7.6/10
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Metro Manila (2013)

Not Rated | | Action, Crime, Drama | 20 September 2013 (UK)
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1:44 | Trailer
Seeking a brighter future in megacity Manila, Oscar Ramirez and his family flee their impoverished life in the rice fields of the northern Philippines. But the sweltering capital's bustling... See full summary »

Director:

Sean Ellis

Writers:

Sean Ellis (screenplay), Frank E. Flowers (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 9 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jake Macapagal ... Oscar Ramirez
John Arcilla ... Douglas Ong
Althea Vega ... Mai Ramirez
Erin Panlilio Erin Panlilio ... Angel Ramirez
Iasha Aceio Iasha Aceio ... Baby Ramirez
Mailes Kanapi ... Charlie (as Angelina Kanapi)
JM Rodriguez JM Rodriguez ... Alfred Santos
Ana Abad Santos ... Dora Ong
Moises Magisa Moises Magisa ... Buddha (as Moises Mag Isa)
Reuben Uy ... JJ
Mario Visto Mario Visto ... Banaue Rice Traders
Daniel Magisa Daniel Magisa ... Conman #1 (as Danny Mag Isa)
Ray Aragon Ray Aragon ... Conman #2
Jervie Cajarop Jervie Cajarop ... Police Officer
Jhay Castillo Jhay Castillo ... Slum Housing Officer
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Storyline

Seeking a brighter future in megacity Manila, Oscar Ramirez and his family flee their impoverished life in the rice fields of the northern Philippines. But the sweltering capital's bustling intensity quickly overwhelms them, and they fall prey to the rampant manipulations of its hardened locals. Oscar Ramirez catches a lucky break when he's offered steady work for an armored truck company and gregarious senior officer Ong takes him under his wing. Soon, though, the reality of his work's mortality rate and the murky motives of his new partner force Oscar to confront the perils he faces in his new job and life. The movie portrays how far a man can go for his family.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Desperate men take desperate measures.

Genres:

Action | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Philippines

Language:

Tagalog

Release Date:

20 September 2013 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Metrópole Manila See more »

Filming Locations:

Philippines See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£250,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Chocolate Frog Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Metro Manila returned to 12 UK cinemas on 28th November 2013 for a one off screening to raise money for the victims of typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda that had hit the Philippines and killed close to 6000 people. 12 screens were donated by VUE cinemas and raised a total of £3540 for the DEC charity. Its British director, Sean Ellis said: "The people of the Philippines were tremendously supportive during the making of Metro Manila, and it's only right that we should now use the film to raise money to help the victims of this terrible disaster." See more »

Goofs

The license plate of Oscar and Ong's security truck keeps changing throughout the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Anthropoid Press Conference (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Ebben... Ne andro lontana
Performed by Maria Callas
Performed by The Philharmonia Orchestra
Conducted by Tullio Serafin
Courtesy of EMI Records Limited
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Keep with this one...it gets better as it progresses.
27 March 2014 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Metro Manila is not a film for everyone. It's an incredibly tough movie to watch at times and your heart really goes out to the leading characters in the movie. However, if you can make it through all the misery, you'll find that the script is amazingly well written and intelligent.

The film begins with Oscar Ramirez receiving only a pittance for their hard work as rice farmers. It's so little that they see they have only one choice—to travel to the big city to look for work. However, this nice family is constantly screwed during the course of the film—to the point where you wonder if it can get any worse. Their rent money is stolen—and they have no food for themselves or their two small children. Out of desperation, the wife gets a degrading job working in a sleazy bar as a 'hostess'—though she's not much better than a prostitute. Then the husband works all day only to be given a couple sandwiches in payment! Now they have no place to live, practically no food and they are desperate. Only when the man gets a job working as an armored car worker do things start to look up for them. Now, they can live in a nicer and safer home and they finally feel happy. But, based on how things have gone so far, I kept expecting the other shoe to fall. And, fall it did---but in such a creative way that it made the film worthwhile. What exactly happens to these poor people? Well I certainly won't spoil it by telling! However, the ending really took me by surprise—and I love to be surprised.

This movie has a lot going for it. A great reason to watch it is to see just how much of the world lives. This film doesn't give a beautiful look at Manila but shows a desperate town where it's more dog eat dog than anything else. How the family tries to hold on is what makes the film truly exciting to watch. But, as I already said, the film is tough viewing at times. It certainly is NOT a feel-good film and it takes a lot of patience and perseverance to see it through to the end. But it IS worth it. It also features some excellent natural acting and it is a well made production and makes me want to see more from these folks.


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