Tag Archives: movies

On "Legion" and Why It Bothered Me

When I first saw the poster of this movie, I was curious. Angels and the apocalypse and all that? Hm, this should be a good and interesting movie, right?

So I finally watched it today and I came out of the cinema, and all I could ask was, “HUH?”

Quick background on the movie: God is fed up with humans, so he’s sending the angels to exterminate the people. Archangel Michael defies this order and goes down to protect the baby that Charlie, a waitress in a dusty middle-of-nowhere diner is having, because this baby will save humanity.

If you’ve seen the trailer, it pretty much showed the entire story. There were lots of possessions, lots of guns and fancy flights and fights of Michael and Gabriel.

And that’s just about it.

I wish there was more, but really, that’s it. It was nice to see the angels, but everything else was, well, bad.

For one thing, I felt that a lot of things weren’t explained to me in the movie. So okay, Michael went down to make sure the baby lives. Why is the baby supposed to die? Why should he live? What’s going to happen if he lives? I didn’t get any answer at all, except that Michael tells Charlie, “Show him the way.” Then he tells Jeep, “Read the books, look for the prophets!” What? That just left me scratching my head when the movie was finished. Huh.

And what really bothered me there was how Michael seemed to be more “loving” than God. He said something about how he didn’t lose faith in humanity even if God did, and at the end, when he gave God what he needed. I’m all, “HUH?” I know this movie is just fiction, but how God was portrayed bothered me immensely. The God I know and believe is not like that, and none of His angels, even if it were St. Michael, cannot be more loving than He is.

Come on now. Besides, I don’t think Michael would defy God…and I don’t think God would ever make an order like that. Not the God I know and believe in, the one who sent Jesus to die for our sins. There’s just no way.

Sorry, that just bothered me. It’s not a movie I’d recommend to watch, but if you’re curious with the story and you want to watch lots of guns and weird zombie-like possessed people, well, go ahead. :P In all fairness, Paul Bettany did good in his role, and that’s just about it. I still think they could have done a better story.

Okay now that I’ve written a blog post about the movie, I can now sleep. :P


I’d like to think I’m a true-blue animal lover, and that I can cuddle any kind of animal, regardless if they have furs or scales or not.

But I’m not. I mean, not a true-blue animal lover. I do squee over different animals I watch on TV, but I can only pick up animals when I’m assured they wouldn’t scratch, bite or go ballistic on me…namely, our pets: two dogs and two six cats (our cat gave birth to a litter of four kittens yesterday). :D

But then I come across books and movies like Marley and Me and trailers like these:

Hachiko: A Dog’s Tale

After this, how can you not love animals then?

Okay, I know the American version of movies like these usually sucks…but I can’t help but feel weepy when one guy tells the dog, “You can stop waiting now…he’s not coming back.” Awww. :,-(

Marley and Me had me crying with the book and the movie (and I mean CRY, serious waterworks!), and I have a feeling I’ll be crying buckets when I watch this.

Dinig Sana Kita (If I Knew What You Said)

Rating: [rate 5.0]

Dinig Sana KitaThe film is a love story between a Deaf boy who loves to dance and a troubled rocker girl who abuses her hearing. One lives in the world of solitude and silence, the other in noise and fear. Crossing paths in a Baguio camp that mixes Deaf and hearing kids, both find that they have more in common with each other including a love for music.

DINIG SANA KITA is the first Filipino film to have a Deaf Actor in a Lead role. Romalito Mallari is a Deaf performer that has played several stage productions as actor and/or dancer. It also features several Deaf actors in the cast and ensemble.

Written, directed and produced by: Mike Sandejas
Cast: Zoe Sandejas, Romalito Mallari, Robert Seña, Lorenzo Mara, Mica Torre, Adrianna Agcaoili, Cherrie Velarde-Mactal

I’m not much of a movie-watcher, and I’m not really one to watch independent films for the fun of it. Truth be told, I never really cared about Cinemalaya, even if a friend was part of the production team for one of the movies (Pepot Artista, if you want to know). I’m just not adventurous with movies, period.

So I wasn’t really planning on catching any of the Cinemalaya films for 2009. It wasn’t until my best friend Toni convinced me to watch Dinig Sana Kita. I’ve read about this through Yam’s blog, and then when Toni invited me, I decided to watch the trailer and then I wanted to watch it. But it wasn’t the kind of “I should watch this or else!”…I would have been perfectly fine not to watch it if I did not get the chance, especially since we ran out of tickets on its last day of showing in CCP. But Toni was persistent and he got us tickets for UP Cineastes showing of the Cinemalaya films and I found myself trooping to UP yesterday to watch this oh-so-popular film.

And I’m glad I did.

Dinig Sana Kita (If I Knew What You Said) is a very unique movie — firstly because of the deaf factor. Romalito Mallari is very good, and it’s interesting to know that he’s also really deaf-mute and that he has a lot in common with the character he plays. The two characters, Kiko and Nina, looks like two people from the opposite sides of the spectrum: Kiko, as mentioned is deaf, and Nina is a misunderstood/troubled rocker girl who tries to lose herself her ipods and her band. After a threat of expulsion from Nina’s school she was sent to a Deaf Encounter camp, where she meets and eventually befriends Kiko.

