with a period look and a photogenic façade, located in Sta. Ines. It was no wonder then that a film outfit, Lea Productions, decided to rent the uninhabited Morales mansion for two days, to serve as a shooting location for the wartime movie, “Mga Tigre ng Sierra Cruz”, in the summer of 1974. This was no ordinary movie as it starred no less than the star for all seasons, Vilma Santos, still a teener at that time, whose Kapampangan roots were in nearby Bamban, Tarlac. Of course, our whole family was consumed with excitement—and so was the whole Mabalacat town, as word got around that indeed, Ate Vi, was coming to town! Our family was mobilized by the producers to assist in ensuring a smooth, trouble-free shoot on the day of the filming which was to take place late at night. My father was even assigned to fetch Vilma Santos from her lodge in Dau and taken to the shooting venue through our house. But the moment the shooting lights went on, scores of town people appeared from nowhere to gawk at the cinematic goings-on. Still, being relatives and the unofficial caretaker of the house, we—and a platoon of relatives who came all the way from Manila to stargaze, had the front seats to the shooting. Director Augusto “Totoy” Buenaventura was in command the whole time, calling take after take…The best part of the shoot was meeting the stars of the movie in person. I became an instant Ate Vi fan when she obliged the townpeople gathered outside the gate with a personal appearance, waving her hands to the crowd below from the balcony. The whole town just went mad. Later, with my portable cassette recorder, I even managed to interview Ate Vi, asking how she could possibly retain her composure despite her stardom. I asked a lot of showbiz questions that would put Ricky Lo to shame. I kept playing our recorded conversations for months after that, until I lost the cassette tape…I don’t think “Mga Tigre ng Sierra Cruz” made a killing in the box office, either. Many shootings have been held at the grand Morales mansion since then—the most recent one was undertaken by U.P. film students in March 2009. But old folks who pass by the street still point to the old mansion and refer to it as “the house where they shot the movie ‘Mga Tigre ng Sierra Cruz’ starring Vilma Santos and Dante Rivero”. The magic of that cinematic moment of over 30 years ago still is remembered, enriching the history of the house. Now that’s entertainment!” – Alex R. Castro, Views From The Pampang, 02 November 2009 (READ MORE)

Who Wins The Acting Contest – “…The movie comes to a head when the two women discover each other’s identities. Rex realizes that the thrill he gets when he’s skydiving, a feeling that he belongs to everyone and to no one, is what he has been seeking by indulging in both affairs at the same time. Ultimately, the movie asks: Is love a form of wealth that should be equitably distributed? When Rex finally confesses to both of his female lovers that he cannot live without either one of them, he tells them: “Sino ba’ng makapagsasabing: ‘Ito ay akin.’ ‘Siya ay akin.’ ‘Ikaw ay akin.’” (Who can truly say: ‘This is mine.’ ‘She is mine.’ ‘You are mine.’) Echoes of this same question resonate in one protracted scene right after Tere and Rex have made love. As they shift in bed, when a lover’s arm is on top of the beloved’s body, who is owning whom? The other question begging to be answered is “Who wins the acting contest?” Nora or Vilma? Nora plays Tere as an immovable object, quiet in her practicality. Vilma plays Sandra as an irresistible force, flamboyant in her vulnerability. But the real winner here is the director Bernal who deftly channels his two actresses’ unique gifts into the kinds of characters that each of them can perfectly inhabit. Mr. Bernal layers his scenes with his film’s main theme. When Rex shoots darts, he only plays with three — a red one and two in black. When Rex visits Sandra in the hospital, he lends her three books. It is a deceptively simple movie that is rich with many meanings. If only subtext were a form of wealth that can be equitably distributed across all of Philippine cinema…” – Noel Orosa, Business World Online, 23 February 2016 (READ MORE)

