Umpisa pa lang gusto ko nang magustuhan ang #sakalinghindimakarating . Una, i love me some Alessandra de Rossi, indie goddess. Ikalaawa i just loved the title. Sakaling Hindi Makarating. The phrase is just filled with wistfulness and longing. Hungganda! Leveling ito ng pagandahan ng title na kung si Mother Lily ang nakaisip, magiging bonggang pelikula.
O direk, may naiisip akong magandang title. Ang title, Sakaling Hindi Makarating. Dali, gawa tayo pelikula.
Ganern.So nung nakita ako online na may screening ito sa Cinema 76, aba gora, book online.
Ngork, full agad ang reservations. Kinabukasan gora, drive sa venue and advance purchased ng dalawang ticket two days before screening. Number 1 and 2 nga yata kami sa listahan ng bumili. Ganung level ang pagkagusto kong mapanood.
WARNING SPOILER AHEAD and all kembulars.
I was looking around and listening kung ano reaction ng mga kasabay ko manood during the packed screening. Mostly bagets sila in their 20’s i think, and they were reacting positively. I guess it’s a generational thing.
I don’t think “Sakali…” is a movie na masusulat ng isang Gen X’er. Iba lang. Hindi kami yung generation na konting kibot, konting heartache gora na and fly to some exotic locale to detox and soulsearch. Wala kasing budget airlines noong time namin, mahal bumiyahe. Wala pa ring call centers noon so young adults don’t have access to disposable income that can fund getaways to any where. The best we could do was maging service crew sa Jollibee or in case gwapo ka at english speaking, McDo.
The movie exists in a universe where young adults can move freely around the country with ease, money is the least of their worries, madaling humanap ng BnB or homestays kahit sa most out-of-the-way places and where complete stangers easily approach each other and wala pang two minutes ay kaya nang magbulalas ang kanilang mga bagahe and deepest heart’s desires. Deepest heart’s desires daw o!
Ang premise ng movie, Cielo, played by Alex de Rossi, is a recently singled girl na bagong lipat but living alone, and is very emotionally vunerable. She suddenly started receiving hand-painted postcards of various places in the Philippines from somebody with a similar initial as her ex. Feeling the need to get out of her limbo, she decided to travel and look for the sender, using the paintings as clues to her destination. In the process dinedma ang bagong kakilalang kapitbahay niyang humohopia sa kanya played by Pepe Herrera.
Following the visual clue, gora si Cielo sa Zambo to find the vinta regatta, and where at a snap of a finger may chumika sa kanyang bagets na super-interested sa iphone niya. Kung ako lalapitan ng bagets na mukhang very interested sa iphone ko, mag-smile lang ako, ilalagay ang iphone securely sa bulsa and quicky move away. But that’s just the nag-iingat me ha. Cielo did otherwise and offer the iphone in exchange for a tour and swimming lesson. Ah, OK, sige. It’s that kind of universe pala.
From there she went to Siquijor then to Marinduque where she met the fabulously man-bunned Manuel, played by the delicious JC Santos, and his sister played by Karen delos Reyes. The two scenes with Cielo and Karen are my favorite in the movie. In the context ng kwento, wala lang yung dalawang eksena pero sa galing nina Alex at Karen, parang nagba-volleyball sila ng linya. It was fun and off-the-cuff natural in contrast sa ibang eksena sa movie na halos makita mo na ang mga kamay ng director na nagpapagalaw sa characters.
Ikot-ikot sina Cielo and Manuel, travelogue feature keme ng Marinduque mask makers kembot and eventually nagdyug sina Cielo at Manuel sa masking-making workshop dahil kahit sino naman siguro gustong eventual makadyug someone who looks like JC Santos. Ako nga hindi lang eventually, ipupush ko talaga ang issue!
Anyways, naloka si Cielo na magising in post-coital splendor sa workshop na somehow ay may ready na kulambo, at production designed na malambot na kama at throw pillows. Naloka siya so much it drove her to call her ex and go back to Cubao pero instead of going home eh she boarded a bus to Pagudpud. Yes it is that kind of movie.
Then the movie shifted focus to Sol, a teenager living in picturesque Batanes with here mom na parang nag-auaudition for any all smiling mommy commercia.
Cielo… Sol… gettit? Gettit?
While there were renovations being done at the family’s B&B, Sol found a stash of handpainted postcards, all addressed but yet unsent. And of course they were all addressed to Cielo’s newly acquired apartment.
Thinking it would lead to her missing father, Sol started to send out the postcards one every two weeks.
This is where the movie lost me.
So it turned out pala that it was Sol who was sending the postcards all along. The postcards didn’t come from various places around the country. If Cielo looked closely as she surely would have, makikita niya dapat na they were all postmarked from Batanes. Di ba nga that is why people send out postcards from all over, precisely for that manually stamped postmark to prove they’ve been there?
This devise just destroyed the integrity ng first half ng movie for me. Hindi naman pala niya kailangang maglimayon sa Zamboanga, Siquijor or Marinduque at makadyug si Manuel . She could have just easily gone straight to Batanes and resolve everything. Ayy ba’t ganun?
Though Teri Malvar wonderfully acted her part, especially yung breakdown scene niya nung narealize niyang she forgot to put a return address saka yung final meet up nila ni Cielo, i felt less than satisfied as a whole. Hungganda ng shots, ok. The beauty of the Philippines, shining through kember. That Cielo started trying to find somebody mysterious and ends up discovering a new sense of self, kuha ko rin yun. But then what?
Mas mabe-betan ko pa siguro kung yung Cielo and Paul angle ang mas inexplore rather than introducing the Sol character. Yung differing POVs ng isang umalis pero hindi maka-move on and the one who was left behind but decided to do so.
Walang factor dito na i am totally crushing on Pepe Herrera and my solution would give him more screen time. Honest. Really. Sorry JC Santos.
But then i could be wrong and totally missed the point. Nanalo siya sa CineFilipino after all/ Go and watch it na lang for yourself so you can decide. Mentally paltok me na lang in the head if i wrong. 🙂