At first I thought that it would be a typical love story, where they meet, disagree and eventually fall in love, but surprisingly, it wasn’t. Though they did fall in love, it wasn’t because they fell at first sight — it was because they became friends first and learned to reach out to each other despite their differences. The love angle is not really the main focus of the film, but in Kiko and Nina’s interactions and also in the people around them.

There wasn’t one part of the film that I wasn’t entertained. I was amused and awed, I laughed and I cried (I didn’t expect to, really, but the end of the film just really had me in tears). It was a very good film, one that I’d really want to watch all over again and even get a DVD once it’s out. This is the kind of story that I wish I had written. :P

Other notes on the film:

  • I thought I would be bored with the sequences where the only conversation happening were just sign language, but I wasn’t. I suddenly remembered the days when we’d have participants from SpED during our youth camps and we’d all learn sign language to talk to them, or they’d teach us how to sign our names. :D Memories. :D
  • Every time I see Robert Seña, I can’t help but think of Colonel Salvi in Noli at Fili Dekada 2000. Haha I’m sorry. His role in that play just stuck to me. :))
  • There were English subtitles all through out the film, even with the song numbers, so we got to see the English translations of the songs. Can I just say that the Filipino lyrics were just more beautiful than the English translation? It’s just more…haunting and sincere. I think I just had a new found appreciation of our language. :)

Dinig Sana Kita will be showing in Robinson’s Galleria Indiesine (sp?) starting August 26 to September 1. Be sure to catch it on those dates, and I promise you won’t regret it. :D I’m definitely watching it again. :D


On Oscars, and books becoming movies

So I woke up late again today because I slept early this morning, and the first thing I saw on TV was the Oscars on TV, which I ended up watching for the last one and a half hours in the comfort of our leather home theater seating (…which is how I liked to imagine it). :P Now, I’m not really much for foreign actors and actresses (heck, even local) as I’m not much of a movie watcher who remembers who the actors and actresses were unless I really loved the movie…so it wasn’t such a big thing for me. But I enjoyed watching the show, especially during Jon McLaughlin’s performance of So Close (Enchanted! ♥).

This made me remember my younger years when the “best” writing I can do was all done in scripts. I used to write Sailormoon episodes in script format back in elementary, where I made sure their new powers came out in my stories. When I stepped in high school, I became the default scriptwriter for our Ibong Adarna, Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo plays and the Florante at Laura video. I loved doing it even if it required me to read ahead, because I get to deliver the story in dialog, which our books totally lacked back then. In college, we had a video production class, where I wrote a 25-page script for class, and then another one for our finals. I think that’s one of the reasons why I have a hard time writing descriptions in my novels. All the dialog in the scriptwriting made me rely on dialog. :P

I think that’s also the reason why I can see some — if not all — of my stories being filmed. At least in my imagination. Complete with soundtrack. Haha. I can imagine scenes that seemed to look better when done live than on paper. Or maybe that’s just my lack of descriptive powers (as of now) that’s making it like that.

I think it would be really cool to have your written works on screen…even if they sometimes butcher it. Heh. My friend Chris did that to one of my works in high school, which I never got to watch so I didn’t know how it turned out. ^^; But seriously, I’d love to have anything I’ve written be acted out. It doesn’t even have to be in Hollywood — it can be just in our local cinemas. Fall Like Rain? Whee.

But first, I have to finish writing that. :D

Enough of the daydreaming; I should get ready. Shopping with mom in a while! :)

Side comment: Ack, I feel like my writing is so…disorganized. I feel like I can’t gather my thoughts correctly and write them down on the blog. Eh, this is what stress does, I knew it.

Meet The Robinsons and Scoop

I’ve been doing some movie watching this week, much thanks to Triskal who can help me watch while on the road, and I thought I’d do some movie reviews since it’s been a while since I last did one. :)

Scoop (2006)

SCOOP (2006)

Rating: [rate 3]

A student journalist, for a college paper, visiting friends in contemporary London happens upon the scoop of a lifetime. Along the investigative trail, she finds magic, murder, mystery – and perhaps love, with a British aristocrat.

Now I only watched this movie all because of the hunkiness that is Hugh Jackman. ♥ I also think Scarlett Johansson is a good actress, so this should be interesting. The movie starts with Joe Stromble’s funeral, which later moves to his soul together with the other dead ones on a boat with the Grim Reaper. He talks to one, who apparently is the old secretary of Peter Lyman (Jackman) and she has reason to believe that he is the Tarot Card Killer, who kills brown haired prostitutes with a tarot card sign after. Scarlett plays Sondra Prensky, a journalism student who is in London for some project. She attends one of Sid’s (Woody Allen) show as Splendini the magician and volunteers for the vanishing act. Inside the box, she meets the ghost of Joe Stromble who gives her a tip on Peter Lyman. So off she goes to investigate, dragging Sid with her. She meets Peter with her fake drowning, and they use this closeness to investigate on him. Sondra falls in love with him, while Sid realizes that maybe Peter really is a fake.

