Monday, December 28, 2015

Movie Review: Honor Thy Father

I may be grading Honor Thy Father to a curve, but this has to be one of the better Filipino films I've seen in years. It was not without its flaws - some characters were rather underwritten and a couple of plot devices seemed a little contrived - but it was expertly structured and set up, the sequences were pretty nail-biting and well staged, and the narrative was unexpectedly layered with subtexts relating to our culture. Erik Matti's direction was masterful and the performances were first rate. Meryl Soriano was suitably tentative as Kaye, but it was John Lloyd Cruz' take on the role that had me in awe. The shift in image for him as an actor was jarring but oddly convincing as he managed to entirely remove the gloss of his previous rom-com performances to something grittier. There was an intensity and quiet toughness with genuine sincerity to his portrayal. Honor Thy Father was largely character-driven, but it was far from a quiet, intimate drama. The fear, aggression, thrill and emotions were well represented throughout the film and that made this not only an engaging drama, but a gripping thriller. Something I genuinely didn't expect. 8.5


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