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Ma' Rosa (2016)

Not Rated | | Drama | 6 July 2016 (Philippines)
1:41 | Trailer
Ma' Rosa has four children. She owns a small convenience store in a poor neighborhood of Manila where everybody likes her. To make ends meet, Rosa and her husband, Nestor, resell small ... See full summary »


Brillante Mendoza


Troy Espiritu
2 wins & 33 nominations. See more awards »



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Credited cast:
Jaclyn Jose ... Rosa
Julio Diaz ... Nestor
Baron Geisler ... Sumpay
Jomari Angeles ... Erwin
Neil Ryan Sese ... Olivarez
Mercedes Cabral ... Linda
Andi Eigenmann ... Raquel
Mark Anthony Fernandez ... Castor
Felix Roco ... Jackson
Mon Confiado ... Sanchez
Maria Isabel Lopez ... Tilde
Ruby Ruiz ... Elvie
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mark Dionisio ... SPO1 Alvarez
John Paul Duray ... PO1 Mercado
Tony Fabian Tony Fabian ... Grocery Shopper


Ma' Rosa has four children. She owns a small convenience store in a poor neighborhood of Manila where everybody likes her. To make ends meet, Rosa and her husband, Nestor, resell small amounts of narcotics on the side. One day, they get arrested. Rosa and her children are ready to do anything to buy her freedom from the corrupt police. Written by anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Not Rated | See all certifications »





Filipino | Tagalog

Release Date:

6 July 2016 (Philippines) See more »

Also Known As:

Mama Rosa See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Centerstage Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Mendoza noted that the concept of corruption which is a subject of the film appeals to a worldwide audience since he says that corruption is happening in many different countries on a different scale. See more »


Spin-off Amo (2017) See more »

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User Reviews

Brillante takes a bold statement
11 April 2018 | by plsletitrainSee all my reviews

Brillante Ma Mendoza is usually a hit or miss for me. He had a lot of misses, but he's got some hits for me too. This one is for me one of his strong films, if not the strongest. This film got the attention of the Cannes. And even if I'm not big on awards, I think this film deserves whatever recognition it got.

I know I've had enough with the "Look at us, oh we're so poor and we live in hell" pity party that is the common subject of most indie Filipino films. But I don't know why I loved this. Probably because it didn't look like a movie at all. It was so real and reflective of the state of the Philippines that it almost looked like a documentary.

Brillante engaged the talents of veteran Filipino actors here. The lead actress, Jacklyn Jose, is already a no-brainer. She could pull off any role, whether a protagonist, an antagonist, or even a plain bit player and she'll still steal the show. I was particularly impressed with her here, with no make-up and "acting" that looked so natural it never felt like she was just acting at all. There's a recognizable supporting cast(Julio Diaz, Mon Confiado, Mark Anthony Fernandez, Baron Geisler, Andi Eigenmann, Maria Isabel Lopez, and Allan Paule whose number of gay roles in indie films I've lost count already, and some others) that gives life to the bleak situation being portrayed.

Brillante takes a bold statement here, but not controversial. Just congruent with reality. He centered on the controversial drug war, but not on the most publicized extra-judicial killings. He focused on the other side of the narcotic trade that's been in the circles for so long but was never exposed.

Rosa (Jacklyn Jose) is your typical slum family matriarch. Along with her husband, Nestor (Julio Diaz), they engage in small-time sale of illegal drugs. They got arrested after their house was raided and they were found in possession of the drugs. Instead of undergoing standard booking procedures at the precinct, they were brought to a separate backdoor office where they were made to bargain for their liberty. The policemen, seeing that they could make use of a bigger fish than the ones they caught, made them confess of their supplier. But despite doing so, they were still asked for money in exchange for their freedom. Same thing happened with their supplier. Their 3 children did all ways to raise the money. Giving up their goods, their body, their pride.

Over-all I'd say this is a statement film. I commend Brillante for outing the abuses and corrupt practices of rogue policemen in the country. There are no long shots of nothing here, pure statements, pure reality.

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