Body Talk with Vilma Santos

If you want to spoil Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos’ day, enumerate to her the symptoms of an illness, any illness, and she’ll feel sick the whole day. Yes, she’s hypochondriac. Once, Perla Bautista (another hypochondriac) related to Vilma how her (Perla’s) friend suffered from an ailment and guess what Vilma did the next day – yes, she called in sick.

But discuss showbiz and politics with her and she perks up. Graduating from being Lipa City with a sterling record as the province’s governor, Vilma is now rumored to be the probable running mate of MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando in the 2010 presidential race. Asked if she discussed that “possibility” when Fernando recently paid her a visit at the Batangas provincial capitol, Vilma insisted that he did not. “He just met with the department heads,” she said, adding, “but we didn’t talk about 2010. Hindi sa ayaw kong magsilbi sa iba but I know when I’m prepared.”

What she’s prepared for is her yet untitled movie (to be directed by Olivia Lamasan) for Star Cinema with John Lloyd Cruz for which they’re going to New York in November to start shooting (to catch the first snowfall). John Lloyd plays the lover of Vilma’s son (her own son, Luis/Lucky Manzano, is being eyed for the role but he might not be “ready” for love/kissing scenes with another guy). “My son in the movie will die at kami ni John Lloyd ang mag-i-enkuwentro,” she said. Gov. Vilma stands five-foot-flat, weighs 105 lbs., and wears medium/large shirts and size-6 shoes (her feet grew bigger after she gave birth to Ryan Christian).

You used to be insomniac, weren’t you?
“Yes. It was terrible! Hindi ako inaantok hangga’t hindi ako makakita ng araw, kahit konting liwanag lang. But while it was dark, I was awake.”

How long did you suffer from insomnia?
“It lasted while I was busy doing movies. Nag-iba lang ang body clock ko when I became a mayor. But before that, bago nabago ang sistema ng katawan ko, I was hospitalized for three weeks. My doctor said that my body had to adjust to my new schedule.”

So you sleep well now?
“When I go home from work, as early as 11:30 p.m., I go to bed na and then I wake up at 5 a.m. Six hours of sleep are good enough for me. More than that, I feel sluggish, para akong nilalagnat.”

What’s your favorite sleep wear?
“Loose shorts with a pajama top. The aircon has to be turned on full blast because I want to wrap myself in a thick blanket.”

What about Ralph?
“Naku, mahilig din sa very cold temperature, pati anak namin (Ryan Christian).”

Do you snore?
“According to Ralph, yes. When I’m tired daw, heavy ang breathing ko, may sound.”

Do you talk in your sleep?
“I don’t think so. I hope not! But when I’m too tired, kapag kinakausap daw ako habang natutulog, sagot ako nang sagot. They would ask me daw about my schedule the next day at tama naman daw ang sagot ko.”

Do you sleepwalk?
“No, I don’t.”

How many pillows do you sleep with?
“I’m fine with two pillows. Ganoon din si Luis (Lucky). One under my head and the other I hug.”

What about Ralph? Don’t you hug him?
“Ay, mahilig sa maraming unan, like Ryan. Unan ang yakap-yakap ni Ralph when he sleeps.”

Which side of the bed do you sleep on?
“Left side. I’m comfortable sa left side. Nasa right side si Ralph.”

Do you and Ralph talk about politics in bed?
“Yes. At least we can discuss a topic close to our hearts.”

Do you bring work to the bedroom?
“As much as possible, I don’t. I see to it that I finish the paper work in my office even if it means staying up late, so that when I go home all I have to do is read and relax with my family.”

What’s the last thing that you do before you go to sleep?
“I drink a glass of water and then I pray. But for me to fall asleep easily, kailangan i-massage ang paa ko, gentle lang. Basta gusto ko lang kina-caress ang mga paa ko.”

Who does the massaging, Ralph?
“No. ‘Yung maid namin.”

First thing that you do when you wake up?
“I make the Sign of the Cross and then derecho ligo if it’s a working day. Kapag rest day, I take my time and read the newspapers and then I exercise.”

What kind of exercise do you do?
“I do taebo, I do the treadmill, and I dance. I do it at least one hour every day. I do it in a room with the aircon turned off para pawisan ako. And then nagsa-sauna ako.”

Aside from exercising, how else do you unwind?
“I just stay home, make kuwento with my children and watch TV, and eat the food that I like. That is, after exercising. Aside from the gentle massage every night, I have hard massage twice a week.”

What part of your body is most vulnerable?
“My stomach. Sakit ‘yan ng mga Scorpio. When I’m tense, sumasakit kaagad ang sikmura ko.”

How’s your sex life?
“Ay, highly-satisfactory. Hahahaha! Mas magana kami ni Ralph when we are abroad. No pressure. We take our time. Heaven!”

You used to be a hypochondriac, right?
“Up to now! Matapang ako, pero pagdating sa sakit duwag ako. That’s why I don’t want to go to hospitals because the moment nalaman ko ‘yung symptoms, parang nararamdaman kong mayroon ako.”

How often do you see your doctor?
“Ay, very rarely. The last check-up I had was two years ago. But I advise women to undergo a mammogram once a year. Ang daming may breast cancer ngayon, di ba?”

How’s your diet?
“I eat five to six small meals every day, but never busog na busog. I eat anything in moderation. I eat mostly fish and vegetables. But my favorite is Japanese food. My favorite fruit is banana, the latondan variety.”

Are you really a milk drinker?
“Oh yes, ever since I was young. Ask my mom. Palagi kong baon ay pandesal with cheese and milk or Choco Vim. I’ve been drinking Bear Brand from way, way back.”

How much water do you take per day?
“I should take eight glasses of water per day but the most I take is six glasses. But I also take lots of green tea. After eating, I take a glass of hot water or hot tea for digestion.”

How do you take care of your skin? (She used to endorse Eskinol.)
“Wala akong masyadong beauty regimen. All I do is take off my make-up with cream. Before I sleep, I wash my face with warm water. And before I put on my make-up, I wash my face with cold water. Unless I appear on TV, hindi ako naglalagay ng makapal na make-up. Exercise helps. You sweat a lot and it’s good for the skin.”

Name three women you think have nice, healthy bodies.
“Dawn Zulueta. Charlene Gonzalez. Lorna Tolentino. Mga mothers na pero marunong mag-alaga ng katawan.”

And three men…
“Piolo Pascual. Ralph is fatherly sexy. And, of course, ang anak ko, si Luis.” – Ricardo F. Lo, The Philippine Star, Aug 29 2008 (READ MORE)

Gov. Vilma Santos-Recto to receive Ulirang Artista award from PMPC

Ang Star for All Seasons at Batangas Governor na si Ms. Vilma Santos ang unanimous choice ng members and officers ng Philippine Movie Press Club (PMPC), Inc. ngayong taon, bilang recipient ng isang natatanging gawad—pagkilala sa isang tunay na alagad ng sining—ang Ulirang Artista Lifetime Achievement Award. Every year ay ibinibigay ito ng nasabing entertainment writers’ club sa kanilang PMPC Star Awards for Movies presentation, sa nararapat tawaging “Ulirang Artista” ng Philippine show business.

Kabilang sa criteria ng Club para sa karangalang ito ay ang kanyang “outstanding body of work in film, remarkable achievements in Philippine Cinema, unquestionable credibility, impeccable reputation in the movie industry, integrity, and if she has touched the lives of the Filipino people from her humble beginnings up to her present status.” Masasabing espesyal ang pagpaparangal na ito sa multi-awarded actress na si Vilma Santos, dahil nagkataong Silver Anniversary (25 years) ngayon ng PMPC.

