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  1. #21

    Tuhog (2013)

    Director: Veronica Velasco
    Cast: Leo Martinez, Eugene Domingo, Enchong Dee, Jake Cuenca, Empress

    Skylight Films, the indie army of Star Cinema, does their own celebration of the film outfit's 20th year by coming up with a comedy that plays with intertwined fates of three strangers. Written and directed by Veronica Velasco, and starred by Eugene Domingo, Leo Martinez, Enchong Dee, and Jake Cuenca, Tuhog is a take on the connection of me, you, and everyone else you know.

    Due to a highway bus accident, three strangers Tonio (Leo Martinez), Caloy (Enchong Dee), and Fiesta (Eugene Domingo) are literally connected by a piece of steel bar; unfortunately for them, the small hospital where they were directed has only two operating rooms, and before the decision can be made, we get a glimpse of their own lives prior to the said incident. There, we see Tonio, a retired family man, whose aim is to put up a bakery. Fiesta is a cranky female bus conductor who's being haunted by her past, while Caloy is a typical college student whose world revolves with the notion of finally having her long distant girlfriend deflowered.

    On the outside, it's easy to dismiss the definition of the film's title from the main conflict that the film presented. If you're a fan of Grey's Anatomy, you'll have a clear idea of what I'm referring to in the Season 2 episode Into You Like a Train. However, it goes deeper than that. We were then presented that even before the accident, there were already instances where the three characters have intertwined in the past. And I think that's where the movie clearly succeeds - that there were already some puzzle pieces even before the picture was made.

    Veronica Velasco really knows how to connect the story to the audience and vice versa. I like how each of the backstories were tackled, though it's safe to say that Caloy's story was the weakest of the three. Not because it was the lightest, but because it's the one that comes close (but definitely didn't) from being a filler. The most interesting one is hands down the first one with Tonio. It's stories like his that personally strikes the most interest for me because it's a scenario that others can possibly see themselves at. Fiesta's segment is the perfect middle story; it might not be the most original story, but it is successful in what it presented, and the crowd I was with definitely ate all of it up. If anything, the only thing I wasn't particularly fond of was the resolution part as it tends to become preachy, and it seems sort of out of place to what the build up did.

    I'll dedicate a paragraph of my review to say this, because I want them to get the much deserved props, but the visuals in here is really fresh and well thought. The opening credits is one of the best I've seen in local cinema for a long time, and it is talents like such that convinces me that we need more avenue to expose them because the talent is clearly there.

    With three different stories to tackle, a large ensemble is needed, and for the most part, I think all of them were okay. I don't remember anything that strikes as an odd man out. Eugene Domingo was her typical charismatic self, and while most people know her for her comedic skills, her dramatic ones were equally good too. Enchong Dee is the definition of a boy next door and this role plays right up his alley. My favorite though is Leo Martinez, as one who is still in denial of his current state and simply aims for his dream to push through; you'd feel for him and what he's going through. Martinez together with his barkada in the film (Bodjie Pascua, Jon Achaval, Menggie Cobarrubias) is one of the most enjoyable portrayal of friendship I've seen.

    Tuhog is a very competent and inspired take on life's many possibilities and how fate can possibly bring us to see that. It's one that can make you ask questions about yourself despite not getting the answers instantly.

    RATING: 9/10

    Tuhog is now showing in theaters nationwide.

    You can also check other movie reviews here: Official PEx Movie Review Thread

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Great review! Excited to see this one

  3. #23
    Reminds of that Julie Vega movie, natuhog din sya ng steel bar in an accident. Di ko na nakalimutan yun scene na yun kahit batang bata pa ko nun.

    Kung wala si Jake dito baka panoorin ko to dahil hindi common star cinema drama.

  4. #24
    Variety Skewer
    by Philbert Ortiz Dyposted on Thursday, July 18, 2013 in Movie Reviews

    Tuhog, as it turns out, isnít actually about three people who are impaled on the same steel bar. It certainly has that in it, but most of the movie is spent with these characters living wholly separate lives, intersecting only in the most casual of ways. That central image, as it happens, is actually more of a handicap to the enjoyment of the film. Tuhog tells three really good stories that have been forcefully skewered by their framing device. The ending leaves a bad taste, but thereís much in here to be admired.