High-wire Balancing Act – “You’ll have a hard time finding an actress busier than Vilma Santos these days, but the seeming ease with which she juggles her chores as a movie queen, a hands-on wife and mother and a dynamic public servant demonstrates how she embodies the prized appellation attached to her name: Vilma is the Star for All Seasons—and Reasons! She works very hard, but she makes the high-wire balancing act look like a walk in the park. Ate Vi, who’s on her last term as the first female governor of Batangas, was in the middle of meetings when we texted and asked her for an interview for this piece last month, but it took her only a few minutes to reply—no annoying handlers, no cordon sanitaire. She doesn’t make you feel like her schedule is more important than yours. One time, she called us at 9 a.m. so we could meet our deadline for an article that we were writing for NUT (Nestor Torre, editor of Saturday Special). Another time, we got a call from her a few minutes after deplaning from her US trip! Would other big stars be as accessible—and approachable? The actress’ answers are as honest as they’re straightforward, but she isn’t beyond asking you for your opinion about the issues being discussed—from Pia Wurtzbach’s triumph as the country’s first Miss Universe in 42 years (“Regardless of the mixup, the crown belongs to her now”) to the phenomenal tandem of Alden Richards and Maine “Yaya Dub” Mendoza (“What they have is a gift—but they need to sustain their popularity with projects that’d prove that they’re more than just overnight sensations”). Her impeccable people skills and her openness for discussion and discourse are among the reasons why the 62-year-old acting icon is good at what she does: She doesn’t just talk—she also listens…” – Rito P. Asilo, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 08 January 2016 (READ MORE)

Tita Fe – “…But perhaps the strongest applause, the hardest laughs, and loudest cheers of the night came from the solid Vilmanians. Felicidad Pua, or Tita Fe, made sure that her grandchildren’s school clothes were neatly ironed before leaving her home in Padre Faura, Manila. She looked neat too, wearing a Vilma 50th Showbiz Anniversary Shirt, while holding a magazine where Ate Vi is cover. After all, it was a big night for her, her fellow Vilmanians and their icon. Tita Fe is a member of the Vilma Santos Solid International Inc. (VSSI), an organization of Vilmanians devoted to support the actress-politician’s every endeavor. She claims they have a thousand-strong membership roster, with members coming from all over the world. The group is also actively campaigning to have Vilma Santos declared as National Artist. Judging by her faded VSSI photo card, it wasn’t hard to believe when she said she has been a Vilmanian for well over three decades. (I wonder if Twilight fanatics can remain faithful to their fandom for just as long.) After learning that this blogger is from UP, she said she was there too, when Vilma Santos received the Gawad Plaridel recognition by the College of Mass Communication back in 2005. Tita Fe said she arrived with other VSSI folks in serviced vehicles with members coming from as far as the provinces Ilocos and Pampanga. Most of them were wearing the annniversary shirt (photographed above) in either black or yellow. I asked how she liked the film after seeing it, and she smiles before replying “Kailangan pa bang itanong ‘yan.” And I smiled back. There I was right after a film starring Ate Vi, asking a Vilmanian whether she liked the film she just saw. Just before we ended, she reminded me to cast my ballot and vote for the film as Audience Choice. I said I will. And I did. I may have turned into a Vilmanian without knowing it.” – Aaron, A Little Too Aaronic, 28 July 2013 (READ MORE)

Thinning Hair and Mrs. Coco Roco – “…Despite his thinning hair, Rafael Roco, Jr. instantly became the most sought-after leading man. He was paired with the leading actresses of the day in some of the best movies directed by the greatest Filipino film directors during this golden age of Philippine cinema. He shared stellar billing with Nora Aunor in Mario Ohara’s Tatlong Taong Walang Diyos; with Vilma Santos in Celso Ad Castillo’s Pagputi ng Uwak, Pag-itim ng Tagak; with Hilda Koronel in Behn Cervantes’ Sakada and Lino Brocka’s Hayop sa Hayop; with Chanda Romero in Eddie Romero’s Banta ng Kahapon and Gil Portes’ Sa Piling ng Mga Sugapa, with the latter giving him another best actor trophy from Gawad Urian, and many other memorable films. During the filming of Pagputi ng Uwak, Pag-itim ng Tagak, Rafael Roco, Jr. started wearing a wig due to his thinning hair…Rafael Roco, Jr. married a fashion model, Coco Artadi, who therefore became known from then on as Mrs. Coco Roco. Later, Rafael Roco, Jr. decided to finally get rid of his hairpiece. And he shaved his head permanently. He also replaced his screen name with his real nickname. Thus, Rafael Roco, Jr. became known as Bembol Roco. Although his decision to shave his head limited him to character roles, Bembol Roco remained as one of the country’s most brilliant actors, together with the original Julio Madiaga…” – Nick, Untold Pinoy Stories, 17 July 2007 (READ MORE)