Just last week sa general meeting ng PMPC, may iba pang mga na-consider na mga batikan at beteranong aktor at aktres para sa Ulirang Artista Lifetime Achievement Award. At tulad ng laging nangyayari taun-taon, may demokratikong delibration among the PMPC officers and members, kung sino ang gusto nilang i-nominate. Ang pangalan na nga ni Ate Vi ang lumabas na halos unanimous choice.

Ang kauna-unahang recipient ng Ulirang Artista Lifetime Achievement Award ay si Ms. Anita Linda noong 1987. Wala pang ganitong category mula 1984, ang birth year ng PMPC Star Awards for Movies, hanggang 1986. Ang iba pang past Ulirang Artista honorees ay sina: Dolphy, Eddie Garcia, Joseph Estrada, Susan Roces, Ramon Revilla Sr., Armando Goyena, Boots Anson-Roa, Perla Bautista, Eddie Rodriguez, Charito Solis, Armida Siguion-Reyna, Gloria Romero, German Moreno, Chichay, Gil de Leon, Leopoldo Salcedo, Alicia Vergel, Mona Lisa, at Rosa Rosal.

Last year, ipinagkaloob ang parangal na ito (posthumous) sa namayapang actor-producer na si Rudy Fernandez. Tinanggap ito ng kanyang kapatid sa awards night sa Ateneo University Theater noong June 27, at nagkaroon ng delayed telecast sa ABS-CBN noong June 30. Last March 10 nang gabi, pagkatapos ng taping ni Governor Vi ng Deal or No Deal (last episode) sa ABS-CBN studio, personal na inabot ng ilang PMPC officers (headed by president Roldan Castro) ang formal letter informing her of the recognition.

“Wow, nakakatuwa naman ang balitang ‘yan,” masayang bungad ni Vilma, habang binabasa ang formal letter. “Pagkagaling namin sa U.S., sige, magsu-shoot na kasi kami… Kelan ba ito? ‘Wag lang Linggo please dahil di ako puwedeng ma-late sa flag ceremony sa amin (Batangas) ng Monday morning,” dagdag niya, na inoohan naman agad ng PMPC representatives at aayusin ng mga ito ang schedule, ayon sa availability ng mahusay na aktres. Tuwang-tuwa si Governor Vi sa nasabing mataas na karangalan, nag-congratulate pa siya sa grupo for its 25th year, at masayang kinumpirmang darating sa Gabi ng Parangal upang personal na tanggapin ang kanyang trophy.

“Congrats sa inyo dahil Silver na pala kayo… Yung Oscars, nakakatuwa nung napanood ko, talagang sa pagbanggit ng nominees sa major categories, in-invite nila ang past winners, di ba? Ang ganda! Talagang mararamdaman mo yung respeto sa kapwa artista nila,” comment pa ni Vilma, na tila nais nitong ipahayag na sana’y gano’n din ang respetong igawad sa mga tunay na artista sa Pilipinas, sa mga okasyong tulad nito. Sa personal na pagtanggap na yun ni Governor Vi, nagsipalakpakan pa nga ang PMPC representatives sa tuwa. Nang iparating ng PMPC sa production team headed by Director Al Quinn ang mainit na pagtanggap ni Gov. Vi sa parangal ay natuwa silang lahat.

Si Vilma Santos ay isa nang haligi ng movie industry at hindi matatawaran ang nagawa niyang mga kontribusyon sa daigdig ng pelikula. Isa siyang multi-awarded, highly-respected actress (with her string of award-winning performances and box office achievements) na pinasok din ang daigdig ng pulitika. Mula sa pagiging mayor ng Batangas ay matagumpay rin itong ibinoto ng mga Batangeño bilang kanilang Governor.

Hindi na mabilang ang mga tinaggap niyang Best Actress awards through the years. Ika nga, name it, Ate Vi has won it. Naikot na niya sa matagumpay niyang showbiz career ang halos lahat ng major award giving bodies—Gawad Urian, FAP (na ngayo’y Luna Awards), FAMAS (Hall of Famer siya as Best Actress), MMFFP, at Young Critics Circle.

For the record, sa history or honor roll ng PMPC Star Awards for Movies, si Governor Vi ang nagkamit ng pinakamaraming tropeo bilang Movie Actress of the Year (Best Actress)—a total of six (6) PMPC trophies to be exact—at isang Dekada Award as Best Actress noong nagpalit ang dekada, na iginawad din noon kina Nora Aunor at Sharon Cuneta. Ang anim na Star Awards for Movies (Best Actress) trophies na nakopo ng Star for All Seasons ay para sa Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal na Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Bata, Bata, Paano Ka Ginawa (1998); Dekada ’70 (2002), at ang pinakahuli ay para sa Mano Po 3: My Love (2004).

Ngayong April 11 ay nakatakdang umalis si Vilma kasama ang grupo ng Star Cinema patungong U.S. upang mag-shoot ng comeback film niya (after five years), tentatively titled A Mother’s Story, directed by Olivia Lamasan. Kasama ni Vilma sa cast ang anak na si Luis Manzano at ang kasalukuyang Box-Office King John Lloyd Cruz. “One week lang muna kami sa Los Angeles para magbakasyon muna with my family. Then, April 19, punta na kami ng New York, pahinga ng 20th, at start ng shooting sa 21st. Mga three weeks kami doon,” masayang pagbabalita ni Vilma.

“So, in time pag-uwi ko sa May, makaka-attend ako… Wow, wala talaga akong masabi… Thank you, thank you talaga sa inyo!” masayang-masayang sabi ni Governor Vi. Ngayon pa lang ay inihahanda na ng produksiyon ang “special tribute” for the one and only Ms. Vilma Santos bilang Ulirang Artista Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, very fitting para sa Silver Anniversary presentation ng PMPC Star Awards for Movies sa buwan ng Mayo.

As of press time, inaaayos pa kung sino-sino ang magiging hosts ng Gabi ng Parangal, pati na ang performers. Inaasahang magiging makulay at maningning na naman ang okasyong ito, na magkakaroon rin ng delayed telecast sa telebisyon. Lalo itong magnininging sa pagdalo ni Governor Vilma Santos-Recto. – Mell T. Navarro, PEP, March 13, 2009 (READ MORE)

Emmanuel H. Borlaza’s Vilma Santos Films (Videos) 2/2

204 films, 70 directors, 5 decades, Vilma Santos, one of the original Philippine movie queens, rose up to become the versatile actress that has been given the fitting title of “Star for All Seasons” because of her capacity to adapt to the changing mores and values of the Filipino woman, giving a face to their plight and struggles, albeit in success both critically and box-office wise in some of Philippine cinema’s classics such as Trudis Liit (1963), Lipad, Darna, Lipad (1973), Burlesk Queen (1977), Relasyon (1982), Sister Stella L. (1984), Alyas Baby Tsina (1984), Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Anak (2000) and Dekada ’70 (2002). This are top ten directors who contributed to her success. – RV (READ MORE)

His films lack the arthouse style and social relevance that critics loves most in a Brocka or Bernal films but who cares about the critics when the paying public loves them. And the producers demand his service, from Doc Perez of Sampaguita Pictures, Atty. Esperidion Laxa of Tagalog Ilang Ilang Productions and later on, Vic Del Rosario of Viva Films and Lily Monteverde of Regal Films. Clearly, his films exists with one purpose, to entertain the masses not to depress or remind them with the country’s sad fate of economy or the below poverty line lives of many. The success of the Vilma-Borlaza films gave Vilma Santos versatility and preparation to a more serious acting career. It also narrowed the popularity gap between her and the musical era’s darling of the 70s, Nora Aunor. These are perhaps, the most significant contributions of Emmanuel Borlaza to Vilma’s career. Vilma who was considered only second to Nora couldn’t matched her singing talent and so, Borlaza countered this lack of singing with films that showcased Vilma’s acting versatility.

