Sunday, September 15, 2013

IMORTAL (1989)

"Wala akong kinalaman sa pinagtatalunan n'yo, nakikiusap ako Ka Anton, Ka Anton nagmamakaawa ako sa'yo, napasangkot lang ako, hindi na ako isa sa kanila...nang hinarang mo kami nakisabay lang ako sa kanila, papauwi na ako noon, lalabas na ako...Ka Anton, nakikiusap ako, may naghihintay sa akin...Ayoko rito!"

Basic Information: Direction: Eddie Garcia; Story: Orlando Nadres; Cast: Vilma Santos, Christopher De Leon, Tommy Abuel, Ricky Davao, Gelli De Belen, Cherie Gil, Jacklyn Jose, Liza Lorena, Richard Reynoso, Roi Vinzon; Executive producer: Vic del Rosario Jr.; Original Music: George Canseco; Cinematography: Joe Batac Jr.; Film Editing: Ike Jarlego Jr.; Production Design: Elmer Manapur; Theme Songs: “Imortal” performed by Basil Valdez

Plot Description: The first time they laid eyes on each other, they knew from that very moment that they were destined to be together. But their love was not meant to be consummated instantly-they had to wait. But their waiting spanned not just year but lifetimes. The time comes that they meet again. But now, they must break the walls that have for so long kept them apart. They must fight for their love because now is their last chance. - Viva

It is a three-generation story with the six principal characters in different generations played by Christopher De Leon and Vilma Santos. The son of Christopher and the daughter of Vilma are baptized one after the other since both belong to the same town. The only difference is that Christopher's family is rich and Vilma belongs to a middle-class family. When the two children grow up, they fall in love with each other but parental objections on the part of Christopher's family put an end to their plans. Christopher, the son, then became a doctor, and Vilma, the daughter, becomes a nun. But he convinces her to go out of the convent and she was about to tell him so when she and other sisters are kidnapped by the NPAs. Christopher then married Cherie Gil who's already pregnant by him, and when Vilma is rescued, she is taken cared of by Ricky Davao, mayor of the town were she is taken. Vilma then marries Ricky but she left him and eventually became a woman of pleasure. She became pregnant but does not know who the father is. Christopher and Cherie are the parents of a son and Vilma gives birth to a daughter. Eventually, the third generation of Christopher and Vilma, find out they are not brother and sister, fall in love and are married. - ABS-CBN (READ MORE)

Film Achievement: FAMAS: Best Director – Eddie Garcia, Best Story – Orlando Nadres, Best Actor Nomination – Christopher De Leon, Best Picture Nomination; Gawad Urian: Best Actor Nomination – Christopher De Leon; Metro Manila Film Festival: Best Actress – Vilma Santos, Best Actor – Christopher De Leon, Best Supporting Actress – Cherrie Gil, Best Story & Screenplay – Orlando Nadres, Best Editing – Ike Jarlego Jr, Best Production Design - Elmer Manapul, Best Musica Score – George Canseco, Best Film; Gawad Urian Best Actor Nomination – Christopher De Leon

Film Reviews: We saw the movie “Imortal'' starring Vilma Santos and Christopher de Leon, and directed by Eddie Garcia, which won most of the awards in the last Metro-Manila Festival. It was awful. People who make such movies, and those who hand out awards to them, thoroughly deserve each other. In its asinine plot, “Imortal” tells of the immortal love between two siblings with a common father -- a doctor Christopher de Leon and Vilma Santos who becomes a nun, wife of an impotent husband, adulteress and a whore. They never make it because movie censor Manoling Morato would have gotten mad, but in the next generation, the daughter of the whore with foreigner (without AIDS, we hope) -- also played by a younger Vilma Santos -- marries the son of the doctor, played by a young Christopher de Leon, in a psychedelic wedding in the year 2016 AD. In the year 2016, youngsters Vilma (with brown skin and blue eyes) and Boyet are singing Happy Birthday to the father Old Christopher, a senile old man in a wheel chair. “Happy Birthday, Papa,” says Vilma as she kisses him on the cheek; he does not respond so she panics: “Papa... Papa... PAPA!” He does not answer because he is dead. According to the movie script, the father Christopher was born in 1954, which makes him in 2016 only 62 years of age -- much younger than Director Eddie Garcia or even Dolphy, hardly an age to be senile and dying.

There are other laughable scenes. Vilma says, “My husband is (music rises ominously) -- my husband is (music again) IMPOTENT (music rises to a climax)!” You’d think the husband just contracted the AIDS virus or got castrated by Sparrow units! Shucks, I know several husbands who just can't do it anymore, and I hear no heavy music when their wives complain. As a matter of fact, wives prefer their husbands to be impotent, rather than be sexually active with other women. Another terrible scene. The car ridden by Christopher and wife Cherie Gil falls off a cliff. Cherie who is pregnant is mortally wounded and dies. And Christopher looks at his dead wife, and holds aloft a new born baby complete with umbilical cord. This is absurd without a caesarian operation by a doctor. The worst scene is when Christopher digs up the corpse of Vilma at the cemetery, amidst thunder, lightning, wind and rain, and embraces her passionately, while she exhibits no rigor mortis, and apparently no smell of formalin. You don’t find this kind of idiocy in a television commercial. Most of my grandchildren, including Angeli who is only four months of age, enjoy commercials more than dramas.

