this just in! "100" won five major awards at the cinemalaya film festival. best director and best screenplay to chris, best actress to mylene, best supporting actress to eugene, and audience choice award to the movie. congratulations. the praise is richly deserved! too bad i wasn't at the awarding!
the minute she walked in the door, my french language teacher asked why i was absent the previous meeting. so i had to explain why i was curiously not present -- in french, mind you. it was a good thing that i had come prepared for a response. so i explained that i was at the premier of the indie film "100", written and directed by chris martinez, whom i know through eugene evasco. it's an entry to the cinemalaya film festival, and is chris's first feature film. i'm not about to do a review of the film, because i think i lack the necessary skills of a critical movie viewer. all i can say is that "100" doesn't feel like an indie film. i say that because of its high production value (i guess part of the blame goes to chris's background as a director of TV ads). it wasn't shot with an unsteady handheld camera, and lighting was outstanding, for most of the movie. all the characters did great, and eugene domingo threatened to steal the show. she has this overpowering comical presence which nearly matched the amazing and sizzling persona of mylene dizon. oh she's really hot, and essayed her role in this movie really well. now i said, just two sentences back, that lighting was outstanding "for most of the movie". that's because the scenes shot in HK were done with a handheld. it was too obviously different from all the rest of the movie. during dinner immediately after the movie, i immediately had ideas on how it could have been shot, still using a regular video cam, and still achieve its purpose without making these particular scenes appearing like a plastic piece in a glass chess set.
okay, so that was a bit of a review already, but the movie is very well-made. my favorite scene was when mylene, eugene, tessie, and the girl who played marife went skinny dipping. the shot was fantastic, allowing them to strip all the way without making it look forced or unnatural. the movie has many light and funny moments, but i actually cried a little in the scene when mylene's brother bawled like a kid. i was moved by that scene. haha. i'm laughing because i'm rarely moved to tears by movies.
jason also sent me some trivia about the movie, and i'm reproducing them here.
in one scene, mylene eats an entire llanera of leche flan. apparently, she doesn't really like it (how can you not like leche flan?), and with each scoop she put in her mouth, she had to spit it out, necessitating the cut-to-next series of shots. it looked effective actually.
mylene doesn't eat pork. so everytime she took a bite of that crispy pata, there was actually KFC chicken hidden in her hand or partially hidden inside the slab of pork. ugh. crispy pata is so sinful.
the only thing she actually really ate all by herself was the tub of haagen daaz.
in the "kiss a stranger" scene shot along tomas morato, where mylene corners sid lucero and locks lips with him, the scene was taken at least 3 times. what would paolo paraiso think?
ricci chan sang the song played during the credits. now i couldn't remember whether it was a woman's voice i heard singing, or a rapper.
in the scene where they eat tuyo, the audience laughed out loud upon seeing eugene coughing uncontrollably. she was actually really choking on a fish head.
50% of the time, mylene was playing herself. i'm not sure what this means, i guess, because i don't personally know mylene. but this must mean the character, and the character's list, must have been tailor-fit for mylene.
the producer marlon rivera had to paint mylene in yellow for that jaundice effect when she was finally bed-ridden.
i haven't seen any of the other cinemalaya entries, but "100" is a gem. i'm not sure though whether it would have much commercial success as it has few of the elements that make for box-office breaking records (few, because there is a steamy sex scene and some undressing and torrid kissing, haha). some of the scenes might appear to drag, but which i find necessary because this is after all a list of things to do before one's imminent death. of course, death is upon us all, but in the case of mylene's character, it is more certain and draws ever nearer, so her deadline is a lot shorter than most. i have my own list of things to do, and i've talked about them in my blog. i haven't had much of a resolve to achieve all of them, perhaps because i don't have a deadline hanging over me like a guillotine. one really must live life like this day is the last. that way, we don't leave carrying with us too much regret. i've never believed that movies should impart any lessons, but that's a value i learned to appreciate even more after seeing "100". do yourself a favor and see what others have raved about.
and now for some jologation. a movie premier wouldn't be complete without celebrities, and when i'm around celebrities and i happen to have a camera, a photo is mandatory. here are some stars i managed to corner (ah, pen medina was too busy with a girl!).
paolo paraiso and mylene dizon
tessie tomas and meryll soriano
john lapuz and joaquin valdez (host of 100% pinoy)
columnist jessica zafra and eugene domingo
eugene evasco and jason moss (who've collaborated on a book for children) and direk chris martinez
major edit: i've been asked to remove some items in the trivia above, not that they are untrue, but there may have been a failure of perception or communication. i normally wouldn't edit my blog at anyone's request or even demand, particularly in this case when the information i reprinted wouldn't have hurt the movie or damaged the actors' reputations, but considering that the information didn't originate from me, i wouldn't want this blog to be a catalyst for anything anyone would later regret. i'm just completely stunned that the apparent influence of this blog is of a level that people have begun to care. i regularly check my hits counter, and i know at least 80 unique persons visit the blog everyday, but sometimes, i think it's all an imagination, because i don't get that many comments on the blog. so it makes me wonder whether this is read at all by people other than myself.
so i apparently have some form of influence, and my lurking readers are out there, talking about what i've written. i began this blog to write for myself, but lately, i have had to be cautious and aware that i have an audience. if i truly wanted to just write for myself, then i would have kept a written journal. but since i publish my thoughts on the internet, it is inevitable that i should expect others to find me, my thoughts, and my ideas.
enjoy reading, and violent reactions, flaming, fan mail are most welcome.