From the folklore mermaid in Dyesebel at ang Mahiwagang Kabibe to fighting giants in Darna and the Giants to a fast-talker-gossip-mongering vendor in Tsismosang Tindera and to good-hearted prostitutes in Mga Rosas sa Putikan, Borlaza let Vilma Santos experience a wide range of roles, from comedic fantasy to dramatic adult roles. These experiments prepared her to a later more serious and versatile acting career. Their success made other directors interested in giving her roles oftenly considered for her closest rivals. Projects lined up and awaits her availability. Borlaza and Santos’ collaboration produced a string of box office hits from early 70s’ Dama De Noche to their last outing in late 80s’ Ibigay Mo Sa Akin Ang Bukas. Their success established their career as one of the most bankable and in-demand director/actor team, making her the longest reighning box office queen of all time and him a money maker director.

When time for Vilma to moved on with other collaborators, Borlaza handled other stars with much success! He directed Alma Moreno in smash hit, Eva Fonda 16; Sharon Cuneta in her memorable rag to riches films, Bituin Walang Ningning and Bukas Luluhod Ang Mga Tala; Snooky Serna in her fantasy hit, Blusang Itim and Marecel Soriano as the spoiled brat in Yesterday Today and Tomorrow. These films gave us some of the most memorable movie lines that most Filipinos would still remember like Cherie Gil’s campy dialouge: “You’re Nothing but second rate Trying hard, Copy Cat!” or Sharon’s promise of revenge: “pinapangako ko inay…bukas luluhod ang mga tala! (I’ll promise you mother, tommorow the stars will kneel down, something to that effect, litterally.)” – RV (READ MORE)

Emmanuel H. Borlaza aka Maning Borlaza is a 1957 Palanca Awardee for “May Pangako ang Bukas” and theaterical drama trained by National Artist Severino Montano. Appointed by Pres. Noy Aquino as Movie and Television Review and Classifications Board (MTRCB) Vice Chairman this year, Borlaza directed 24 films with Vilma Santos and was credited with her transformation to a reluctant singing competitor of Nora Aunor to bankable superstar with such hits like Dyesebel, Lipad Darna Lipad, Darna and the Giants. – IMDB (READ MORE)

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Film director Emmanuel Borlaza appointed as vice-chairman of the MTRCB
Top 10 Film Directors (Video)

Lino Brocka’s Vilma Santos Films

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204 films, 70 directors, 5 decades, Vilma Santos, one of the original Philippine movie queens, rose up to become the versatile actress that has been given the fitting title of “Star for All Seasons” because of her capacity to adapt to the changing mores and values of the Filipino woman, giving a face to their plight and struggles, albeit in success both critically and box-office wise in some of Philippine cinema’s classics such as Trudis Liit (1963), Lipad, Darna, Lipad (1973), Burlesk Queen (1977), Relasyon (1982), Sister Stella L. (1984), Alyas Baby Tsina (1984), Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Anak (2000) and Dekada ’70 (2002). This are top ten directors who contributed to her success. – RV (READ MORE)

Brocka gave Vilma one of the most controversial film after “Burlesk Queen,” her milestone role as a rape victim in 1978′s “Rubia Servios.” The film failed to secure Vilma the local festival’s best performer award after so much speculations despite this, the film was a big hit. Brocka will direct Vi two more times, “Adultery” in 1984 and “Hahamakin Kita” in 1990, a year before his untimely death in May 21, 1991. – RV (READ MORE)

Rubia Servios (1978) – “…Rubia Servios, on the other hand, does not dilute the message. Willy (Phillip Salvador), the son of a powerful and wealthy figure, is portrayed as totally evil, devoid of any redeeming quality. To screenwriter Mario O’Hara and director Lino Brocka, the province is the same as the city. Rubia Servios (Vilma Santos) is raped both in the city and in the country. Rubia kills Willy in the country. Violence unites all places. It is the “unity” of conception, scripting, design, and direction, in fact, that Rubia Servios is superior to Atsay. Lino Brocka does not waste shots in his attempt to create a Filipino classical tragedy. He subordinates everything to the building up of one emotion in the viewer, that of hatred of Willy. So despicable does Willy become at the end that, when he is murdered by Rubia, no viewer can say that Rubia is at fault. And yet, morally speaking, no one is allowed to take the law into his own hands. The law, in fact, put Willy in prison for the first rape. There is no reason to think that the law will not put Willy to death for the second rape. By conditioning the reader to condone Rubia’s revenge, Brocka succeeds in questioning one of our deeply rooted moral beliefs. The unity that characterizes Rubia Servios contrasts sharply with the tendency of Eddie Garcia in Atsay to exploit Vitug’s versatility even at the expense of tightness. There are shots in Atsay, for example, which could easily be cut without hurting the film’s integrity. Even the train sequence, one of the best sequences in Atsay, is far too long. Rubia Servios is Lino Brocka’s film; Atsay is Romeo Vitug’s. Nora does an excellent acting job; but so does Vilma Santos, and Rubia is a much more demanding and difficult role…” – Isagani Cruz (READ MORE)

Adultery (Aida Macaraeg Case No. 7892) (1984) – “…Napakahusay ni Vilma sa mga eksenang nagngingitngit siya sa mga kapatid niya sa pagkawala ng uniporme o muling pagbubuntis ng mga ito. You can really feel the sense of rage, and futility that she is experiencing. Pero maging sa iba pang quiet scenes ay mahusay rin siya, o kaya y maging doon sa eksenang muntik na siyang mabuko ni Mario, at nang magkomprontasyon na sila ni Phillip. Pero, sa tingin namin, mas lumutang si Phillip sa pelikulang ito at tiyak na in the running na naman siya for best actor next year. Kung minsan ay mata lamang ang kanyang pinaaarte at wala siyang dialogue (like nang mabasa niyang nakunan si Aida o nang makita niya itong sinasalubong si Mario sa gate). Very touching din ang final scene na tinanong siya ni Vi: “Ano ng nangyari sa ‘tin?” At sumagot siya ng: “Huwag mo nang itanong. Baka mas masakit kung malaman natin ang sagot.” Maraming iba pang magagandang touches ang pelikula, tulad ng pagdalaw ng mga babaing taga-block rosary kina Aida at ang sagutan sa court scenes…” – Mario E. Bautista (READ MORE)

Hahamakin lahat (1990) – “…Brocka did Hahamakin Lahat (1990) for Regal Films. This was his third movie with Vilma Santos. The role called for Vilma to be dark, daring and innovative, a complete deviation from characters usually portrayed by the sweet-faced Star for All Seasons. It showed a heroine entering into a marriage of convenience with a ruthless, scheming mayor, a character Brocka created to expose the hypocrisy and corruption of society…” – Paul Mata and F. Caagusan (READ MORE)

Lino Brocka Catalino Ortiz Brocka (April 3, 1939–May 21, 1991), director for film and broadcast arts, espoused the term “freedom of expression” in the Philippine Constitution. Brocka took his social activist spirit to the screen leaving behind 66 films which breathed life and hope for the marginalized sectors of society — slumdwellers, prostitute, construction workers, etc. He also directed for theater with equal zeal and served in organizations that offer alternative visions, like the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) and the Concerned Artists of the Philippines (CAP). At the same time, he garnered awards and recognition from institutions like the CCP, FAMAS, TOYM, and Cannes Film Festival. Brocka has left behind his masterpieces, bequeathing to our country a heritage of cinematic harvest; a bounty of stunning images, memorable conversations that speak volumes on love,betrayal and redemption, pestilence and plenty all pointing towards the recovery and rediscovery of our nation. To name a few, Brocka’s films include the following: “Santiago” (1970), “Wanted: Perfect Mother” (1970), “Tubog sa Ginto” (1971), “Stardoom” (1971), “Tinimbang Ka Ngunit Kulang” (1974), “Maynila: Sa Kuko ng Liwanag” (1975), “Insiang” (1976), “Jaguar” (1979), “Bona” (1980), “Macho Dancer” (1989), “Orapronobis” (1989), “Makiusap Ka sa Diyos” (1991) ( On May 21, 1991 Brocka met an untimely death in a car accident in Quezon City, Metro Manila. In 1997 he was given the posthumous distinction of National Artist for Film – Wikipedia (READ MORE)