Sirkian Framing in Films – “…Mario O’hara, a previous writer and actor of Brocka, also uses the sirkian framing like de Leon and Brocka. When he used to direct my scripts for Alindog, the window in the set, or a doorway, or even a lattice division between the kitchen and dining room – were all utilized beautifully to frame the characters. Even now, the Sirkian influence could still be seen in many Tagalog movies. The framing makes sense, it adds drama, makes the scene visually beautiful. But, I only wish that the younger filmmakers eradicate the lugubriousness of Sirk’s orchestration of melodrama to solicit emotional response from the audience. But, sad to say, the Philippine movie industry seemed to have got stuck and has been suffering from a fixation known as the “heavy drama obsession.” SINUNGALING MONG PUSO is just one example of Sirk’s influence. But what made this film even more horrific is that all the actors in this film, except Vilma Santos, were a hopeless case of “acting running amuck”. It was definitely patterned from Douglas Sirk’s smash hit films that many starred Rock Hudson: Magnificent Obsession (1954); All That Heaven Allows (1955); There’s Always Tomorrow (1956); Written on the Wind (1956); A Time to Love and A Time to Die (1958); Imitation of Life (1959); to name a few. Next time you watch a Tagalog movie, listen to a radio soap opera, watch a telenovela, read komiks – look for some Sirkian elements in them. Chances are they’re there, blatantly popping its lachrymose head, most especially if you made the mistake of blinking your tearful eyes.” – The Cool Canadian, 09 May 2008 (READ MORE)

Synonymous with Exaggeration – “…In Filipino movies, drama is synonymous with exaggeration. In many films, scenes of cruelty, violence and torrid sex are depicted with little restraint so that they border on distasteful. In Tagos ng Dugo (1987), a young girl is raped after her parents are mudered. While she’s being abused, blood from her murdered mother’s body drips through the ceiling and falls on her forehead. In Kapag Napagod and Puso (1988), a harassed movie director (Christopher de Leon) takes out his frustration on his young wife (Snooky Serna) by smashing her face, pounding her head on the wall and punching her pregnant body black and blue. Once it was sufficient to depict adult activities by implication. To speak of sex on screen, it was enough to show a couple closing a door as they entered a room. A passionate embrace or a kiss is always followed by a quick fade to black. But nowadays, with sexual liberation and the heightened sense of realism demanded by viewers, Filipino movies have become more graphic in their treatment of sexual matters. There is now a greater curiousity for the phenomenon of the woman’s body. It is a must to depict menstruation (Tagos ng Dugo), labor pains (Kapag Napagod ang Puso) and a miscarriage (Burlesque Queen, 1977) by showing blood stains on the garment near the area of the vagina and blood trickling down a woman’s leg. The first signs of pregnancy are always dramtized by showing a woman throwing up in asink (Pasan Ko ang Daigdig, 1987). Abortion scenes have a very clinical look: a woman must be shown lying down with her legs in stirrups as a doctor or quack performs the bloody operation. Since abortion is illegal in the Philippines, it is common to depict abortion scenes ending in tragedy. In Celso Ad. Castillo’s Nympha (1971), a woman is left to die naked, wallowing in her own blood on the floor after doctors fail to stop her bleeding following an abortion. Childbirth scenes are just as graphic. In Nunal sa Tubig (1977), a baby’s head is shown emerging from a vagina…” – Emmanuel Anastacio Reyes, Notes on Philippine Cinema (Collected Writings on Cinema)…” – Emmanuel Anastacio Reyes, Notes on Philippine Cinema Collected Writings on Cinema (READ MORE)

