Flashbacks encompass the history of the Philippines as well as the life story of the elderly Daniel Aguila. The Aguila family gathers to celebrate Daniel's 88th birthday, but the old man is... See full summary »
Flashbacks encompass the history of the Philippines as well as the life story of the elderly Daniel Aguila. The Aguila family gathers to celebrate Daniel's 88th birthday, but the old man is nowhere to be seen -- he has been missing for a decade. Suspecting that his father is in Mindanao, one of his sons takes off for that region in a determined search. Along the way, his memories of the nation and his father's life tell the story of eighty tumultuous years of personal and historical development. Written by
Before I mention anything else: I am a European (from Belgium, to be exact, and I started living in the Philippines at the end of 2007). Before 2007, I had hardly seen any Philippine movie in Europe. No matter how the European cinema claims to be an open portal to International Cinema: Philippine movies are a bit out of that league, it seems. Anyway, I saw Aguila on television somewhere in 2008. Spoken in Tagalog (the official Philippine language) but with English subtitles... Well, I can only say I was very impressed with it. Not because it is a Phlippine movie (in the end, it does not matter from which country a movie comes to leave an impression on viewers), but because there was so much to discover in it... Of course its foremost an account of historical events, especially those events which are important to Philippine history for lets say the last 150 years... For Americans: one can compare it almost with Little Big Man, because almost everything which is told in the movie is acted out by one actor. In Little Big Man the actor was Dustin Hoffman; here it is Fernando Poe Jr. (probably the biggest movie-star the Philippines ever had). Almost, but not quiet, because this movie is not just a copy of any other movie. No doubt its just a cinematographic retelling of historical events. Many people might get bored with it; after all: who wants to hear or see about historical events anyway ? No young people, because they only want to see "modern" movies... Besides all that, of course, many people can argue about the importance of this movie (apart from its historical meaning)... Anyway, to me: I remember 1 monologue out of it spoken by the villain-businessman; "When I offer a meal to a beggar coming at my door, I will be a good person...But tomorrow he will be hungry again... If I offer him a job, and I will make a profit out of his work myself, I am a profiteer..." Words to that effect anyway... That monologue sums up SO much of what is going on in the so-called 3th world and what goes on between the 1st and 3th worlds, that its nearly immeasurable and no doubt next to brilliant. So OK, its a socially-inspired movie (what could anyone expect else from a 3th world country movie about their history ?). But such line of dialogue should find a place in everybody's memory anywhere... It's a shame and pity most viewers nowadays only treasure Super-Hero-Movies as the most valuable...
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