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Maryo De Los Reyes’ Vilma Santos Films

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204 films, 70 directors, 5 decades, Vilma Santos, one of the original Philippine movie queens, rose up to become the versatile actress that has been given the fitting title of “Star for All Seasons” because of her capacity to adapt to the changing mores and values of the Filipino woman, giving a face to their plight and struggles, albeit in success both critically and box-office wise in some of Philippine cinema’s classics such as Trudis Liit (1963), Lipad, Darna, Lipad (1973), Burlesk Queen (1977), Relasyon (1982), Sister Stella L. (1984), Alyas Baby Tsina (1984), Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Anak (2000) and Dekada ’70 (2002). This are top ten directors who contributed to her success. – RV (READ MORE)

In 1987, Maryo De Los Reyes directed Vilma Santos that critics considered one of the most shocking film that year, “Tagos Ng Dugo.”  The film was hailed as feminist as seldom a Filipino woman was seen on screen as a murderous serial killer.  It earned Vilma Santos her fourth FAMAS Best Actress.  Ironically, the conservative Catholic church’s award giving body, Catholic Mass Media Awards, agreed with the FAMAS.  They gave Vi their Best Actress award while the critics’ group, Gawad Urian refused to hand-out their yearly award citing there were no deserving films that year.  Reyes last directed Vilma in another memorable off-beat role, the 1992 drama, “Sinungaling Mong Puso.” – RV (READ MORE)

Tagos ng Dugo (1987) – “…A breakthrough for Philippine psychological movies? Probably. Let me explore a few other angles on this seeming cross between Francois Truffaut’s The Bride Wore Black and Luis Buñuel’s Belle du Jour — I don’t know if screenwriter Jake Tordesillas or De los Reyes himself should be congratulated for the cohesion of multi-resultants in this work. Part of this multi-readings would be the movie as a feminist take on womankind’s monthly pains as a form of excuse for female monthly insanities, insanities our machos regard as regular terrorism on the whole of mankind (men or society as a whole). It is with that reading that the ending apologies, by Vilma Santos in the lead role, might be understood as a plea for understanding of how all of woman’s monthly Eve-behavior should not be seen as a Biblical sin but as an equal (to, say, men’s beastly) naturalness. . . . Another feminist reading, more radical perhaps, would treat the film as a view of how Philippine society (the men in it, primarily) approaches provincial innocence, educational weakness, and “females’ weaker sanity” as stimuli for abuse… There is, however, the possibly more general reading of the film as an apologia for insanity qua itself, how it should be treated as a disease instead of as a monster to be eliminated….” – Vicente-Ignacio S. de Veyra (READ MORE)

Sinungaling Mong Puso (1992) – “…Magaling sina Aga Muhlach at Vilma Santos bilang nagtatagong magkasintahan. Lutang na lutang ang pag-arte ng dalawa at nakakatuwa sila sa kanilang mga eksena na nagtatagpo ng palihim tulad ng mag-kita sila sa department store. Dumating si Vilma at hinahanap niya si Aga, hindi nya makita ito hanggang sa mamataan niya ang binata na nakaupo sa may display area. Kinindatan ni Jason si Clara at napatawa na lang ang babae. Mararamdaman mo ang excitement ng mga pagkikitang ito. Nang mahuli ni Ana ang asawa at mag-iskandalo ito, nang umalis na ang asawa at balikan ni Jason si Clara sa loob ng apartment, makikita sa mukha ni Vilma ang pagtatapos ng kanilang affair. Ang sabi niya: “ Hinintay lang kita, gusto kong maghiwalay tayo ng maayos…” Bukod sa maraming eksena na lutang na lutang ang pag-arte ni Vilma marahil ang pinaka-memorable ay ang eksena kung saan binaril ni Vilma si Gabby at sabihin niya ang line na: “mamatay kang kasama ng mga baboy mo…” ito ang pagpapatunay na talagang napakahusay niyang artista.” – RV (READ MORE)

Maryo J. de los Reyes is a film and television director from the Philippines. He began his career in the 1970s. – Wikipedia (READ MORE)

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Eddie Garcia’s Vilma Santos Films

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204 films, 70 directors, 5 decades, Vilma Santos, one of the original Philippine movie queens, rose up to become the versatile actress that has been given the fitting title of “Star for All Seasons” because of her capacity to adapt to the changing mores and values of the Filipino woman, giving a face to their plight and struggles, albeit in success both critically and box-office wise in some of Philippine cinema’s classics such as Trudis Liit (1963), Lipad, Darna, Lipad (1973), Burlesk Queen (1977), Relasyon (1982), Sister Stella L. (1984), Alyas Baby Tsina (1984), Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Anak (2000) and Dekada ’70 (2002). This are top ten directors who contributed to her success. – RV (READ MORE)

Eddie Garcia first directed Vilma in the Marcos film, “Pinagbuklod Ng Langit.”  She reprised the role of Imee Marcos and again co-starred with movie queen, Gloria Romero and dramatic actor, Luis Gonzales after “Iginuhit ng Tadhana.”  Garcia directed Vilma again in 1982′s record breaker, “Sinasamba Kita.”  Overall, the two collaborated in five more films after “Sinasamba,” giving us two of the most memorable Filipino movie lines – confronting the mistress Dina Bonevie, Vi said: “Para Kang Karinderyang bukas sa lahat ng gustong kumain (translated literally into “You are like food restaurant! Open to all who wanted to eat!”) from the movie “Palimos Ng Pag-ibig” and then confronting the rich snotty old Alicia Vergel, Vi said: “Si Val, si Val, si Val na walang malay! (literally translated to “Its Val! its Val!, Its always Val, The one who is innocent!”). – RV (READ MORE)

Pinagbuklod ng langit (1969) – “…Pero higit na tumatak si Luis nang gampanan niya ng dalawang beses si Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos. Ito’y sa kontrobersyal na pelikulang “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” bago tumakbo si Marcos bilang presidente noong 1965. Sinundan ito ng “Pinagbuklod ng Langit” noong 1969. Si Imee Marcos, na ginampanan noon ni Vilma Santos, naalala ang galing ni Luis na mahirap na daw tapatan ngayon. “His acting was understated. A great actor and a good friend. He played a big role in our lives. Halos naniniwala na ako na tatay ko siya dahil sa boses. Mahal na mahal namin si Luis Gonzales,” sabi ni Imee. Ayon sa kanyang kabiyak, huling hiling ni Luis na ipa-cremate ang kanyang labi…” – Mario Dumaual (READ MORE)

Sinasamba Kita (1982) – “…Sobra pala ang lakas ng “Sinasamba Kita.” Tuwang tuwa sina Vic at Mina del Rosario. They started with 38 theatres, by the weekend, 41 theatres na ang nagpapalabas ng pelikula. After 6 days, kumita na ito ng P5,207,416.00. After a week’s time, almost P6 million na ito….” – Billy Balbastro (READ MORE)