After Rubia and after a period of five years ngayon lang muling nagkasama sa pelikula sina Vilma at Lino Brocka. Although there was a time before that the director wanted the actress for one of his films (Kontrobersiyal), hindi nagkaroon ng katuparan iyon dahil sa very hectic na schedule ni Vilma noon at hindi na nakapaghintay si Lino. The role eventually went to Gina Alajar and the film became one of Lino’s most underrated movies. Sa Aida Macaraeg, muli na namang tatalakayin ang tungkol sa infidelities ng marriage na naging tatak na ng mga pelikula ni Vilma. Sa pagkakataong ito, hindi na siya ang “kabit” kundi siya na ang magkakaroon ng extra-marital relations o sa madaling sabi, siya na ang magkakaroon ng “kabit.” Nangyari na rin ito sa ilang pelikula ni Vilma kung saan ginampanan niya ang papel ng isang babaing may asawa at nagkakaroon siya ng lover tulad sa Hiwalay, Karma, at Minsan Pa Nating Hagkan Ang Nakaraan. Pero sa kakaiba ang mangyayari sa kanya sa Aida Macaraeg dahil dito ay madedemanda siya. How the actess will handle the role which in real life is the exact opposite of herself is something to watch especially now that husband Edu Manzano is back after almost a year of estrangement. For superstar and a highly successful actress who tries hard to hold on to her married life like their is no other, playing an adulterous wife is almost a life like departure for her. As she has always said time and again: “I’m trying my best to make marriage work. Kahit ano pa mang pambabatikos ang gawin nila hindi ko hahayaang masira ang aking married life nang ganoon na lang. Ang pinakamahalaga sa aking ngayon ay ang aking asawa’t anak. Sila ang dahilan kung bakit kinakaya ko ang lahat. Sabi nila, hindi raw puwedeng pagsabayin ang movei career at marriage. But I will try my best that what happened to most of my colleagues will not happen to me. Hindi ko mapapayagang mangyari iyan sa akin. I am willing to compromise for the sake of my marriage. I have always believed in my husband at kung kinakailangang isakripisyo ko ang aking movie career ay gagawin ko huwag lang masira ang aming magandang pagsasama. Hindi ko basta-basta isusuko na lang ang lahat. Mahal na mahal ko sila.” With that kind of belief and devotion, siguro wala nang makapipigil pa sa aktres na itaguyod ang kanyang sariling pamilya. Wala na. Not even her movie career. That a woman! This Trudis Liit now transformed into the “biggest” women in local film history namely Aida Macaraeg, Sister Stella L and Baby Tsina. With that kind of revolutionary women’s role in recent history, who needs a husband? Only Vilma Santos! – Julio Cinco N., Movie Flash Magazine, 05 January 1984 Posted at Pelikula Atbp (READ MORE)

MET Display – “Vilma In Person, first appeared on August 8, 1986. The pilot episode was shown from the Metropolitan Theater as a temporary studio where Vilma Santos and the VIP Dancers performed. Broadcast live from the Met every Friday until the 1990s, the popular musical variety show then moved to GMA Broadway Studios. While several top Filipino celebrities made their debut at the Met, its condition deteriorated in the ’90s due to several factors.” – Posted through Facebook

#AngelLocsin, #XianLim, #MgaTigreNgSieraCruz, #LuisManzano, #SisterStellaL, #Darna, #EkstraTheBitPlayer, #EAH, #EmmanuelAnastacioReyes, #NotesonPhilippineCinema, #TagosNgDugo, #MET

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Everything About The Film Reviews of #EAH

ARTICLES - EAH May 2016

Released Date – 27 January 2016, Philippines; 29 January 2016, North America; 6 February 2016, United Kingdom

Story Plot – “Powerful but ill-stricken business woman, Vilma Santos navigates her complicated relationship with her caregiver, Angel Locsin and her estranged son, Xian Lim in this story about acceptance, love and forgiveness.” – IMDb (READ MORE)

The Reviews

ARTICLES - Everything About Her film scenes 14Biggest revelation – “…The iconic actress (Vilma Santos) embraces her character’s flaws and fortitude with affecting clarity in a superlative portrayal that is passionate but never coercive. Her meticulous insistence on honesty guarantees that no tear is unearned—and no emotion manipulated…Angel also comes up with a focused performance that, for the most part, benefits from the film’s propulsive dramatic proceedings…Xian may not have Angel’s earnestness or Vilma’s finely calibrated bravado, but he is the movie’s biggest revelation. He figures in some of the film’s most gripping dramatic sequences—and delivers his moving moments with aplomb. It doesn’t hurt that Xian is cast in a role that fits him to a T: Albert is distant, guarded and spiteful, and is armed with an emotional axe to grind! Bernal makes clever use of those elements to thrust the heretofore phlegmatic performer outside his self-limiting comfort zone. Result: Xian’s finest portrayal to date!…” – Rito P. Asilo, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 30 January 2016 (READ MORE)

Everything is Genuine – “…Vilma Santos kept her promise and profile. She remains one of the most effective actress for all season. Her execution brought tears to every single scene. Bernal successfully defined her character at the beginning of the movie. They approach Vivian as a figure in a time-honored character template in which a convenient plot mechanism allows the bitch to revisit sad chapters in her life so that we can understand that it was quite a life, indeed. But she failed to understand motherhood that her son suffered from missed opportunities being with her because of her profession. It is a fundamental truth that the responsibilities of motherhood cannot be successfully delegated. No, not to day-care centers, not to schools, not to nurseries, not to babysitters…I didn’t expect much from Xian Lim’s character but he is a revelation in this movie. His approach to drama is a serious attempt to keep his career on top. There should be more of him in this genre. Though I wish there’s too much to say from where he is coming from. His physique improved though I noticed. I have seen and admired Angel Locsin from her last movie with Olivia Lamasan opposite Aga Muhlach and it sets a high standard from then on. Her role as a patient nurse is one relate-able middle class professional that worked along the way. Angel Locsin gave an enormous justification in her character searching for answers about her mother…9/10.” – Rod Magaru, Rod Magaru Show, 28 January 2016 (READ MORE)