Now the movie is nice, if only because of Hugh Jackman’s presence. But somehow I feel like the movie’s lacking something. I feel like Hugh and Scarlett didn’t have much chemistry together, even if I think they played their roles perfectly. Did that make sense? Maybe it just turned me off that from the first moment that Peter and Sondra met, they both want to get into one another’s pants. That particular part did not feel realistic enough; half the time they were kissing and making goo-goo eyes to each other. I also feel that the investigation/mystery part of the movie wasn’t given that much focus. It dragged on the first part and then quickly wrapped up at the last. Woody Allen was stellar, though, and if it weren’t for him (and yes, the hunkiness of Hugh Jackman), the movie would lose all its charms.

Just three stars, and one is for Hugh Jackman. Sorry, maybe on your next movie, I’ll give you more. But you’re still hot. :P

Meet the Robinsons (2007)

Meet the Robinsons (2007)

Rating: [rate 5]

Lewis is a brilliant 12-year-old orphan who has failed a lot of adoption interviews because of his creativity. On his last failed interview, he decides to create an invention that would let him search deep in his memory so he could see his mother when she left her at the orphanage. He brings this invention to the science fair and meets Wilbur, who warns him of a Bowler Hat Guy. Lewis’ invention screws up much thanks to the said person, and he loses belief in himself. Wilbur tries to convince him to go back to the Science Fair but Lewis doesn’t want to and he doesn’t believe that the former is from the future, so Wilbur brings him to 2037, his current time. Unfortunately, the two of them got into an accident, which makes Lewis stay, making him meet Wilbur’s wacky family as well while the Bowler Hat Guy works on destroying the time and space continuum.

Now this is a good movie. :) I am a fan of cartoons, so this interested me, but the story just pulled me in. Its main storyline played on time travel, and unlike other time traveling movies, this one doesn’t make you confused with the continuity. The characters were wacky, especially the Bowler Hat Guy! The revelations were quite surprising, and the ending was nicely done. The movie stresses the importance of family, and of always moving forward despite all failures. :)

This movie is definitely a keeper, something I’d like to watch over and over again. :) Another notable character there is Goob. Who is he? Watch the movie, you’ll know. :D

World Trade Center (2006)

Rating: [rate 5]
World Trade CenterThe World Saw Evil That Day. Two Men Saw Something Else.
Directed By: Oliver Stone
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Michael Peña, Maria Bello, Maggie Gyllenhaal
Runtime: 129 minutes

September 11, 2001, around 9:00pm Philippine time. I remember I was at home, on the Internet, minding my own business when my dad switched to CNN and saw a pillar of smoke coming from one of the Twin Towers. He told me about it, and all I did was glance at the TV, thinking it was just some kind of special movie effect, forgetting that it’s on CNN. The next day, I woke up to the news video of the two towers collapsing and going up in smoke. That afternoon, I went online and saw most of my online friends in one message board I post in all sharing sorrow over the tragedy.

It’s been five years since that happened, and since I wasn’t affected directly being on the other side of the world, the tragedy didn’t really have that much bearing on me. It saddened me mostly because of all the deaths, but I didn’t share the same sadness Americans felt for having to witness and experience such a big blow like that.

Last night, I was given a chance to watch World Trade Center, the true story of two Port Authority Police members John McLoughlin (Nicolas Cage) and Will Jimeno’s (Michael Peña) attempt to evacuate people, in turn getting trapped under the collapsed buildings and their rescue. It also shows how their families went through the entire ordeal, and how people, not only Americans, can find goodness amidst all the tragedy and evil in the world.

“It’s like God made a curtain of smoke, shielding us from what we’re not ready to see.”
– Staff Sgt. Karnes, before going to Ground Zero to help in the rescue mission.

The movie is quite long, and since it’s based on a true story, don’t expect anything other than a display of the buildings, some flashbacks, their families and their conversation as they wait for rescue underground. The movie was panic-inducing because of the idea that the rubble around them could collapse any time if there were more sudden movement. I was half-covering my eyes and fighting back the tears as I felt myself empathizing with the Americans, especially the families of John and Will. Although I don’t really know the two officers that the two actors portrayed, I think Cage and Peña were perfect for the roles.

My favorite part would be when Jimeno saw Jesus giving him a bottle of water when he closed his eyes. I think that is the best thing they included in the movie. :)

After watching it, I immediately read all the information I can on McLoughlin, Jimeno, the movie, the other casualties and the survivors. The movie sure opened my eyes and became more aware of the tragedy that happened five years ago, but it also made me see that people are born with good hearts. :)

And after watching the movie, do say a little prayer for all the people who lost their lives in this tragedy.