Paano Ba ang Mangarap? (1983) – “…A true blooded Vilmanian will not forget the time when a teaser (a very brief movie trailer – around 20 seconds) was shown to the theatres in the summer of 1983. It was Viva films’ “Paano Ba Ang Mangarap?” Another box office hit from Vilma Santos and Christopher DeLeon. The teaser (almost worth the whole movie ticket) was the scene where Lisa, played by Vilma discovered that her son (to Eric’s brother, Jay Ilagan) was gone courtesy of her evil rich mother-in-law (Armida Sigueon Reyna). Here’s the lines and the explosive acting of the Queen. The scene: After running around looking for the baby in all the rooms in second floor of of this huge mansion, Lisa confronted Eric who were stunned to find Lisa’s hysterics. Lisa: “Dinaya n’yo ako! Saan n’yo dinala ang anak ko?!!!” Eric: “Hindi ko alam!” Lisa: “Hindi mo alam…Sinungaling!” Eric: “Lisa, makinig ka muna…” Lisa: “Kasabwat ka ng ina mo! Alam ko matagal n’yo nang plano ito!” Eric: “Ano bang pinagsasabi mo?” Lisa: “Dinaya n’yo ako! Mga Traydor Kayo! Traydor kayong lahat!” Eric: “Lisa, huminahon ka baka mapaano ang bata!” Lisa: “Wala akong pakialam! Ibalik mo sa akin si Jun Jun! Ibalik mo sa akin ang anak ko! Ibalik mo sa akin si Jun Jun! Ibalik mo sa akin….AHHHH” (mahuhulog sa hagdanan). Just this scene alone, Vilma should be rewarded that year’s best actress award! Bravo!…” – RV (READ MORE)

Palimos Ng Pag-ibig (1986) – “…The year was 1986. Palimos Ng Pag-ibig directed by Eddie Garcia was a smashed hit. Vilma co-starred with her soon to be ex husband Edu Manzano and Dina Bonnevie. Despite the mixed reviews from the critics, the film gave us, arguably, one of the most memorable lines in Philippine movie history. The scene was, Vilma, playing Fina was about to leave the house when Ditas, (Edu’s mistress and baby maker) knocked on the door, with her was her husband’s child. She forced herself in. Confronting Ditas, Fina: “Ilang gabi kang binili ni Rodel?” Ditas (Dina): “Isang Gabi lang, malakas ang kanyang punla at nangangailangan lang ng matabang lupa!” Fina: “Okey! So you’re fertile and I’m barren…pero sa mga pangyayari, para kang karinderyang bukas sa lahat ng gustong kumain! Paano mong mapapatunayang ang asawa ko nga ang ama ng batang iyan at wala siyang kasosyong iba?…” – RV (READ MORE)

Saan Nagtatago Ang Pag-ibig? (1987) – “…Tulad ng “Paano Ba Ang Mangarap,” merong ‘dream sequence” ang pelikula kung saan kunwari’y hinuhusgahan si Val na isang baliw. Kung puputulin ang eksenang ito’y hindi magiging sagabal sa paglalahad ng buong istorya ni Gilda Olvidado. Mula sa lumang bahay hanggang sa eksena sa libingan ay mahusay ang sinematograpiya ni Romy Vitug at disenyong pangproduksiyon ni Manny Morpe. Mahusay ang mga katulong na artista mula kay Cherrie Gil, Alicia Alonzo at Alicia Vergel. Mahusay rin si Ricky Davao bilang Rick at Gloria Romero bilang ina ni Rick at Val. Ngunit ang pelikulang ito’y tungkol kay Val at bilang si Val ay nabigyan ng mahusay na pagganap ni Tonton Gutierrez ang papel na sinto sinto mula sa pagsasalita na utal utal haggang sa pisikal na mukha at pa-ika-ikang paglalakad. Tulad ng inaasahan, mahusay si Vilma bilang si Stella. At tulad ng maraming pelikulang ginawa niya sa ilalim ng Viva at sa direksiyon ni Eddie Garcia ay merong linya o dayalogo siya na hindi malilimutan, ito ay nang bigkasin niya ang linyang, “…si Val, si val na wala naman malay…” na magpahanggang ngayon ay natanim sa mga Pilipino na mahihilig sa pelikulang tagalog.” – RV (READ MORE)

Imortal (1989) – “…There are other laughable scenes. Vilma says, “My husband is (music rises ominously) — my husband is (music again) Impotent (music rises to a climax)!” You’d think the husband just contracted the AIDS virus or got castrated by Sparrow units! Shucks, I know several husbands who just can’t do it anymore, and I hear no heavy music when their wives complain. As a matter of fact, wives prefer their husbands to be impotent, rather than be sexually active with other women. Another terrible scene. The car ridden by Christopher and wife Cherie Gil falls off a cliff. Cherie who is pregnant is mortally wounded and dies. And Christopher looks at his dead wife, and holds aloft a new born baby complete with umbilical cord. This is absurd without a caesarian operation by a doctor. The worst scene is when Christopher digs up the corpse of Vilma at the cemetery, amidst thunder, lightning, wind and rain, and embraces her passionately, while she exhibits no rigor mortis, and apparently no smell of formalin. You don’t find this kind of idiocy in a television commercial. Most of my grandchildren, including Angeli who is only four months of age, enjoy commercials more than dramas….” – Hilarion M. Henares Jr. (READ MORE)

Eddie Garcia (born Eduardo Verchez García on May 20, 1929 in Sorsogon, Philippines) popularly known as Manoy is a Filipino film actor and film director…He is the most awarded and nominated person in the long history of the Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences (FAMAS) Awards. He garnered a total of 34 nominations (13 for Best Supporting Actor, 10 for Best Actor and 11 for Best Director). Out of these, he got 6 Best Supporting Actor wins, 5 Best Actor wins and 5 Best Director wins, 3 Hall of Fame Awards, 1 Lifetime Achievement Award and the Fernando Poe, Jr. Memorial Award. He was awarded his first FAMAS Award in 1957 and his last FAMAS, a Hall of Fame for Best Actor, in 2003. The first actor to be inducted in the FAMAS Best Supporting Actor Hall of Fame of the Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences in 1974. – Wikipedia (READ MORE)

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Laurice Guillen’s Vilma Santos Films

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204 films, 70 directors, 5 decades, Vilma Santos, one of the original Philippine movie queens, rose up to become the versatile actress that has been given the fitting title of “Star for All Seasons” because of her capacity to adapt to the changing mores and values of the Filipino woman, giving a face to their plight and struggles, albeit in success both critically and box-office wise in some of Philippine cinema’s classics such as Trudis Liit (1963), Lipad, Darna, Lipad (1973), Burlesk Queen (1977), Relasyon (1982), Sister Stella L. (1984), Alyas Baby Tsina (1984), Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Anak (2000) and Dekada ’70 (2002). This are top ten directors who contributed to her success. – RV (READ MORE)

Guillen gave Vilma her fifth and sixth Gawad Urian Best Actress awards for 1991′s Ipagpatawad Mo and 1993′s Dolzura Cortez. The later also gave Vilma her second grand slam, winning all the best actress awards from local award giving bodies. – RV (READ MORE)

