‘WALANG FOREVER’ is a gem found in a haystack.
It is not every year that we find a film as good as this in the history of Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) especially in the recent years, and more particularly in a romantic comedy genre so it is only fair to give the the film the honor it deserves.
Well-written, and perfectly-implemented, ‘Walang Forever‘ is one of the best romantic comedy (romcom) films the Philippine cinema has ever produced, if not the best at all. In a country where romcom is often shallow, and relies only on the names of the lead stars for likability and box office success, having a film as nicely done as ‘Walang Forever‘ is definitely a great improvement, if not a fantastic change. The film offers the right amount of comedy enough to soften the heart of the viewers and share a few laughs within the first half, only to be bombarded with heartwarming, solid scenes of persistent love on the second half, and cap it off with beautiful scenes of true, mature love towards the end.
Though the film did not veer away from commercialism as what MMFF movies are known for (see: ads), ‘Walang Forever‘ did it almost natural and light, thus, forgivable.
The ‘interview style’ used in the film is somehow overused especially lately but we could only care less, as it threaded the film’s sequences flawlessly from beginning till the end.
Maybe it’s just me but there seems to be a missing scene from how the interview with Phoemela Barranda ended. Nevertheless, the film is oozing with beauty, love, and everything every romcom should have.
Saying it’s Jennylyn Mercado‘s best performance by far could be an overstatement, but we believe it is. And not to discount her performance in ‘English Only Please‘ that won her her first MMFF best actress trophy last year, her portrayal of her role in ‘Walang Forever‘ is Mercados’s new best performance, to say the least. We wouldn’t be surprised should she win her second MMFF best actress trophy this year.
Mercado is not only that well-rounded, beautiful actress with a glowing skin, she could easily adapt a new character from one film to another as well, making her one of the finest actresses in the country today. It is only right to say that you can give her whatever role and you could sit back, and see how she does it perfectly, we suspect. Not only that, give her whoever as a leading man, and she’d easily find their ‘click.’
Mercado looks perfectly well with leading man Jericho Rosales here. Same thing, if not better when she was paired with Mark Herras or Dennis Trillo or Derek Ramsay in her previous films.
For his part, Rosales remains to be that actor who could pull it off. His best actor wins in the past speak for this actor’s versatility, and his performance in ‘Walang Forever‘ is enough to overcome possible comparison with another fine actor, JM De Guzman, who was originally cast to play his role. Rosales’ charisma is overflowing, and he is lovable as always — may he be that ‘playboy’ girls hate or a dying cancer-stricken guy. For his role in this film, Rosales is on his way to winning best actor having John Lloyd Cruz of the action-drama flick, ‘Honor Thy Father‘ as his biggest rival. We are confident that Cruz and the viewing public wouldn’t mind should Rosales bag it this time.
‘Walang Forever‘ is definitely director Dan Villegas‘ best film to date. He mixed humor and drama perfectly. But what I like more about this flick is how he used each character to get his message across without the need for in-your-face explanation, a sign of respect to this day’s thinking moviegoers. And yes, Walang Forever’s ensemble deserves a round of applause.
With this improvement in the local romcom films, we could only expect a bigger audience to support the local film industry. That’s if the support given to the highest grossing film in the Philippines today, ‘A Second Chance,’ which features John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo wasn’t given for the right reasons.
Verdict: Highly Recommended
Rating: 9/10 Stars
Note: This review is part of our MMFF 2015 Movie Review project for this blog. We aim to watch all the film-entries in this year’s festival not only to write reviews about but also to encourage discussion among our thinking readers. After all, MMFF is definitely here to stay every Holiday seasons whether we like it or not. Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.