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The Debut (2000)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 560 users   Metascore: 60/100
Reviews: 32 user | 19 critic | 14 from Metacritic.com

The story revolves around Ben Mercado, a talented high school senior who has rejected his Filipino heritage. The long-simmering feud between Ben and his immigrant father Roland threatens to... See full summary »

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Title: The Debut (2000)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Ben Mercado (as Danté Basco)
Jayson Schaal ...
Doug
Brian Card ...
Dave
Mindy Spence ...
Jennifer
...
Susie
Brandon Martinez ...
Rick
Ernie Zarate ...
Tito Lenny
Gina Alajar ...
Gina Mercado
Emelita Moll ...
Tita Connie
Gina Honda ...
Tita Florie
Tirso Cruz III ...
Roland Mercado
...
Rose Mercado
Rawlins Apilado ...
Jun
...
Edwin Mercado
...
Annabelle Manalo
Edit

Storyline

The story revolves around Ben Mercado, a talented high school senior who has rejected his Filipino heritage. The long-simmering feud between Ben and his immigrant father Roland threatens to boil over and ruin the 18th birthday party of Ben's sister Rose. But to Ben's surprise, his sister's celebration challenges his sense of misplaced identity, and the way he regards his father and grandfather. In one night, Ben faces the true nature of his relationships with his family, his friends, and himself. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One night can change a lifetime.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

13 August 2003 (Philippines)  »

Also Known As:

The Mercado Family Debut  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$12,784 (USA) (15 March 2002)

Gross:

$1,743,570 (USA) (8 November 2002)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was never picked up by a major distribution company. Instead, the producers organized a grass roots effort to self-distribute the film. Three years passed between initial principal photography to opening, and another three to have the film travel and screened across the United States. A total of six years before the film made it to DVD and home video. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Holiday (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

well worth the $8, a jewel of a film!
16 April 2001 | by (sf, CA) – See all my reviews

Thank goodness for indie films! Are you are sick and tired of stupid formulaic, cookie-cutter hollywood movies? Then this is a film you want to watch. If you're Fil-Am or have friends who are, you'll going to enjoy this immensely. It captures so many little facets of the Fil-Am culture clash/identity crisis that so many of us go through. I've read & heard about the great amount of difficulty it took to make this film (my daughter attended a Union City, CA screening where the director was present) and I'm not at all surprised that Hollywood displayed no interest in producing or distributing a film about `minorities'-not enough white faces in the film to attract a mainstream audience, right?

Thank you, Gene Cajayon, for making this film, and I wish you the best in your career as a director. Robert Rodriguez and Spike Lee started out doing small films, so I really hope this catches the eye of the industry. Maybe a screening at the Sundance? Perhaps the best thing this film will do is kindle interest in young Fil-Ams about their heritage, culture and history.

Do did you know that:

  • before the Vietnam War, there was the Philippine `insurrection' that


claimed 100,000 Filipino lives

  • the .45 was developed specifically to kill the Filipino `insurgent'




  • the slang term `boonies' or `boondocks' used to describe a place located


way out in the countryside originates from the Tagalog word `bundok', meaning `mountain'

Filipinos are bit more interwoven in the American social fabric than we realize, and with this film, we're a little bit less invisible.


1 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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