Some TV commercials can tell the story vividly, memorably, with impact in 30 seconds, better than two hours of unmitigated nincompoopery in filmed dramas. A simple love story is telescoped into a heartwarming half a minute of the Lizl Lebron commercial for San Miguel -- boy meets girl against the parents’ wishes, in the tennis court, Fort Santiago in the rain, in the balcony -- and ends as he gives her a engagement ring. Actresses with a roomful of acting awards can never match the birth of love and passion in the virginal innocence of this young girl. The same love story is retold in the Ligaw ad of Jollibee chronicling the Filipino traditional courtship -- the chaperoned visit, permission to take the girl out for a snack, “Sigurado ka bang sa Jollibee?” the first tentative holding of hands, and the sudden appearance of papa -- a slice of true life experience every young person can identify with, more than the bizarre events of “Imortal.” Movies are a director’s medium, the stage is an actor’s medium, a TV commercial is the medium of the advertiser who pays for the ad. The advertiser conducts enough studies to justify the expenditure in a logical way: product and consumer research to determine the most compelling reason to buy the product; careful attention to story boards, makeup, hair style, with no waste, irrelevances or digressions -- long before shooting even starts.

A commercial of 30 seconds takes from P800,000 to P2 million to produce or as much as P67,000 per second. A movie of two hours or 9,600 seconds may take P5 million to produce, or P520 per second. A commercial costs as 128 times as much as a movie. Del Monte’s Spaghetti Sauce’s Godfather ad, mechado sauce’s Candida ad, and ketchup’s Family Dinner ad; the San Miguel series with Fernando Poe Jr., Tawa Marcelo and Freddie Aguilar; Jollibee’s Lola ad; and the Sarsi ad -- are technical and artistic masterpieces. The Hope cigarette ads are colonial, sexist and insulting to the intelligence, as are those of Vos Brandy, White Castle Whisky and Old Captain Rum. But even the worst TV ad is better than “Imortal.” - Hilarion M. Henares Jr. (READ MORE)

Watching Imortal on ABS-CBN was purely out curiosity. At first I thought it was a remake of the old Vilma Santos-Christopher De Leon movie entitled Imortal. Gosh. Then only to find out the teleserye is about feuding wolves and vampires. You don’t have to be Twilight fan to realize how Twilight-y the plot is not even halfway into the first episode. And like any other Pinoy plot, the story line is just so darn predictable! The first episode isn’t over yet but you already know how it’s going to end. Why is it always like that? Can’t the writers think of new twists and be creative for once? (I’m already in my late 30s and they’ve been at it since I was in grade school.) Or is it that unpredictable twists don’t sell to the masses? Most probably! Either way, don’t blame me for being ‘unpatriotic’ because I get more satisfaction watching reruns of good old foreign films. - Gloria Daragang (READ MORE)

"...Jacklyn is cast with Vilma Santos and Christopher De Leon in Viva's "Immortal." This is Vilma and Christopher's first film together after several years of making movies separately. Although Jacklyn is cast in a supporting role, she is excited in doing the dramatic opus since it is a Vilma starrer. Jacklyn is vocal to admit that she is an avid fan of Vilma. This is the second time she co-stars with her favorite idol. The first one was on a TV dramatic special "Lamat sa Kristal," which was produced by Vilma herself. Besides, Jacklyn is also happy to note that she will be directed by one of her favorite directors, Eddie Garcia..." - Eddie O. Liboon (READ MORE)

"Dahil Father’s Day ngayon, nais nating bigyan ng magandang tribute ang nakilala nang ama ng maraming­ artista ng iba’t ibang henerasyon na si Eddie Garcia. Hindi lang mahusay na bida at kontrabida si Eddie kundi mahusay rin siya bilang isang film director. Taong 1961 nang idirek ni Eddie ang kanyang unang pelikula titled “Karugtong Ng Kahapon” kunsaan bida sina Mario Montenegro, Rita Gomez, Ric Rodrigo at Marlene Dauden. Higit na 36 movies pa ang dinirek ni Eddie na iba-iba ang tema...Imortal (1989), Ito ang pinakamalaking cast na dinirek ni Eddie at pinagbidahan ito nina Vilma Santos at Christopher de Leon. Kasama rin sina Ricky Davao, Cherie Gil, Jaclyn Jose, Tommy Abuel, Liza Lorena at marami pang iba. Kuwento ito ng walang kamata­yan na pag-iibigan nila Nic at Sandra na nabuhay at namatay sa iba’t ibang katauhan sa mga nagdaang taon. Hanggang sa nagkasama na rin sila at mag-isang dibdib. Isa ito sa official entries sa 1989 Metro Manila Film Festival at napanalunan nito ang 11 awards including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Actor at Best Supporting Actress for Cherie Gil. Nanalo rin si Eddie bilang Best Director sa FAMAS..." - Ruel Mendoza, Abante, 15 June 2019 (READ MORE)


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