Sunday, March 29, 2009

Our Dogs Finally Succeeded in Making Me Sick…

The Baguio Country Club is using a new cheese grater. Slightly finer than usual. Making my favorite mamon, which I’m chomping on as I drive to the store this morning look like it’s been topped with creamy yellow maggots… Welcome to another Sunday in Baguio City, Mr. Golangco, where weekends are only felt when you look at the fucking calendar…

I still have a clogged nose from that flu I caught on my first morning in our new/old house. I underestimated how cold it could be in the mornings there. Amazing thing in Baguio is how temperatures can vary greatly in different parts of the city. At least I’m not blowing out blood-spotted semi-solid globs of snot like I did yesterday morning…

I blame the dogs.

Two nights ago, they took my pillow, along with most of my space on the bed, which resulted in me not getting my share of the fucking blanket. I thought, “what the hey, they need it more than I do…” NOT!

Worst of all, the virus that caused my outgoing fever apparently chose Marge as its next base of operations. Poor girl was running up to 38.9 degrees last night… and the dogs still took my pillow…

Marge needs a few drops of Tempra, and I need another pillow…
…and I can’t wait to get back to Manila for another spell, and another round of Maverick craziness…

Monday, March 09, 2009

Movie Review: Watchmen (Must-Watch-men)

In my quest to clear my mouth of the bad taste of over-expectation from “You Changed My Life,” I make myself a one-man date to catch the opening day of the ultimate geekfest “Watchmen” last Friday.

So I’m guessing this is going to be among the gazillions of reviews on this project that had herds of nerds, and piles over piles of geeks drooling over the trailers over the past several months. Hell, threw parties over just mere Hollywood buzz for the past twenty-something years… Yes, I admit it… I’m one of THEM…

So I’ll keep this one short. I promise.

I liked it. ‘Would’ve loved it considering its relative faithfulness to the ‘sacred” source material. Honestly preferred the more action-packed climax in the movie, where Nite-Owl didn’t look like the wimp he was made to be in the graphic novel. Characterizations were pretty dead-on, while costumes were redesigned to be more “realistic” but still capture the essence of the original four-color costumes.

I suppose the greatest tragedy about this movie is that it is based on a graphic novel that is considered almost biblical by geeky, acne-infested fanboys like me. Owned in several copies, read and reread until practically known by heart. Most likely the same bunch of losers lining up to see the movie. Thus, further coloring one’s already rosy opinion, and taking away any potential surprises. And where the best movies draw one’s breath away with shocks and keep the audience at the edges of their respective seats with anticipation of what will happen next, Watchmen was doomed to fail.

With all due respect to Director Zack Snyder, he did a damn good job. So did the cast. Overall, the film is one solid package. But somehow, the whole thing felt more like a fanboy’s religious homage and simple realization of a beloved story in another medium. Not the same experience I had with “Spiderman 2” or “the Dark Knight,” but still an indispensable addition to one’s original DVD library when the disc inevitably comes out.

For fanboys like me, see it because if you don’t, you lose all geek cred. For regular movie-lovers… I am honestly not sure. But I can assure you that it is a major visual experience.

Catch you later…

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Movie Review: You Changed My Life

Before anything else, kindly refer back to my review of the first movie:

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Hello there. Welcome back…

Okay, I hereby assume that you took the time to take a look (or second look) at my glittering review of “A Special Love,” the surprisingly entertaining movie that precedes the latest Sarah and John Lloyd vehicle “You Changed My Life.” As such, I hope I have laid down enough of a foundation of goodwill to say what I have to say about the currently showing flick.

It was bad. I’m sorry. I know this will come as a surprise. Believe me, even my wife was as surprised as I was at how much we didn’t like the movie.

"...the very same ingredients, but this time cooked using the nigh-perfectly clichéd Pinoy teen love team recipe... to cringe-worthy effect..."

The story starts almost immediately on the heels of the first movie, which is a rather common, yet effective device for sequels nowadays. I was thinking that this is a good way to kick off the movie since it will mean that Sarah can still play the unjaded, doe-eyed, “I-can’t-believe-I-am-where-I-am,” Laida Magtalas to the hilt. And it can mean a potentially interesting study of how a middle class girl can possibly integrate herself into an upper class family to potentially hilarious results. So many wonderful story possibilities.

But sadly, none of that happened.

From a first movie of quite realistic situations and almost realistic characters, here we are served what is essentially the very same ingredients, but this time cooked using the nigh-perfectly clichéd Pinoy teen love team recipe. All to cringe-worthy results. The only thing missing was the giant Regal song-and-dance number halfway through the flick.

The plot is so convoluted and forced that I won’t even talk about it.

The chemistry between the two leads remains. Unfortunately, their talents are drowned by a script that sounded like it was meant for people ten years younger. They over-act, and desperately try to bring some old tricks back, like the “sun dance,” Sarah mistaking John Lloyd’s move as a sexual advance, but they all fall flat. Obviously, the only story inspiration for this movie is the almost-certainly massive box office return.

The only consistently bright points of amusement are the side comments from the wise-cracking tag team of Joross Gamboa and Gio Alvarez. I’m guessing a different set of writers tackled those side characters.

It is even sadder to note that the most entertaining parts of “You Changed My Life” were the parts where “A Very Special Love” was shown in flashbacks.

It’s truly a shame that the excellent premise and potentially positive creative legacy of “A Very Special Love” had to be marred by this seemingly haphazardly done project. They should have just left the previous movie alone. If you’re a fan of a good Pinoy rom-com, then just keep watching the first movie, enjoy it, and pretend this second movie was never made. Of course the bad news here is that Sarah Geronimo and John Lloyd Cruz have such enormous fan-bases that this train-wreck will still surely make money. Thereby vindicating how Star Cinema will brush off opinions like this review, and revert to churning out shit.

I should’ve just gone home to spend time with Marge…

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Catch you later…