Bwakaw

Italian Premiere

Bwakaw 

The Philippines, 2012, 111’, Tagalog with English
Directed by: Jun Robles Lana
Script: Jun Robles Lana
Photography (color): Carlo Mendoza
Editing: Lawrence Ang
Art Direction: Rolando Carino
Music: Jema Pamintuan
Producers: Tonee Acejo, Ramel David, Perci Intalan, Jun Lana, Ferdy Lapuz, Antonio Tuviera
Cast: Eddie Garcia (Rene, the old man), Princess (Bwakaw, the dog), Rez Cortez (Sol, the tricycle driver), Bibeth Orteza (Rose), Joey Paras (Tracy), Allan Paule (Berting), Beverley Salviejo (Nitang), Soxy Topacio (Zaldy), Luz Valdez (Minda), Gardo Versoza (Father Eddie), Soliman Cruz (Funeral home manager), Ronaldo Bertubin (Minda’s nephew)

Date of First Release in Territory: July 21st, 2012 

 

A dog’s life… 
One of the finest movies about old age and its contradictions, Bwakaw is also one of the best by director Jun Robles Lana and his main actor, Eddie Garcia (who was 82 at the time). It won many awards at the Cinemalaya Festival in 2012, and was shown in several festivals abroad.
 
The film, very nicely crafted, and beautifully photographed (by Carlo Mendoza), is about a senior, Rene (Eddie Garcia), living in the province (it’s shot in Dolores town, in Quezon province), and still working at the local post office, although he is already retired. He looks like a grumpy old man, whose only real love is his (female) dog Bwakaw (Princess, the real star of the film, along with Eddie…). As the story unfolds, we find out about all the people revolving around Rene, like the local bakla (gay) barber Zaldy (Soxie Topacio) and his assistant, who thinks she looks luke Beyoncé (!), or Minda (Luz Valdez) who wants to see his “Santo Entierro”, a statue of the Christ which is supposed to grow miraculously in size with time… 

And we also find out about Rene’s (not so) “secret” sexual tendencies, which culminate in his ambiguous relationship with the rough, basic  tricycle driver Sol (Rez Cortez, a former bold actor), who is the exact opposite of Rene, but still attract him, until a decisive night of drinking where something might have happened…We also discover that Rene had in his youth a “fiancee”, Alicia (Armida Siguion Reyna, the mother of director Carlos Siguion Reyna) who is now in a retirement home, but does not recognize him, as she has Alzheimer… Meanwhile, Rene has to take the coffin he ordered to his house, because the funeral parlor is closing down, and tries to sleep in it, and Bwakaw gets sick, with an unexpected twist… 

Every scene of this highly human tale, intricately told, is a surprise, full of human contradictions and humor (with so many funny details) and the film is like a kaleidoscope of different feelings, as we discover Rene’s true personality. Eddie Garcia’s main performance is just superb, and the whole film tells us about what is  really important in Filipino life: human feelings, sex life, religion…

Bwakaw is a real gem of a dog’s life – and death. No barking…

 

 

Jun Robles Lana

Jun Robles Lana was born on October 10, 1972, in Makati city (Metro Manila). He is a graduate of the University of Santo Tomas. His debut screenplay, In the Navel of the Sea, was directed by his mentor, famous director Marilou Diaz-Abaya. He also scripted the films for Diaz-Abaya, such as Jose Rizal and Muro Ami, and worked for Regal Films. Since then, he has worked both in mainstream and indie films, and for a number of television dramas and teleserye (TV series), with his partner, producer and director Perci Intalan. He is also a creative director of the drama department for the GMA TV network. 

SELECTED FILMOGRAPHY

2006 – Gigil
2008 – Roxxxanne 
2011 – Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow
2012 – Bwakaw 
2013 – Barber’s Tales
2016 – Die Beautiful 
2018 – Ang Dalawang Mrs. Reyes
2019 – The Panti Sisters
2020 – Especially for Your Love
2021 – Big Night

 

Max Tessier
Film director: Jun Robles LANA
Year: 2012
Running time: 110'
Country: The Philippines
01/07 - 9:00 AM
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