December 23, 2014, 8:06 am
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Indie is king in 2013

KIM Chiu leads the cast of four new local films that will open in theaters after the Metro filmfest. She is reunited with ka-love team Xian Lim in Star Cinema’s new romantic comedy. The Kim-Chiu tandem that proved to be a hit in “Bakit Di Ka Crush ng Crush Mo,” the 4th topselling movie of 2013 after “It Takes a Man and a Woman” (John Lloyd-Sarah), “Four Sisters and a Wedding” (Bea, Angel, Toni), “She’s the One” (Dingdong-Bea). Their new movie is entitled “Bride for Rent” and it’s slated to open on January 15. 
 
Another local film slated to open on January 22 is “Mumbai Love” from Solar Entertainment, starring Solenn Heussaff and newcomer Kiko Matos as an Indian prince. This is partly filmed in India, co-starring Martin Escudero.
 
From Viva, they offer “ABNKKBSNPLAko” (or “Aba, Nakakabasa Na Pala Ako”) based on the hit book by humorist Bob Ong. This will star Jericho Rosales as Bob, along with Andi Eigenmann, Meg Imperial, Bing Pimentel and Vandolph Quizon.
 
The last local film to open in January is “Sa Ngalan ng Ama, ng Ina at ng mga Anak,” starring the Padilla family. This is headed by Robin Padilla and co-stars daughter Kylie Padilla and niece and nephews Bela, Matt, RJ and Daniel Padilla, with wife Mariel Rodriguez Padilla. This is originally title “Kuratong Baleleng” and its playdate will come close to Robin’s award-winning Metro filmfest entry, “10,000 Hours.”
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Gov. Vilma Santos’ award-winning Cinemalaya film, “Ekstra,” was shown recently at the Bangalore International Filmfest in India and here are the reviews of Indian critics about it.
From Tusshar Sasi in “Romancing Cinema,” 27 Dec 2013: “I am aware of the Filipino culture and their language which could be one of the reasons why I happened to be amused by Jeffrey Jeturian’s ‘EKSTRA (The Bit Player)’ when I caught it at the 6th Bangalore Film Festival. But, that is not entirely the reason why the movie works big time! The prime reasons in that order would be...Vilma Santos, a sensational performer. She lives the character of an extra artiste in television soaps. Flawless, compelling and award-worthy, is her turn...To sum it up, ‘Ekstra - The Bit Player’ is a poignant film which is certainly worth your time.”
 
From Harsh Mander in “The Hindu,” 28 Dec 2013: “Adopting a diametrically opposite idiom of exuberant comic irony is Philippine director Jeffrey Jeturian’s ‘Ekstra (Extra),’ an affectionate salute to the underdog. It follows one day in the life of a middle-aged woman extra, a bit player in television soap operas, after she is woken in the early hours of the morning one day to drive to a location shoot in the neighboring countryside. The director subversively casts one of the Philippines’ best-loved actors, Vilma Santos, in the role of the extra. The viewer for once roots for the anonymous crowd — the farmer on the fields, the domestic help patiently waiting, and the guests in the background of a wedding — while the lead players strut and recite their lines. We watch the class system in the enormous gaps in food and lodging between stars and extras. The film mocks the hilarious script trajectories of the soap opera, and the vanity and fragile egos of its lead players. I often felt that if just the names were changed in the film’s script, it could have been located in India with no substantial changes.”
 
Congratulations to Ate Vi and Direk Jeffrey Jeturian for the acclaim they got in India. This early, box office director Wenn Deramas is already preparing Ate Vi’s entry in the Metro-Manila Film Festival of December 2014, a dramedy that will pair her with Ai Ai de las Alas.
 