Kapag Langit Ang Humatol (1990) – “…Fortunately, director Laurice Guillen has more faith in her material, more respect. For she has not only come up with a beautifully-photographed, well-edited and generally superbly-acted melodrama. She has also held up to us a mirror of the dreams and aspirations, the frustrations, suffer¬ing and uncomplicated lifestyle of the so-called masa. Moments of the heroine’s unmitigated oppres¬sion in the hands of her evil mistress is age-old reality in Philippine life and, quite logically, litera¬ture. Her soul nearly scarred by her excruciating, degrading experience, she somehow manages not only to survive but also to rise from her humble, bleak origins, when she leaves the hellhole and finds hope and rewards in the city. In true melodramatic fashion, she plots out her revenge, but alas, even in carrying it out, she must pay dearly, nearly tragically. Feminist observers may easily notice that in this picture – as in, they would say, Philippine society -it is the women who run things. They domineer and dominate, manipulating the men, even the men they love. True enough, from the very beginning, it is the mistress and her poor servant who move things, decide, and tell men what to do. It is they who plot out schemes and plan their destiny. The same is true even with the minor characters, those played by Kristine Garcia (who virtually drags the farm stud into a stormy affair and pushes him to run away with her), Eula Valdez (who pulls the trigger that ends a chapter in the drama), Charo Santos (the single mother and self-made tycoon) and Carmina Villarroel (the young woman who tries to extricate herself from the mess which her quarreling mother and grandmother have created). For their part, the men are pushed around, fooled and overtaken by events: the weakling lover (Gomez), the perpetually horny stablehand (Wil¬liam Lorenzo) and the young and rich heir (Jeffrey Santos). All in all, it is a glossy and well-crafted movie, with marvelous performances by Ms. Santos and Ms. Romero.” – Mario A. Hernando (READ MORE)

Ipagpatawad Mo (1991) – “…The movie is poignant, nevermushy. It isnotthe run-of-the-mill tearjerker that relies on maudlin theatrics and melodramatic devices to touch the hearts of moviegoers. Surprisingly, despite the frustrating problem facing the movie couple, moviegoers did not seem to be depressed by the movie. Attempts to “commercialize” the film may be seen in the comic relief provided by the protracted spats between the two kids’ yayas (Ruby Rodriguez and Jinky Oda). But the heavy subject and the conditions in the local film industry allow us to accept the filmmakers’ decision to inject such crowd-pleasing elements. Though the late Lino Brocka has made a posthumous telemovie on the same subject autism — with a similar dramatic situation in the still-unreleased “Lampang Kerubin,” this is the first time in recent memory that a Filipino movie tackles the subject with seriousness and compassion…” – Butch Francisco (READ MORE)

Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993) – “…Taong 1993, nang gawin naman nila ang award winning movie na “Dahil Mahal Kita, Dolzura Cortez” sa ilalim ng OctoArts films at sa pamamahala ni direk Laurice Guillen na nagbigay kay Ate Vi ng ikalawang Grand Slam Best Actress award…” – Willie Ferrnandez (READ MORE)

Laurice Guillen is a Filipino actress and director. A protege of Lino Brocka, Guillen began her first major work as a director with Init sa Magdamag. In 1984 she directed Salome, which was shown at the Toronto International Film Festival and described as “the kind of cinematic discovery that single-handedly justifies the festival’s existence”. Ipagpatawad Mo was also directed by Guillen, as was Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story in 1993, before her retirement from filmmaking. Dedicating herself to the Marian movement, Guillen made pilgrimages to churches and cathedrals throughout the Philippines with her husband, believing that Mary had called on her to experience a spiritual renewal. By 1998 she was thinking about returning to filmmaking, and following a good reception of Ipagpatawad Mo by a group of priests, who encouraged her to back into filmmaking, along with an appearance on Kris Aquino’s talk show, she did so. – Wikipedia (READ MORE)

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Luis Enriguez’ Vilma Santos Films

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204 films, 70 directors, 5 decades, Vilma Santos, one of the original Philippine movie queens, rose up to become the versatile actress that has been given the fitting title of “Star for All Seasons” because of her capacity to adapt to the changing mores and values of the Filipino woman, giving a face to their plight and struggles, albeit in success both critically and box-office wise in some of Philippine cinema’s classics such as Trudis Liit (1963), Lipad, Darna, Lipad (1973), Burlesk Queen (1977), Relasyon (1982), Sister Stella L. (1984), Alyas Baby Tsina (1984), Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Anak (2000) and Dekada ’70 (2002). This are top ten directors who contributed to her success. – RV (READ MORE)

Luis Enriquez aka Eddie Rodriguez first directed a young Vilma Santos in 1968’s “Kasalanan Kaya,” another love triangle genre starring the dramatic trio of Marlene Dauden, Eddie Rodriguez and Lolita Rodriguez. Vilma received an early acting recognition from this film, a FAMAS Nomination for Best Supporting Actress. When Enriquez directed Vilma again, it was a calculated risk. The film allowed a still young Vilma into a bikini-clad lead role opposite her director, Eddie Rodriguez as her leading man. The film was “Nakakahiya,” a May-December love story and an entry to 1975 Bacolod City Film Festival. Aside from making the the film a smash hit, Vilma received the festival’s Best Actress. Enriquez directed Vilma in five more films, the last one was in 1981’s “Ex-Wife.” In this film credits, Rodriguez surprisingly used his actor’s screen name – ‘Eddie Rodriguez and dropped his most known director’s name, “Luis Enriquez.” – RV (READ MORE)

Kasalanan Kaya? (1968) – “…This started the showbiz career of Ate Vi. Her most unforgettable film as a child actress is the Hollywood movie, “The Longest Hundred Miles,” where she co-starred with international film stars Ricardo Montalban, Katharine Ross and Doug McClure. From 1963 to 1969, she did 27 movies as a child actress. At 14, she got her first FAMAS nomination as a supporting actress in “Kasalanan Kaya?” where she played the daughter of Lolita and Eddie Rodriguez…” – Mario Bautista (READ MORE)

Ikaw lamang (1971) – “…Kahit love team na sina Vilma at Bobot Mortiz, ipina-partner pa rin si Vi sa iba’t ibang sikat na male heartthrobs noon.” Jojo mentioned singing sensation Eddie Peregrina (paired with Vi in Mardy and I Do Love You, both shown in 1970), showbiz royalty Jay Ilagan (Inspiration, Remembrance, Ang Konduktora all shown in ‘72, and Sister Stella L in ’84), young actor Paolo Romero (Ikaw Lamang in 1971), and even her rival’s partners, Tirso Cruz III (Dingdong, Give Me Your Love, and Nobody’s Child all in ’73) and Manny de Leon (Teenage Señorita in 1971)…” – Rommel R. Llanes (READ MORE)

Nakakahiya (1975) – “…Hit na hit sa takilya at Patok ang Mr. and Miss R.P. Movies na sina Eddie Rodriguez at Vilma Santos, ang nagkamit ng award bilang “Pinakamahusay na actor at actress sa Bacolod Film Festival para sa pelikulang “Nakakahiya.” At hindi lamang iyan. Nakamit din ng pelikulang ito ang mga sumusunod: Best Picture, best screenplay, best director, best sound, at best film editing awards. Isang bagay lamang ang ikinalulungkot ng mga taga-Bacolod. Hindi nakarating sina Eddie at Vilma upang tanggapin ang kanilang awards. At ang pinakahuling karangalang tinanggap ng dalawang sikat na tambalang ito ay ang pagkakapili sa kanilang dalawa bilang Mr. and Miss R. P. Movies ng taong ito. Isang karangalan ang mapiling Mr. and Miss R. P. Movies. Iisa lamang ang kahulugan nito ang mataas na pagpapahalaga sa kanilang dalawa ng pelikulang Tagalog bilang mga pangunahing alagad ng sining. At hindi naman alangan ang pagkakahirang kina Eddie at Vilma sapagkat kapwa sila dedicated sa kanilang propesyon. Si Eddie, bukod sa isang mahusay na actor, director at prodyuser ay isa pa ring mahusay na scriptwriter. At hindi lamang sa pelikula nagdi-direct si Eddie Rodriguez. Maging sa kanyang weekly tv show, ang “Sanyugto” ay siya rin ang director…” – Ely L. Jovez (READ MORE)

