Jun Robles Lana 2012
New York Film Festival Main Slate
7 October 2012
Selected as the Philippines’ 2013 foreign-language Oscar submission
Cast: Eddie Garcia, Rez Cortez, Gardo Versoza, Armida Siguion Reyna, Alan Paule, Soxie Topacio, Joey Paras, Luz Valdez, Beverly Salviejo
Director of photography: Carlo Mendoza
Music: Jema Pamintuan, Jeff Hernandez
Rene (in a career-topping performance by superstar Eddie Garcia) spends his days revising his last will and testament, grousing to neighbors and colleagues (at the post office where he continues to work even though he is no longer on the payroll), ever in the company of a scrawny mutt with the onomatopoeic name Bwakaw.
Rene shares his bed with a santa entiento inherited from his devout mother, which has grown miraculously over the years but is unable to deliver miracles when they are most needed.
In the film’s most tender and heart-rending scenes, Rene journeys to a nursing home to visit Alicia (Armida Siguion Reyna), whose dementia lifts in a brief moment of lucidity that illuminates the years lost to both of them because of Rene’s long journey to knowledge about his sexuality.
Shot in San Pablo Laguna. Dedicated to the playwright Rene O. Villanueva. Another entirely original film from the Philippines. What is in their water?