When the movie starts, Ai Ai is the alalay of Ate Vi, who’s rich and powerful, but their situations will be reversed at film’s end and it will be Ai Ai who’ll be the boss and Ate Vi who is the alalay. So if plans won’t miscarry, this means that Ate Vi goes from “Ekstra” to “Alalay.”
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Here is a list of local films shown in theaters in 2013:
 
January – “Menor de Edad,” “Seduction” 
 
February – “A Moment in Time,” “I Love You Pare Ko,” “Gabriel Ito ang Kuwento Ko,” “Alfredo Lim The Untold Story”
 
March – “The Fighting Chefs,” “It Takes a Man and a Woman,” “Gapang,” “Pagari”
 
April – “Bad Romance,” “Coming Soon,” “Bayang Magiliw”
 
May – “The Bride and the Lover,” “Leona Calderon,” “Bromance”
 
June – “Juana Change,” “Dance of the Steel Bars,” “Bangungot,” “Kapit sa Patalim,” “Four Sisters and a Wedding” 
 
July – “My Lady Boss,” “Tuhog,” “Daniel Rapido,” “Boy Kabayo,” “Bakit Hindi Ka Crush ng Crush Mo?” and the Cinemalaya entries: “Ekstra The Bit Player,” “Liars,” “Amor Y Muerte,” “Porno,” “Sana Dati,” “Babagwa,” “Diplomat Hotel,” “Debosyon,” “Nuwebe,” “Quick Change,” “Instant Mommy,” “Transit,” “Purok 7,” “Rekorder,” “David F.” 
 
August – “Raketeros,” “Ang Huling Henya,” “Talamak,” “On the Job” 
 
September – “Momzillas,” The Sineng Pambansa entries: “Sonata,” “Lihis,” “Lauriana,” “Badil,” “Ano ang Kulay ng mga Nakalimutang Pangarap,“ “Bamboo Flowers,” “Tag-araw ni Twinkle,” “Tinik,” “Bahay ng Lagim.” CineFilipino entries: “Ang Kuwento ni Mabuti,” “Huling Chacha ni Anita,” “Ang Pabo Man ay Turkey Rin,” “Puti,” “Mga Alaala ng Tag-araw,” “Bingoleras,” “The Guerilla is a Poet,” “The Muses” 
 
October – “Kung Fu Divas,” “Metro-Manila,” “Bekikang,” “She’s the One” And the Quezon City Filmfest entries: “Gaydar,” “Hello World”  
 
November – “Status: It’s Complicated,” “Sapi,” “When the Love Is Gone,” “Call Center Girl” and the Cinema One entries: “Kabisera,” “Woman of the Ruins,” “Philippino Story,” “Shift,” “Alamat ni China Doll,” “Saturday Night Chills,” “Bendor,” “Angustia,” “Islands,” “Bukas na Lang Sapagkat Gabi Na,” “Riddles of My Homecoming,” “Blue Bustamante,” “Iskalawags,” “Pagbabalat ng Ahas,” “Sitio” 
 
December – “Sayaw,” “Bodegero,” “Morgue,” “Ang Misis ni Meyor,” entries to CineManila Digital Lokal: “How to Disappear Completely,” “Ang Mundo sa Panahon ng Bakal,” “Boogie”; and the Metro Filmfest New Wave entries: “Maestra,” “Dukit,” “Saka-Saka,” “Island Dreams” and “Mga Anino ng Kahapon,” the Metro Manila Film Festival entries: “Girl Boy Bakla Tomboy,” “My Little Bossings,” “Kimmy Dora: Ang Kiyemeng Prequel,” “Pagpag: Siyam na Buhay,” “10,000 Hours,” “Pedro Calungsod: Batang Martir,” “Boy Golden: Shoot to Kill” and “Kaleidoscope World.”
 
That’s a total of 108 full-length films and it’s to be noted that they’re mainly indie films shown to limited audiences in the various film festivals held during the year. The best films of the year come from these indie films. The only exceptional mainstream films we have this year are “On the Job,” “Kimmy Dora, Kiyemeng Prequel” and “Boy Golden.”
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