Humanizing Stereotype – “…Given that she plays a character that teeters towards caricature, Santos is tasked to humanize Vivian, which she does with astounding ease. She manifests a quiet understanding of the character, depicting the role of an uncomplicated woman without the histrionics that one often sees from comediennes who are required to portray dramatic roles and the discomfort that one often observes from serious thespians who are forced to be uncharacteristically comical…It is a film that does not necessarily earn its fairy tale conclusion, but its efforts in allowing its audience to bask in feel-good escapism is not completely wrong. In the end, it deserves its rainbow, even though the rains that precede it is blanketed in all the conveniences formula affords…” – Francis Joseph “Oggs” Cruz, Rappler, 29 January 2016 (READ MORE)

ARTICLES - Everything About Her film scenes 11Somewhat Refreshing – “…The film is driven by irony: Vivian (Santos) later finds out she’s afflicted with cancer. Instead of wallowing about it, she accepts it like no other’s business, hires a private nurse, and maniacally, laughs it off—all with enviable and self-confidence and awareness. She’s a strong woman, after all. She’s going to win. Where she drains her strength is on her estranged son, Albert (Xian Lim) who, after many years flies home for a high-tier real estate project for her company. Unbeknownst to her, her private nurse Jaica (Angel Locsin) has made Albert aware of the situation. There it is, a chance for her to rekindle an interrupted relationship with her son, never mind the irony of the timing…This thick, disquieting anxiety carries through a scene in Everything About Her, where Vivian mutters, almost weak-sounding: “Baka nga kailangan ko ng deadline,” she confesses. “Sana lang wag masyadong mabilis.” It’s a great scene, one that requires an actor of Santos’ pedigree to pull off. You take everything Santos says and you’re always sold on her sincerity. A few sequences earlier she speaks of spilling someone’s guts and ripping insides out, and you believe her just the same…The dynamic between Vivian and Jaica is extremely watchable, owing mostly to both Santos and Locsin’s commendable performances. There’s an underplayed gag toward the end where Jaica persuades Albert to stay for his mother, mentioning something about Darna. “Ikaw si Ding,” she exclaims. “Siya si Darna, at ikaw ang bato.” It’s somewhat refreshing to see this in Everything About Her, however random. Punchlines are echoed as poignant monologues, such as in the funny bit where Jaica missends a text message to Vivian, essentially calling her an “impakta”. It’s flourishes like this that pepper the middlebrow story that it has…” – Armando Dela Cruz, Film Police, 02 February 2016 (READ MORE)

An Inspiring and Heartfelt Message – “…Vilma Santos is a master in her craft — there has never been a question about this. My favorite scenes in the movie were actually the quieter moments when she longingly looked at her son as he slept, her unsolicited hug for Angel’s character to thank her for her compassion, but the best scene, perhaps not just for Vivian, but for all three lead characters — was the bathroom scene when she finds out that her son knows about her disease despite her wishes…All in all, I loved the movie because it carried an inspiring message about families and balancing work life with one’s personal life. Its a story about forgiveness and love and the way it was laid out was just brilliant. Just, the feels. It was a perfect combination of a great story, a heartfelt message, great acting and an execution that was on point throughout the entire film…” – Its Wynne’s World, 02 Feb 2016 (READ MORE)

Remarkable and Substantial – “…Santos and Locsin meets halfway at the same level of caliber that is equally remarkable and substantial. The film’s touching moments make it difficult to forget their chemistry, much more to realize that they are all out with their performances…In spite of the predictability of the story right from the very beginning, the entire ride is memorable, granted how the story is weaved without compromise—without fear that the audience would not stay put. As it wants to stir up sadness towards its ends, it controls itself by giving into the tested formula of the outlet. True enough, it works fine on that note. There is a stinging sensation at the end of the line but happy thoughts prevail and make use of its impact. Before the last frame, Vivian cries, “But in the end, even if we die alone, we need other people.” As we hold onto her last words, there is really much to relate to in her story as there is much to believe in ourselves. Familial attachment is everything about her. And we are more than familiar with that…” – J Bestillore, Cinema Bravo, 27 January 2016 (READ MORE)

