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Lola (2009)

Not Rated | | Drama | 5 May 2010 (France)
Two elderly women bear the consequences of a crime involving their respective grandsons. One is the victim, the other is the suspect. Both weak and poor, they laboriously solicit money in ... See full summary »


Brillante Mendoza (as Brillante Ma. Mendoza)


Linda Casimiro (screenplay)
18 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Anita Linda ... Lola Sepa
Rustica Carpio ... Lola Puring
Tanya Gomez ... Ditas
Jhong Hilario ... Bebong
Ketchup Eusebio ... Mateo
Benjie Filomeno Benjie Filomeno ... Domeng
Bobby Jerome Go Bobby Jerome Go ... Jay Jay
Geraldine Villamil ... Virgie
Nico Nullan Nico Nullan ... Nico
Hope Matriano Hope Matriano ... Linda
Tim Yap Tim Yap ... TV Game Host
Earl Zanorio Earl Zanorio ... Game Show Contestant
Catherine Cornell Catherine Cornell ... Snatcher Victim
Jojit Lorenzo ... Security Guard
Tess Antonio ... Factory Office Secretary


Two elderly women bear the consequences of a crime involving their respective grandsons. One is the victim, the other is the suspect. Both weak and poor, they laboriously solicit money in the midst of a storm, one for the victim's burial, the other for the suspect's bail bond. Written by Pusan International Film Festival

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Official Sites:

Official site [France]


France | Philippines


Filipino | Tagalog

Release Date:

5 May 2010 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Babcia See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital


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User Reviews


After the infamy that accompanied Mendoza's "Kinatay" / "Butchered" at the 2009 Cannes film festival, I decided to see what all the fuss was about and catch his latest film Lola.

This is a social realist film that's attempting to capture something about modern Philippine city life in Manila. What we're shown here is commoditised life, every waking moment revolves around money and possessions. The sound design in the film is really well done, and that's one of the few things that the critics agreed upon about Kinatay as well. The movie opens during a horrible wind where a haggard grandmother goes to light a candle at the sight of her nephew's murder, he was apparently stabbed to death for his mobile phone, which the film implies happens quite a lot. It appears that in the Philippines there needs to be a complainant for a murder case to be tried, which seems quite barbaric by Western standards, where no-one needs to complain.

Whilst grandmother Sepa struggles to keep her family together and starts pawning possessions to keep an invalid family member alive, grandmother Carpin struggles to raise enough money to pay off Sepa and keep her son Mateo Burgos out of prison. It appears to be a perfectly acceptable solution in Phillipines society. In the background we see a game show on TV which is called "credit or debit". Everything is about money. Life seems very oppressive, Sepa travels on foot in torrential rain and gale-force winds, and has to cope with her arthritis, how she keeps going at her age is hard to know. Carpin has similar afflictions, has to make money by illegal street trading and stealing from customers as well as begging off of relatives.

So the film is quite bleak, the densely inhabited urban maze features fascist graffiti, street kids wearing t-shirts with logos such as "ALIEN SEX FRIENDS", and there are bag snatchers everywhere. There is one ray of light in the film though, at a family gathering, it is noticed that some fish are swimming in the water underneath the house, suddenly there are frenzied attempts to catch as many as possible, and suddenly everyone is helping each other and there is joy. It's a phenomenon that Dickens referred to as the gaiety of the slums, in A Tale Of Two Cities he described a barrel of wine cracking and gushing down the street, the poor scramble around the floor looking for even the tiniest trickle, filling whatever container possible, laughing and joking.

It's a testament to suffering, and I think a story worth telling, though who knows what good it will do.

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