Hindi nakakahiya (1976) – “…Starring Eddie Rodriguez who was married to Barbara Perez who was the best friend of Gloria Romero whose daughter (again!) Vilma Santos fell in love with Mr. Rodriguez, Vilma’s first of May-December flicks. Oh, what a shame and a scandal in the family. A Morality play? You betcha. It’s the 70’s and the times they were changin’. Nakakahiya? Vilma donned a bikini for the first time and the public did not mind. Vilma and Eddie were so good that they triumphed at the Bacolod City Film Festival. Best Picture. Best Director. Best Actress. Best Actor. Beating the likes of Nora Aunor and Gerry De Leon. Ms. Romero and Ms. Perez did not mind second billings. It’s the role that mattered most…Eddie Rodriguez, Vilma Santos and Ms. Gloria Romero, a reprise of their first Nakakahiya film…” – Mario O. Garces (READ MORE)

Simula ng walang katapusan (1978) – “…She had the likes of Eddie Mesa, Tony Ferrer and, of course, real-life love Eddie Rodriguez, as leading men on the big screen. With Eddie, two movies stand out in Carmen’s memory: “Malayo Man, Malapit Din” and “Simula ng Walang Katapusan” (the latter co-starred Vilma Santos). The way Carmen remembers it, her own love story with Eddie could rival the best silver screen romances. “We first got together when I was 16. It was just puppy love. My mom adored him, but I thought he was boring, stiff and too formal.” Two decades after that initial encounter, their paths crossed again. “We starred in a film on the life of Gen. Jose Rancudo. We were both separated [from our spouses] then.” That time around, it was a relationship of equals, she says. “We were both successful in our careers and both mature.” Eventually, they also separated…” – Bayani San Diego Jr. (READ MORE)

Halik sa paa, halik sa kamay (1979) – “…Come 1979, both FAMAS and URIAN recognized Vilma’s effort. Her film directed by the flamboyant Celso Ad Castillo, her director on such hits, Burlesk Queen and Tagulan sa Tagaraw, made a first rate film, Pagputi Ng Uwak was an art film, deserving of all its awards. Vilma got the 1978 Best Picture award as producer together with a string of technical honours for best screenplay for Castillo, Lando Jacob and Ishko Lopez, best director for Castillo, cinematography for Romeo Vitug, musical score for George Canseco, and a deserving best supporting actress to veteran Angie Ferro. Despite the failure of the film to earn the major acting awards for Vilma Santos and Bembol Rocco, the film dominated both award giving bodies and its now considered classic and one of the best Filipino films of all time by many critics. If you ask, Susan Roces was the spoiler of the race between Nora and Vilma. Nora was nominated for Atsay while Vilma for Pagputi. At URIAN, Beth Bautista, did the spoiler. She won for Hindi sa Iyo ang Mundo, Baby Porcuna. The following year at the 1979 FAMAS, Vilma was nominated for her self produced film directed by Eddie Rodriguez, Halik sa Paa, Halik sa Kamay, the trophy went to Nora Aunor for Ina Ka ng Anak Mo…” – RV (READ MORE)

Ex-Wife (1981) – “…In 1980, Ate Vi married budding actor Edu Manzano in Las Vegas, USA, while shooting the film, “Romansa.” She was pregnant with Lucky (now called Luis) when she did “Pakawalan Mo Ako” in 1981, for which she won her second FAMAS best actress award. In 1984, her marriage to Edu ended in separation, and she did movies that mirrored her real-life affairs, “Hiwalay” and “Ex-Wife,” both big hits…” – Mario Bautista (READ MORE)

Luis Enriquez Born Luis Clemente Enriquez on August 23, 1932 in Zamboanga City, Philippines. Famous for his dramatic films with Marlene Dauden and Lolita Rodriguez in the 60s. He wrote, produced and directed films using his birth name Luis Enriquez. On September 12, 2001, Eddie Rodriguez died at the young age of age 69. FAP: One of the greatest dramatic actors of Philippine cinema, he starred in such classics directed by Gregorio Fernandez as Kundiman ng Lahi, Luksang Tagumpay and Malvarosa with Charito Solis, Rebecca del Rio and Vic Silayan for LVN Pictures, Inc. He won a best actor FAMAS trophy for his performance in Sapagkat Kami’y Tao Lamang where he co-starred with Lolita Rodriguez and Marlene Dauden (who won as best supporting actress) under the direction of Armando de Guzman for Hollywood Far East Productions. He tried his hands in secret agent films like Paolo Staccato and Perro Gancho. He formed Virgo Productions with wife Liza Moreno, an actress-writer who wrote stories which Eddie acted in and directed. These films included Babae, Ikaw ang Dahilan, Kasalanan Mo, Ang Pagsintang Labis, Kapag Pusoy Sinugatan, Iginuhit sa Buhangin, Alaala mo, Daigdig ko, Bakit Ako Pa?, and Ikaw. Dubbed as the country’s drama king, he also directed Kung Kailangan Mo Ako (with Sharon Cuneta and Rudy Fernandez), Maging Sino Ka Man and Di Na Natuto (with Sharon Cuneta and Robin Padilla) Minsan Pa and Kahit Konting Pagtingin (with Fernando Poe Jr. and Sharon Cuneta). His real name was Luis Enriquez from Zamboanga City. – Wikipedia (READ MORE)

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Elwood Perez’ Vilma Santos Films

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204 films, 70 directors, 5 decades, Vilma Santos, one of the original Philippine movie queens, rose up to become the versatile actress that has been given the fitting title of “Star for All Seasons” because of her capacity to adapt to the changing mores and values of the Filipino woman, giving a face to their plight and struggles, albeit in success both critically and box-office wise in some of Philippine cinema’s classics such as Trudis Liit (1963), Lipad, Darna, Lipad (1973), Burlesk Queen (1977), Relasyon (1982), Sister Stella L. (1984), Alyas Baby Tsina (1984), Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (1989), Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (1993), Anak (2000) and Dekada ’70 (2002). This are top ten directors who contributed to her success. – RV (READ MORE)

Elwood Perez and Vilma Santos collaborated in seven films. The first one was the trilogy that he co-directed with two other directors, Borlaza and Gosiengfiao (these three are the most underrated and under appreciated directors in the Philippines), the remake of Mars Ravelo comic super hero, Darna in Lipad Darna Lipad. The film was a record-breaking hit film. They followed “Lipad…” with more mature project as Vilma started to transform her sweet image to serious mature/versatile actress. The film was “Masarap Masakit Ang Umibig” in 1977 that also featured Christopher de Leon and Mat Ranillo III. The Perez-Santos team produced seven blockbuster hits that gave Vilma two FAMAS best actress awards. The last one was in 1988 for “Ibulong Mo Sa Diyos” that elevated her to FAMAS highest honour, the FAMAS Hall of Fame award (She won for Dama de Noche 1972, Relasyon 1982, Pakawalan Mo Ako 1981, Tagos Ng Dugo 1987 and Ibulong Mo Sa Diyos 1988). – RV (READ MORE)

Lipad Darna Lipad! (1973) – “…In this episode Valentina, tried to steal Narda’s magical stone. Also, there was a scene where Valentina dressed up as Darna. I love the exciting part where Darna and Valentina battled on top of a high rise building. Darna, was almost a no match to her mortal enemy. Dangerously armed with lazer beams coming out from Valentina’s eyes, Darna was helpless and knocked down several times. Until, she stumbled upon into a piece of broken mirror and used it as a shield againts Valentina’s deadly lazer beams. Darna quickly made her looked in the mirror. Her lazer beams bounced back and she turned into a stone. From the roof, Valentina fell hard on the ground and broked into shattered pieces. Anjanette Abayarri and Cherrie Gil almost did the same scene in ” Darna, Ang Pagbabalik! ” Second Episode was directed by Elwood Perez…” – Eric Cueto (READ MORE)