ARTICLES - Everything About Her film scenes 10Credit to Make-up Artists – “…That is where I found out from E.R. Tagle that the movie “Everything About Her” was showing at a nearby cinema house. He was all praises for it, so I told him that any movie starring Ms Vilma Santos was worth watching. I am happy to catch a few on TV. The following day, I had to drag myself out of bed, fearlessly cross our busy street, risking life and limb to see the movie. It wasn’t the last full show; it was only 12:15 noontime, and the movie was just starting. But already we had to rise for the Philippine National Anthem. I told our “street facilitators” from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (“The joy of being useful,” Opinion, 1/29/16) that anyone who can sing our national anthem and not choke up with emotions rising from their breasts and leaving a lump in their throats do not love their country enough. They agreed with me, but I have my doubts about the last sentence—about dying for my country. Well, if push comes to shove, maybe. As expected, the movie was excellent despite a few things, but the main thing was I enjoyed the movie, was fully entertained even if more than half of it had tears rolling down my cheeks and, to top it all, I didn’t have any tissues with me. I must say, the cinematography was something to rave about; the acting was superb, the leading man was handsome as he should be, and the two leading ladies’ acting skills were flawless. Some credit must go to the makeup artist whose skilled hands transformed Ms Vilma’s character into a tough and uncompromising business person. I regretted it had to end, and I stayed for the credits to find out who performed the theme song and to give a chance for the crowd in the ladies’ room to clear…” – Shirley Wilson de las Alas, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 16 February 2016 (READ MORE)

Affectionate Charm – “…Whereas the film’s proceedings come across as yet another orchestration of a familiar film cliché, it strikes a chord by remaining adherent to a formula, that maybe too predictable at times, but nonetheless works because of its relatability. There is an affectionate charm in its humor and subtle comic attempts, and it massively works when injected on the film’s emotional moments. It is barely a surprise how Santos pulled off Vivian with undeniable credibility here. She delivers her character and its layers with profound depth, believability, and artistry that probaly only someone with her caliber, could do. On her character’s most heartbreaking moments, Santos delivers exactly what a woman faced with the wrath of death, while also struggling to reach out for a son she might probably don’t have enough time to spend together with, would feel and look like, an act she easily carried out with searing capacity. Locsin, on the other hand, has an equally impressive maneuver of Jaica, who on most occasions, is presented as the film’s comic effort, acting as one of the narrative’s heart and its very symbol of hope. The character is commendably pulled by Locsin with irresistible charm and affection, a capacity she maintains even on the character’s very own moments of breakdown. But the biggest commendation, perhaps, should go for Lim, who emerges here, with an unfamiliar but convincing versatility. This is probably the actor’s strongest performance yet, having gotten across with the necessary power required by his character, whose wounds and struggles are equally as deep and excruciating as his mother’s…Rating: 3.5 out of 4…” – LionhearTV, 27 January 2016 (READ MORE)

Generous to Co-stars – “…Vilma Santos diehards will not be disappointed as Ate Vi handles her role with much understanding. At first, the character is almost caricaturish, with people she interviews shown breaking down or throwing up after talking to her. But Ate Vi knows how to humanize her Vivian with little knowing nuances here and there. Even in her heaviest dramatic scenes, she shows an intrinsic understanding of Vivian by not resorting to histrionics. Hindi na niya dinadrama pa ang mga dramang eksena, even in that scene where Angel is expecting to be fired and she just says quietly: ‘Kunin mo ang putanginang gamot ko.’ And she is so generous to her co-stars in their scenes together, allowing them to shine on their own, especially to Xian Lim in that hospital scene where he delivers a long aria of how much he hates his mother. Honestly, we were feeling uncomfortable for Xian on how he’d handle that scene of a son haunted by an unhappy childhood, but in all fairness to him, he manages to acquit himself quite well. Since this is a production of Star Cinema, you can expect a feel good happy ending. There is the obligatory fairy tale romance between the caregiver and her boss’ son. In photos, they’re even shown being wed and having a baby. Needless, as far as we’re concerned but, hey, the movie has to be very family friendly. So give escapism a chance. We’re sure Director Joyce Bernal was told to treat it all with levity. And that’s exactly what she did. If you want a more serious film about a dying woman, watch Ate Vi’s similarly themed classic film directed by the other Bernal…” – Mario Escobar Bautista, Journal, 12 February 2016 (READ MORE)