    The movie begins with a bus accident, which results in three people getting impaled on a metal pole. From there, the movie tells the stories of these people, fleshing out the months leading up to the accident. Tonio (Leo Martinez) is retired, and he feels that his family no longer appreciates him. Out of this frustration, he makes the rash decision to follow his lifelong dream of opening a bakery. Fiesta (Eugene Domingo) is a surly bus conductors feared by all the drivers in the company. Her latest driver is Nato (Jake Cuenca), who intrudes into her life and decides to woo her. College student Caloy (Enchong Dee) is in a long-distance relationship with Angel (Empress). The two are virgins, and are raring to have sex with each other, but the distance is putting a strain on both of them.

    So it turns out that the movie is really more of an anthology, and the central gimmick is little more than a framing device. It doesnít really matter that these three are stuck together, their stories largely unaffected by this violent event. In fact, it seems to serve as a bit of a narrative cheat, resolving plotlines that previously werenít anywhere near a proper resolution. The ending feels like completely unearned, the parts simply not fitting together all that well.

    But taken separately, each of these stories offer individual pleasures. The third is the weakest, concerned as it is with little more than the comparatively shallow emotions of an early romance. But given that, it does offer a notable frankness about sex that is often missing from the mainstream. The second story gets into some deep emotional territory, depicting a really complex relationship that feels oddly genuine. And the first story finds ample comedy and drama in its exploration of a manís growing insecurity about his age. Itís all terrifically written, and all the segments are willing to go just a little bit darker and more honest than what we usually get.

    The production is pretty tight as well. Thereís obviously a lot of talent involved, both in front of and behind the camera. The film gets great performances out of all its primary players. Eugene Domingo and Leo Martinez are predictably impressive. But the film also gets a lot out of its younger stars. Jake Cuenca delivers a fairly memorable turn here, as does Enchong Dee. The film really plays to their strengths, and both actors are made to deliver. Director Veronica Velasco exhibits plenty of technical skill as well, her camera often moving gracefully through scenes, lending more energy to the already charged encounters.

    Tuhog could be seen as just three stories without a satisfactory ending; perhaps three discarded ideas for full Star Cinema movies, awkwardly stuck together with a pointless conceit. For all its merits, the film does end up cheating through its resolutions, dropping the ball emotionally as it rushes to its ending. But I find that I canít discount the great talent that went into each of these separate stories. There is some potent stuff in here, a surprising maturity and brutal honesty that gives these stories resonance. The directing is more than solid, and the acting is great across the board. It is hard to love the entire package, but it easy to adore the individual parts. And in the end, the final product is still preferable to much to whatís being put out there.

    My Rating:

  5. #25
    Very good movie ang Tuhog para sa akin. Panoorin niyo!

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Will finally watch it today

  7. #27
    Beat Energy Gap thelonius92's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    I hope you guys can find time to watch Tuhog Nanood ako kahapon and there were only 6 of us inside the theater - me, 4 other people and one daga

    The movie is really good - smart, funny and well-made. I know Kapamilya fantards like me pay a lot of lip service or tend to relax our standards when it comes to praising Star Cinema movies, but this movie really deserves everyone's attention because it dares to take common stories and give them a different spin.

    It is a movie about death that turns out to be life-affirming. An 'indie' idea with major studio gloss. It is proof that 'smart' and 'artsy' can be entertaining and it challenges our notions that somehow 'art' and 'entertainment' can't mix. This movie is able to do that and it proves that we can have the best of both worlds.

    The movie tells us three disparate stories connected (or skewered) together by one morbid, surreal event (I won't give the outline of the plot here for it is best witnessed than described.) This is not an entirely new way of storytelling as it has been utilized before in Hollywood movies (Pulp Fiction, Go etc.) From the opening credits though (probably one of the most creative opening credits in Pinoy cinema) you know that you are not watching a typical formula movie. The script is both smart and funny, insightful but does not take itself too seriously.

    Unlike most indie movies, the production values in Tuhog is glossy. The visuals crisp and vivid, the editing seamless and the music tasteful. I like how the movie is not overly-scored unlike most Star Cinema movies. It is so tastefully scored that when you hear KZ Tandingan's song by the end of the movie it almost seem out of place it jars you. (I like KZ's song, by the way, it just doesn't seem to fit the movie.)