Masarap, Masakit ang Umibig (1977) – “…Sa pelikulang ito, unang ipinamalas ang senswalidad ni Vilma Santos. Maraming eksenang sekswal ang aktres at maaari talaga siyang makipagsabayan sa mga tulad nina Alma Moreno at Trixia Gomez. Karamihan ng mga sitwasyong ibinigay sa kanyang karakter ay hindi kapani-paniwala. Nariyang gawin siyang modelo, sa ilang piling tagpo ipinakita din ang pagiging estudyante ni Estella ngunit hindi naman tinahak ang mga ito sa kabuuan ng pelikula. Hindi rin maikakaila ang husay ni Christopher de Leon bilang aktor ngunit sa pelikulang ito ay nasayang lamang ang kanyang pagganap. Hindi nabigyan ng tamang direksyon ang aktor kung kaya’t lumabas na sabog ang kanyang karakterisasyon. Si Mat Ranillo III naman ay tila hindi na natutong umarte. Kadalasa’y pinaghuhubad siya ng direktor sa mga eksena upang mabigyang pansin. Masyadong mahaba ang pelikula dahil na rin siguro sa panghihinayang ni direk Elwood na masayang ang magagandang eksenang kanyang nakunan ngunit hindi naman nakaapekto ang mga ito sa takbo ng istorya. Kadalasa’y nakababad lamang ang kamera at nakatanghod sa susunod na gagawin ng mga artista. Hindi ito nakatulong upang mapabilis ang takbo ng pelikula, nakakainip panoorin ang ganitong mga eksena…” – Jojo Devera (READ MORE)

Nakawin Natin ang Bawat Sandali (1978) – “…It has a uniformly good performance by the cast which includes Baby Delgado, Roel Vergel de Dios, Anita Linda, Jose Villafranca and the two leads Christopher de Leon and especially Vilma Santos who has done a surprisingly intelligent and affecting character portrayal. Not since Eddie Romero’s Sinong Kapiling, Sinong Kasiping? (1977) have we seen characters who think, behave and react to problems and situations like mature, sensitive and intelligent people. The characters do give way to occasional hysterical outbursts, but they somehow wake up to their senses before they completely forget themselves. And they are people in believable situations with real problems and genuine emotions. When they talk, they are seldom silly and when they are silly, they are aware of it. But even when they are silly or trite, they are never unsympathetic…” – Jojo Devera (READ MORE)

Magkaribal (1979) – “…Christopher de Leon embodies the physicality and psyche of a sexy beast whose complexity is at par with that of a De Niro or Pacino. De Leon, here in his prime epitomizes the dramatic range and animal magnetism akin to Marlon Brando’s Stanley Kowalski. Alma Moreno’s portrayal of a woman who desires a new life in the face of a very uncertain future is competent. The acting method employed here is able to twist the logic of cliché and reconstitutes the drama of yearning with passion and grace. Vilma Santos shows that the strength of women need not come from the repudiation of “feminine” traits and roles. Neither should they come from brute, shrewish adamance as exemplified by the stereotype, nor from machismo as embodied by her husband. Santos demonstrates that the concept of the beautiful, dainty, feminine and strong are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Rather, these form a character that is finally textured, complex and potentially oppositionist. Magkaribal is commendable for staging clever and well-thought out situations partaking of actual tension and punctuated by defamiliarizing comical scenarios and melodramatic circumventions. A certain style of filmmaking based on genre or other considerations is taken as any distinct mode of creating form in film and is made possible only against a background of options that makes a particular choice significant, meaningful and therefore recognizable stylistically. Film artists work within these possibilities in the process of making art, but are never limited to custom and habit…” – Jojo Devera (READ MORE)

Pinay, American Style (1979) – “…The film was so forgettable that the critics didn’t even bother to write any reviews. The lack of enthusiasm on the part of the critics was compensated with the box office success of the film. Vilma fits the role as the illegal alien, PX. Her attempt to speak fluent English and pretend that she’s rich when she met the boyish looking Christopher was funny and poignant. She was given enough scenes to shine. One was when she was harassed by her landlady, she promised her the rent money the next day and when she’s gone, she opened her refrigerator and found a staled piece of bread. She took bottled water and ate the staled bread, went to the bedroom and found her mom’s letter. Lying down in bed, she started to break down. A quiet scene without dialogue. A contrast from the earlier scenes where she was talkative as she tried to impress Christopher and telling him she’s rich and from a well-known family. It was obvious in 1979, Elwood Perez wasn’t the kind of director you will expect to produce a serious output. He wasn’t a Bernal or Brocka. He’s a commercial director. It was a better effort though, compared to a much more convoluted Magkaribal or their past successful projects like Nakawin natin ang bawat sandali and masakit masarap ang umibig. In Pinay, Toto Belano’s script wasn’t efficient in ironing out the “love quadrangle” plot twists and establishing the characters of four actors. So the blame can’t be put to solely to Perez’ shoulder. There was a scene were Vilma Santos and Christopher were watching a concert which was obviously not part of the script.” – RV (READ MORE)

Pakawalan Mo Ako (1981) – “…The second memorable film experience for me was during early 80s where I saw the free sneak preview of “Pakawalan Mo Ako” at Gotesco Theatre near University of the East. I was one of the lucky ones who managed to get in. My college mates weren’t. They got stocked in the pandemonium outside. I was worried sick as I took the long escalator and saw them being crashed by the crowed. The security guards have to closed the gate of the lobby. Fans became so restless and broke the glass windows (where they displayed posters and still photos) . Inside, It was crowded, hot and wild. We were seeing a more mature Vilma Santos. From the very beginning, the crowed went along the story until one of the climatic scene – the courtroom scene where she cried and swear! Oh my god I still remember the crowd swearing and cursing too! It was so wild!…” – RV (READ MORE)

Ibulong Mo Sa Diyos (1988) – “…Vilma hit the jackpot. After 11 nominations with four wins, her twelfth nomniation produced her an unexpected win. It elevated her to the hall of fame status. All artist who wins five automatically put them to the hall of fame list. It is a big honour but prohibit any one on the list to compete in the future for the same category. Regal films’ Ibulong Mo Sa Diyos, directed by Elwood Perez was a surprised winner. Not only it earned Vilma her fifth award as best actress, it also gave the late Miguel Rodriguez a best supporting actor award and the best director for Perez. Technical awards were also given to Ricardo Jacinto, cinematography, Rey Maliuanag, production design, Gary Valenciano, theme song, and George Jarlego, editing. The late Nida Blanca was also nominated for best supporting actress…” – RV (READ MORE)

“…Elwood Perez is a virtuoso of the camera and is the man behind numerous classic Filipino movies. His intuitive approach to filmmaking and scriptwriting is something worth emulating not because they are campy and sexy but they discuss social ills and promote solutions while tickling the most delicate part of our consciousness—our emotion. Born during the near end of World War II on Feb. 4, 1945 in Mabalacat, Pampanga, Elwood Perez started watching movies at the age of three. He practically grew up breathing, feeling, and thinking about movies. “I want [a] vicarious experience. That’s the only thing I want in my life. I hate the effort to go, let’s say for example to Venice. That’s why I watch films every day. Until now,” the 64-year-old director says. He wrote, directed and acted the lead role in his first Filipino play, Ander di Saya. And he was only nine years old then. From then on, Perez knew what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. At age 25, Perez marked his debut as a film director with Blue Boy in 1970. The film was a flop at the box office but it was revered by critics. Maturing as a scriptwriter and film director, in 1973, commercially successful Lipad, Darna Lipad! was released. Award-winning actress Celia Rodriguez essayed the role of Medusa-like villainess, Valentina, nubile Vilma Santos played the Filipino supergirl (a role that launched her in a series of Darna flicks). To Filipino film industry insiders, Perez is known as the most sought-after movie director of his generation…” – Nickie Wang (READ MORE)

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