Saturday, February 23, 2013

Darry dela Cruz's Malasado - Watered Down and Overeasy

Levi (AR de Castro) and Pete (Zander Cruz) are close friends. They’re supportive of each other’s needs. They even share a single bed in an apartment. Pete is particularly vulnerable. He’s desperately in love with Lorie (Adriana Gomez), the girl next door. He claims he’d do “anything” for the girl. But what he doesn't know is that his friend Levi and Lorie are already a couple. Levi is particularly disconcerted with the situation. But there’s more to this choleric situation than meets the eye. Levi is in fact harboring affection for Pete. Aren't we confused yet? J And he couldn't control this cantankerous proclivity.

One night, while Pete is heavily inebriated and stuporous, Levi gets the chance to have his way with Pete’s considerable bulges. As his friend sleeps, Levi’s hands – and tongue - wander where they shouldn't  Pete thought this was just a vivid wet dream involving Lorie. Meanwhile, Levi is remorseful – and drawn to his friend more than ever. After all, you can’t get enough of a good thing, debah?

Pete eventually learns of his friend’s attraction for him. As a favor to the accommodating Lorie, Pete agrees for a “romp on the hay” with friend Levi. This would put him in good stead with the schemy Lorie, right? But situation turns sour when Pete couldn't deal with what happened. One night, he smothers Levi in his sleep. What happens to lovestruck Levi? Would love or justice prevail?

Adriana Gomez
Director Darry dela Cruz’sMalasado” presents ferociously anatomosing emotional entanglements which are tests of patience and sanity. But we do realize what he’s driving at. He desperately needs to show his male protagonists in various couplings. Come hell or high water, these protagonists need to get it on. Unfortunately, Director Dela Cruz and his scriptwriter Kenneth Montero are too inept for logical exposition. In fact, a simple story becomes too big a hurdle for this team (which includes Cleo Paglinawan). The skill and technical know-how are blatantly wanting so we experience some of the driest scenography ever to grace the silver screen.

To accentuate tension, Dela Cruz gets his actors to either smoke endlessly over dissonant music – or he gets them drunk! Though canned music is pretty much avoided, a monotonous piano strain is employed instead, but the melodic tone isn't even compatible with most of the scenes being played. The setting is mostly confined to interiors: a swimming pool, a shower room, and a couple of nondescript exterior shots. In short, Dela Cruz’s follow through with Moron Cinema is inspiring, I ought to freight him some trophies for consistency. Yes, honey, we are scraping the bottom here.

Ike Sadiasa and Jerome Pineda appear as the exceedingly heedful neighbors whose mindfulness oversteps boundaries. One of the challenges to hurdle here is how to get through its inaudible sound. The lines are hardly intelligible because of a noisy room tone and the choppy sound. Parang poor signal, 'kuya. What’s worse is how unaffectingly robotic these actors are. There is not a single valid emotion in all of its short running time. Dela Cruz is particularly fond of close ups and panning shots of gargantuan crotches. In fact, while Zander and AR sleep with nothing but "very" tight and "very" skimpy briefs, it suddenly feels like a Bulging Briefs Contest. It made me blush! These shots are oft repeated ad nauseam! I might as well infer that Dela Cruz is taking a masteral thesis on “Protuberant Appendageal Objects”. I could swear there were restless hamsters underneath their bikini briefs. Peksman. Very interesting, debah?

The film had its commercial run September 5th of 2012 so it passed by without people realizing it was even showing. That, to me, is good news. We all should realize which flicks deserve patronage, and which ones don't. 


Curiously, fair skinned Zander and AR possess agnate features, they might as well be brothers. It took me a while to differentiate these two noobs, adding to the difficulty of understanding what exactly is going on in Dela Cruz’s muddled plot ministrations. But then why look for plot? This isn't exactly high art. It isn't even medium art. And saying that it is art in its lowest embodiment bestows it the privilege of suggesting low-levels of shrewd artistry. There’s nothing of that here. If anything, it’s artistry is akin to its title: “Malasado” – half-baked, over easy, amateur, true to form. What we do have is an incipient conceit of how straight men behave if they were homosexuals. That is a huge "if". All gibberish illusion.  

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