    Unlike most of the reviews that I read, my favorite is actually the first story. I like the simplicity and clarity of the storytelling. It is the least complex of the three (about a retiree who wants to spend the remaining days of his life pursuing his dream) yet it is the most emotionally satisfying. I also like that it pays tribute to the lowly but well-loved pandesal. After watching the movie umuwi ako at bumili ng pandesal. Pinalaman ko ng Lily's peanut butter

    The second act of the movie was a complex relationship story that was brilliantly acted by Eugene Domingo and Jake Cuenca. Nadala ni Eugene Domingo ang acting dito ni Jake that I think he leveled-up. Ngayon ko lang nagustuhan ang acting ni Jake who tends to be OA and 'obvious' with his previous performances.

    The last story will be the most entertaining to most Pinoy movie fans, I think. A commentary on teenage sexual mores, it is the 'most Star Cinema' of all the three. The last story though is anything but old and tired. It is fast-paced, witty and frank. Not your usual pa-cute and safe teenage fare.

    Overall, I think the movie is a triumph. Easily the best Star Cinema release this year. The kind of movie that will benefit from good word of mouth marketing as it does not have the big box office draws as other Star Cinema movies. Sana madami pang manood.

    (4 out of 5 stars)

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Just watched it and all 3 stories were strong however yung ending not that satisfying and medyo abrupt. Na-shortcut yung conclusion and what happened to Fiesta's father? I also didn't like the pulubi, out of place lang sa tone ng movie. Anyway, other than that it's a good movie Gusto ko yung usapan nung barkada ni Tonio. "Ang pagtanda ay hindi para sa mahina ang loob". Actually gustong gusto ko yung eksena na nag uusap lang yung magbabarkada. Fiesta's story was quite emotional especially her scenes with her father, damang dama yung part na yun. Caloy's story on the surface is light but it actually raises an issue about guys and sex. "Ok lang ba na hindi ikaw ang nakauna?". OK ang dialogue dito, hindi awkward at pilit ang paggamit ng salitang "banatan" at "tirahin". Although hindi na nila nilagay yung subplot nung characters nina Rodjun at Eda.

    Anyway, nagandahan ako dun sa pagpasok nung Scared to Death nung mangyayari na yung aksidente, goosebumps! I wished we saw more scenes nung nakatuhog sila, nakulungan ako ng tension/struggle sa bandang dulo kung sino dapat mabuhay. But at least hindi pinilit ang typical happy ending.

    All in all I give it a 9 / 10 as well
    Last edited by forg; Jul 23, 2013 at 10:06 AM.

  9. #29

    not your typical star cinema movie! a must watch film!


  10. #30
    Good quality film.
    Gusto ko yung pagkakaTUHOG ng tatlong storyline.
    And I absolutely LOVED the opening credits

    Although maganda to, sad to say, konti lang nanonood dito samin. Andami pang vacant seats. Word of mouth will definitely help this film.

  11. Jul 20, 2013

  12. #31
    Sana mas marami pang manuod. Ganda ng pagkagawa. Sana todo promote pa.

  13. #32
    This maybe ang good film pero may notions kasi ang pipol na kapag indie medyo boring at offensive dahil sobrang makatotohanan.

  14. #33
    Then I hope kung hindi man mawala eh mabawasan sana yang mga ganyang biases natin towards indie films. Kaysa mastuck tayo sa mga box-office films pero nakakabobo naman.

  15. #34
    Not as good as I've expected. Pero okay naman sya. Mas gusto ko lang talaga yung past films ni Direk Roni.

    But good acting and production value. Okay ang post-prod nito. Hindi mukhang ni-rush.

    Hindi ko din gusto yung pulubi.

  16. #35
    Sana mag-ala Bromance to sa kita, para mga ganitong klaseng movie ang gawin ng Star sa future.

  17. #36
    Bakit kasi sinabay yung pagpapalabas sa Yan tuloy, first day pa lang, may mga pirated dvds na. May nabasa akong tweet na tuhog yung palabas sa bus na sinakyan niya

  18. #37
    solidshowtimer kashmira's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    We watched it nung Thursday sa gateway half full ang movie house. It was a breath of fresh air kind of movie. We were joking before we entered the cinema na baka literal na mtutuhog silang tatlo.we're Ina awe na ganun nga. Sana maka 100 m ito.

  19. #38
    ~Reanimated Kyoko~ Edward_Kyoko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Classy In,SLut Out
    One of a kind movie! Love the uniqueness! Sad to say only few Filipinos would be able to appreciate this i bet

  20. #39
    Ang hot ni Beauty dito.

  21. #40
    Lives of random people got entangled into a story all of a sudden? Diba ganyan din yung Jologs dati?

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