ARTICLES - Everything About Her film scenes 3Larger-Than-Life Portrayals – “…Vilma Santos’ latest starrer, “Everything About Her,” is a worthy addition to her pantheon of exceptional screen portrayals. Right from the get-go, she affirms her versatility by playing a “new” character for her, a powerful and abrasive property magnate who reduces her victims to quivering masses of protoplasm….the production’s thespic crown firmly rests on Vilma’s head, due to her daringly strong character choice and ability to come up with a suitable larger-than-life portrayal, despite her slight and light physical frame. Even more compellingly, Vilma is able to dig really deep and summon up the especially strong emotions needed to make her inordinately powerful character believable—while still being able to shift naturally and depict her at her most vulnerable. Finally, “Everything About Her” is a revelatory change of pace and tone for its director, Joyce Bernal, who’s usually identified with more light-hearted and “cheeky” film fare. Her adeptness at humor leavens this film’s tragic scenes, while not diluting them—a tough directorial feat to pull off! It’s a testament to Bernal’s maturing skills that she’s able to do it—and, in the process, show us a bracingly new facet and prism to her directorial scope and oeuvre…” – Nestor U. Torre, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 13 February 2016 (READ MORE)

Pinakamahusay na Aktres ng Bansa sa Kasalukuyang Panahon – “…Mahusay si Vilma Santos sa kanyang papel bilang pangunahing tauhan ng pelikula. Sino pa bang kukuwestiyon sa kanyang husay bilang aktres? Wala na. Maituturing mo siya talagang pinakamahusay na aktres ng bansa lalo na sa kasalukuyang panahon. Every inch, every scene napakahusay. Dahil sa husay ng kanyang performance, mahirap malimutan ang pelikula at maaaring siya na uli ang best actress ng 2016. Makatuturan ang pagbabalik ni Vilma sa napakatalino niyang desisyong piling-pili ang uri ng ginagawa niyang pelikula. Mas effective sa akin si Xian Lim. Mahusay! Nauunawaan niya ang role niya. Sumabay talaga siya kay Vilma Santos na generously ay sinuportahan siya. Sa lahat ng eksena nila, nilalamon ni xian si Angel ng buung-buo. Napakasinsero umarte dito ni Xian na kita mong bawat bitiw niya ng emosyon ay galing sa puso…Sa kabuuan, typical Star Cinema pa rin ang pelikula. Maganda na sana pero dahil kailangang bigyan ng resolusyon lahat sa ending, pilit na pilit; very unrealistic; pumangit lang tuloy ang dulo. Ganda na sanang sa party na nag-end ang movie habang nagsasalita si Vivian (Vilma) at may hope na tatagal pa ang buhay niya. Bakit kailangan pang ipakita thru collage photos na kinasal at naging mag-asawa sina angel at xian?! Yuck! Ok na sana kahit wala silang romantic angle tatayo ang pelikula. To beginwith, mukhang tiyahing tibo ni Xian si Angel. Pero dahil Star Cinema nga ito, kailangang babuyin ng ganun ang ending ng pelikula na sinasabi nilang pang masa, na sa tutuo lang, iniinsulto nila di lang ang masa kundi ang mga manonood na nasa matinong pag-iisip…” – Ronaldo C. Carballo, Facebook, 08 February 2016 (READ MORE)

Symbolism of the Chandelier – “…The cinematic devices and motifs the film employs to drive its narrative have given it much advantage. Particularly noteworthy is the symbolism of the chandelier that Vilma is shown to gaze at in one of the many heartfelt moments of quiet drama the film boasts of. The convulsion scene is carried out in a single take that only an actress of Vilma’s caliber could ever pull off with much aplomb. Vilma proves her comic mettle and efficacy in at least two scenes. One is the long shot of an open field with her voice heard clarifying with her staff the exact number of executive people she is about to have an exclusive meeting with. Another is the one upstairs at her residence as she confronts Angel’s character with the latter’s wrongly sent phone text referring to Vilma’s character as a creature from hell and a whore…” – Nonoy L. Lauzon, Young Critics Circle Film Desk, 08 February 2016 (READ MORE)

Mozart’s Symphony No. 25 – “…Indeed, the performances of both lead actors and supporting cast were so compelling you felt almost everyone in the cast deserved an acting award. The surprise actor in the cast was Xian Lim who delivered not just a focused performance but a highly stirring one. His hospital scene with Vilma Santos was a stand-out one could hear people quietly sobbing behind me. Angel Locsin has no match as a supporting actress, the part of Nonie Buencamino (as the padre de familia) has all the hallmark of a good actor and the part of Shamaine Centenera Buencamino and Vangie Labalan (no matter how brief) registered with layers of pathos. Most of all, this could be Vilma Santos’ best performance todate. The transition of her character from corporate mogul to repentant mother revealed the true artist in her. The musical scoring blended with the story but my favorite part is the household scenes with the character of Vilma Santos noting the significance of the chandelier in the living room with a movement from Mozart’s Symphony No. 25 in the background. The grandness of the music matched the leading character’s grand ambition. It is also gratifying to find classical music find its way in a family drama…” – Pablo A. Tariman, Arts News Service, 06 February 2016 (READ MORE)

