Patty (woodycakes) wrote,
Patty
woodycakes

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A Very Special Love

Listen to me and Pamy go nutsPhotos courtesy of Star Cinema
I know I tend to rave about everything, but rarely do I rave about Filipino movies. I've seen a bunch of indie films recently, but it's been quite some time since I saw a commercial film and from Star Cinema at that. Last night, I was ready to go to bed, when Pamy managed to get me out of the house and into the malls to watch A Very Special Love.

I have to say that going into it, I was neither a fan of John Lloyd Cruz (who played Miggy) or Sarah Geronimo (who played Laida), but by the end of the film, I was converted. Seriously. In two hours, I was sooooo in love. What exactly did I love about the movie? Surprisingly, quite a lot.

The Script
Unlike Made of Honor, this had a tight script. Everything was set-up perfectly, the characterizations were right, and I didn't cringe with any of the lines (*cough*pinagmukha mo akong tanga sa tuktok ng Santorini*cough*). None of the scenes felt contrived and it didn't feel like it lasted 2 hours either.

I'm usually cringing when lines are said because of how cheesy they are, but the ones for this movie were just right. The characters' actions had basis on their personalities and nothing felt like it was pulled out of nowhere.

According to my friend, Lee-Ann, they wrote the script as they went along. I'm not sure what they did exactly, but props to the writers and the consultants that included the likes of Ricky Lee, Olivia Lamasan, and apparently a prof of Pamy's, Amor Olaguer because I haven't been impressed by a script in a long time.

The Direction
You can have a great script, but if you've got a crummy director, there's no point. I bow down to Cathy Garcia-Molina, because she totally raised the bar on this one. All her shots were beautiful and consistent and she really brought the script to life.

I'm guessing the director made a lot of decisions regarding a lot of things, and since I totally enjoyed this movie, she must have made some pretty fabulous choices. I thought the whole thing was consistent. Maybe I'd ask her to change the title of the movie or the font on the poster or maybe the poster but those little little faults are totally out-shadowed by the awesomeness of this movie.

The Production
From Miggy's wardrobe, to the sets, to the camera direction, to the score, I thought the whole thing was well thought of. I especially loved set design cause their living spaces and offices looked real without trying too hard. I thought Miggy's step-sibling's sosyal house was tasteful enough. Laida's bedroom was too cute and Miggy's zen-like apartment looked like it was lived in.

I'm really particular with camera handling because I love to watch old Filipino action movies on Cinema One and I'm so annoyed by the inconsistency and pointless shots they'd make in movies with Eddie Garcia and Philip Salvador. Thank goodness this movie didn't annoy me in that way and instead made me really love it more.

The Actors
Filipino movies are known to have a boatload of ensemble cast members just so that their entire artist center will have jobs, but this movie, I have to say didn't have THAT large a cast and everyone was pretty damn useful. I'm not a fan of Matet De Leon or Joross Gamboa, but they totally wowed me as the staff at the magazine.

And the 'rich' family of Miggy weren't half bad either. Rowell Santiago was restrained in his acting (which is good cause he could have gone all out crazy), Dante Rivero was the silent patriarch and I'm not used to seeing him outside rapist roles so it was nice to see him this way. I also thought Irma Adlawan did a fantastic job as the mom of Laida.

Of course there was Sarah Geronimo. I'm not a fan of this girl (but I do think she's a great singer), so it really surprised me that she was so natural in the role. I didn't feel like she was overacting at all and it just felt like it was real. I'm glad they didn't cast John Lloyd's usual loveteam, Bea Alonso, because I don't think she would have done the role justice the way Sarah did it. I totally felt for her character when she was happy and when she was sad. She was just fabulous in the role!!!!
The Miggy stares that got us meltingPhotos courtesy of Star Cinema
The Stares
But really, the cherry on top of this delectable treat was of course, John Lloyd Cruz. I always thought he was a pretty cute artista, though I never understood why Sam adored him. Now I do. This guy is actually pretty freaking amazing.

I really felt him connect to his character and really brought Miggy Montenegro to life. As the poor little rich boy, I totally thought he gave the character depth instead of making him the two dimensional neurotic boss. He was just amazing. I totally bought his crying scenes and I totally loved his happy scenes. This guy is going to be huge if he isn't already.

But let's not fool ourselves. Obviously, this guy is pretty damn cute too. And the movie capitalized on that. Everytime Miggy would stare longingly either into space, a tomb stone or Laida, they'd cut to a close-up of him and why not, right? This guy's mug was made for close ups. I'm no actor, but staring into the camera as if enticing us to come a little closer can't be easy. He was able to convey so much with just that look.

I swear I was melting in the cinema and we weren't shy to let the others know. Hands down the most reactive audience member ever, I'd shriek when it got crazy and sniffle when it got sad. But really, I'd get all kilig anytime Miggy entered the frame and we've got John Lloyd to thank.

So if you haven't yet seen it, go catch it now, before it's too late! We were scared that it didn't make money because at the last full show at SM The Block, there were around 20 of us in the cinema. Apparently, it's been showing for a month. And I read it made quite the kill at the box office. So grab a friend and get kilig over John Lloyd and Sarah because it was so worth my money (or rather, Pamy's money). But see, I wouldn't mind seeing it again at all.
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