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Nasaan si Francis? (2006)

 -  Comedy  -  4 November 2006 (USA)
4.8
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Ratings: 4.8/10 from 16 users  
Reviews: 2 user | 2 critic

Two friends go to Francis' hacienda house set in Victorias to borrow money. Instead of lending them money, Francis proposes a drug deal involving Ecstasy which will earn the two a lot of ... See full summary »

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(as Gabby Fernandez)

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Title: Nasaan si Francis? (2006)

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Cast

Cast overview:
Jeffrey Quizon ...
Francis (as Epy Quizon)
Paolo Contis ...
Boy
Rico Blanco ...
Sonny
Karl Roy ...
Marmar
Tanya Garcia ...
Sofia
Julia Clarete ...
Candy
Rita Avila ...
Linlin
Ricky Davao ...
Jay
Rhea Sol Hiballes ...
Amay (as Rheasol Hiballes)
Rio Locsin ...
Mama Bel
Angel Aquino ...
Anne
Mark Gil
Michael De Mesa ...
Police
Monty Makalino
Christopher De Leon ...
Rocky
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Storyline

Two friends go to Francis' hacienda house set in Victorias to borrow money. Instead of lending them money, Francis proposes a drug deal involving Ecstasy which will earn the two a lot of money. But before they are able to get the drugs, Francis gets a heart attack and dies. Thus, the two look for the Ecstasy all over the house. In the meantime, a parade of characters - Francis' siblings, his pusher, his girlfriend, his GRO's - come into the house and look for Francis. What ensues is a hilarious cat-and-mouse game wherein the two friends hide the body or make him look like he's sleeping while they search for the drugs. Written by Gabriel Fernandez

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Comedy

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4 November 2006 (USA)  »

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Trivia

Based from the play "Diin na si Francis?" (Where is Francis?), written by Gabriel Fernandez. "Francis?" was originally staged as an output of the Being Class of the Negros Summer Workshops in 2003. From a story concept of Peque Gallaga and Fernandez, the actors improvised on the scenes to create a one-act play. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Francis is missing, and so is the emotional impact
7 March 2006 | by (Philippines) – See all my reviews

Until last week, four local movies have been released this year after the Metro Manila Film Fest, and three of them are love stories that seem more of promotional tools for their lead stars than genuine attempts at film-making (granted, I honestly liked "Close to You"), with the exception of the low-budget "Mga Batang Bangketa," which was obviously doomed even before it hit the theaters. Mario Cornejo's "Big Time" went mainstream sometime in late January, but technically it was released last year during the Cinemalaya Film Festival so it doesn't count. And now, there's a film that begs to differ.

Gabby Fernandez' "Nasaan Si Francis?" is an attempt by local filmmakers to inject variation to an otherwise monotonous local movie scene. It's a story of two men - Boy (Paolo Contis) and Sonny (Rivermaya front man Rico Blanco) - who are desperate for money and turn to drug-dealer Francis (Jeffrey Quizon) for help. Francis is about to give them ecstasy worth fifty thousand pesos to sell, but unfortunately conks out while in the middle of their conversation. Needing money to get his girlfriend (Tanya Garcia) out of a brothel, Boy prods Sonny into searching for that drug all over Francis' house, all the while going to great lengths hiding from people whom Francis is connected, and hiding Francis' body as well. It is based on the Ilonggo play "Diin Na Si Francis?" written by Fernandez himself.

It should be obvious by now that it's a one-joke formula stretched to a feature-length film. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. The thing is, I didn't find the main characters as always as interesting as they should be, more so with the improbability of their schemes, so it's very hard to care about them the way the filmmakers probably wanted us to and the jokes tend to repeat a lot that the film loses steam midway. Fernandez does experiment a lot with the material to keep it alive, employing split screens, animation, and cameras placed in unusual angles, which find their way nicely to the subject. Sadly, style can only say so much.

The special participation of Christopher De Leon is in itself interesting, although the situations he's put in here has mixed results. Sometimes he's funny, but sometimes... what the heck? He really does seem to enjoy what he's doing, though. Ricky Davao, Rita Avila, Angel Aquino, Julia Clarete, Michael De Mesa, and Karl Roy complete the cast but most of them aren't on the screen for too long and don't require much on their part. Save for Roy who's funny as he plays a perpetually sleeping stoner, none has really much to do.

Looking back at the trailers, I think the filmmakers intended for it to go somewhere within the level of last year's "Pinoy Blonde" that when done correctly can be fun to watch. But like that film of Peque Gallaga, it isn't. Both felt distant, which could or couldn't have been the point. I honestly wanted to give "Nasaan Si Francis?" a more positive comment and a higher rating. Its creative approach to the medium and noble intentions to provide freshness to the local film industry is enough to warrant it a shot and there are those willing to suspend their disbelief for the movie's worth. But personally, I think the film's emotional thrust has evaded me just as its title character did those who seek him and there weren't enough laughs to save the movie as a whole.


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