ARTICLES - Everything About Her film scenes 5Iconic Maternal Roles – “…Everything About Her has good and bad parts. This can probably be said about most Star Cinema movies — as the fulfillment of formula has made these qualities distinguishable, knowing where it goes well and where it nose-dives — but with Vilma Santos and Joyce Bernal, the desire to endorse it, and make a good case for it despite its inevitable shortcomings, is strong. It is convincing at first, from the start when the characters and conflicts are established and all the way through the piling up of challenges for both female characters. But in an effort to close it with something remarkable and leave the audience with warmth, it decides to be generic and resort to platitudes that dilute the inspired moments, in turn weakening what could have been a moving depiction of female (and maternal) strength. Ate Vi gets away with the many times she repeats herself (her approach and sentiment) from her previous movies, and this showcase of recognizable maternal roles makes her iconic in this regard. But Everything About Her does not find its soul in her but in Angel Locsin, delivering what could be one of the best Star Cinema characters in years…” – Richard Bolisay, Lilok Pelikula, 08 February 2016 (READ MORE)

Uber-Bitch – “…Vilma Santos has fun with her role, and she looks terrific. We do take issue with the scenes in which her character telegraphs to the audience that she’s not as bitchy as they think she is. As one who is extremely familiar with the species, a bitch does not care whether you like her or not. In fact an uber-bitch would prefer to be loathed so that she doesn’t waste time pandering to the tender feelings of people she doesn’t give a shit about. You know what words a bitch finds irritating? “You’re nice naman pala.” “Hugot” lines do nothing for us, but there is one line in the movie we especially like. In one scene, Vivian gets nauseous and starts to throw up on her bed. Jaica grabs Vivian’s designer bag and dives across the bed to catch it. “Kunin mo na rin yung Balenciaga bag ko,” Vivian says, deadpan, “Doon ko gustong sumuka uli.” Bitch, that’s a bitch…” – Jessica Zafra, Interaksyon, 05 February 2016 (READ MORE)

The Heart of the Story – “…Speaking of Albert, Xian Lim’s character was the central source of drama in the movie. The scenes of Vivian and Jaica were mostly comedic and amusing, but it was the introduction of Albert that brought more heart to the plot. Albert’s character is what drives the conflict – with Vivian struggling to re-establish ties with her son, and how Jaica’s job seemed to get more complicated with her feelings for Albert. Xian was definitely revelatory in this film, and my initial doubts of having him as the leading man faded with my impression that he’s only good for rom-coms. Surprisingly, he had great chemistry with Vilma Santos an Angel Locsin, and he was able to add more dimension to his otherwise uptight character by being emotional when needed. This and the fact that he had similarities with the features of Vilma Santos made it hard for me to think of anybody else more perfect for the role…Vilma Santos still has her charm and her performance was nothing short of remarkable. She was able to fuse the two sides of Vivian seamlessly together – one was this terror business magnate who’d go out of her way and ride a chopper to Tagaytay just so she could fire someone personally, and the other was this loving mother who longs for the forgiveness and embrace of her son. The role allowed her to once again showcase her versatility as an actress, and the heart and dedication that she gives out to every scene transcends effortlessly to the audience…Angel’s role was what brought comic relief and lightness to the story. She no doubt demonstrated her flexibility as an actress in the film however, there were several unnecessary comical moments from her character…” – Geoffrey Ledesma, GeoffReview, 03 February 2016 (READ MORE)

Warm and Soothing – “…This movie is about understanding and forgiveness. Not just between people and their expectations of life but of oneself with life itself. Overall it’s a good movie which explores mainly parent-children relationships but also gives a clear view on how unpredictable cancer (or any kind of life- threatening health issue) may be. Finally, this will not be a silly comedy but it’s not the overly soul breaking drama movie you may have expected either. I found it rather soothing and earth grounded yet at the same time refreshing. It’s rare to find a movie which can deal with life and The ending without being overbearing gives away a bittersweet sensation from which you experience but a taste. As for the aftertaste, it’s like buying a dark chocolate. You what you will get but nothing prepares you for the surprising filling which levels everything in the end…” – KloKlo, IMDb, 20 March 2016 (READ MORE)

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