Temptation Island and the People Responsible for its Potential for Greatness/Ruin

I live for queer, silly pieces of entertainment such as Temptation Island. I’m also a Chris Martinez fan and I truly like his film things. I don’t care what he makes; as long as it’s sold in the mall, I will buy ticket and swallow it up like a good boy. As much as I want to analyze to death the New Chris Martinez Movie, I have very little opinion of it, but I will never pass up an opportunity to talk about Marian Rivera, in however nice a light I have to put her in, or Aljur Abrenica’s existence in the world of showbiz.

  1. Heart Evangelista –She was supposed to play Lovi Poe’s character, which, after seeing this, neither intrigues nor annoys me. Every time Heart is on screen, I first admire her face then proceed at guffawing inside myself about superstarmarian’s imaginary beef with her, which for me is so much more exciting and funnier than anything she does here, except for that fleeting moment in the fight scene, which isn’t memorable because of her. Heart is very pretty but she’s incapable of being remarkable. Who should have taken her place is Angelica Panganiban.
  2. Solenn Heusaff – Model-turned-actors really tell you about the state of the local showbiz scene. It’s for whoever’s responsible for these celebrity-imports’ casting in wrong roles that we keep hearing awkward foreigner accent spoken by mannequins in average Pedro roles.
  3. Marian Rivera – is one of the most irritating personalities in existence today. I find her really, really annoying, but her talent is undeniable. She’s one of the better performers here but that’s mostly because she’s playing the Chris Martinez Temptation Island remake version of herself so there was no way she’s going to be terrible. She was very much in character. I experience really profound internal conflict as I laugh at her performance, and the ability to elicit laughter when doing comedy is very good indication of effective, even great acting. She puts her inner palengkera to good use. But it’s best to appreciate her loud persona with caution since we don’t want to give her the notion that it’s a good idea to be loud all the time.
  4. Tom Rodriguez – looks great in red briefs. He should have stayed in them for the duration of the film so all of us stay happy. But this is a not-that-raunchy sort of sexy comedy and SM won’t screen R-rated films with guys perpetually in red briefs in them, blah, blah, blah.
  5. Aljur Abrenica – is such a terrible actor. Dear GMA 7, why do you keep casting him in very prominent roles? His character is supposed to be an intellectual-dork-hunk who occasionally speaks English, the kind that Sam Milby can do in his sleep. This is a silly movie about silliness but Aljur’s character doesn’t make any sense. I know that this is based from a campy movie and it’s supposed to be super silly so I’m not sure if they cast him because he does great job as an englishero-sosyal person precisely because he can’t do a credible englishero-sosyal and that’s supposed to be the joke and I just didn’t get it, or he’s cast in the role because GMA Films produced the film and he has to meet a quota before they (hopefully) kick him out of their talent pool. But this being a remake of an ‘unintentionally funny’ film, every joke pulled is intentional and obvious. Perhaps, the performance is unintentionally genius and the joke is on us, and Aljur knew that the essence of his character is in the inside-jokey nature of the film. But who are we kidding. Which is it, GMA? Either way, I still think he is a lousy actor. Even in TV, he is as expressionless and as personality-free as a statue. Aljur Abrenica just can’t make anything out of that no talent face and voice of his. It’s for people like Aljur that theatre people think they’re so oppressed by the local entertainment system, whatever that is. ‘If untalented people like Aljur Abrenica are getting prestigious Tuna product endorsement deals, how come we are still being paid in cat food?
  6. Rufa Mae Quinto – could have been replaced by Eugene Domingo in my version of the movie, but she’s fine. She was very much in her Rufa Mae self in a yaya role to Lovi Poe’s bitch, doing Rufa Maey things that are weird and funny. Whatever she does and says is funny. She’s a happy-making actress through and through. She should stretch her talent some more, though, and play a smaller-boobed bobita bombshell in her next film or do a less shrill vixen, maybe. The four girls awarding her with an imaginary Miss Manila Sunshine crown is one of the truest and charming moments of the film. She almost owned the movie. Rufa Mae’s eyebrows or boobs convey more feelings than the whole of Aljur Abrenica.
  7. Lovi Poe – could have been replaced with Alessandra De Rossi in my version of the movie, but I still sort of adored her among all girls. I don’t know what it is in her acting but something about her prompted me to make a mental note to pursue her other stuff. You know how when you’re gay and you meet a girl and you automatically develop a fondness for her because she seems like she’d make a good hag, and you want to become really good friends with her, in probably the same way that a straight guy would want to bang the exact same girl? Lovi Poe exudes that aura so much.
  8. Mikael Daez – plays up the ‘Joswa’ joke one time too many and relied on that throughout. He is able to put on a really intense expression when ordered to do so but he doesn’t show briefs, not even a garter-glimpse, so you have to look at his Albrenica-like depth.
  9. John Lapuz – wishes to tell every gay actor in the Philippine film industry to go fuck themselves because for as long as he’s working (and work hard he does), no minor gay role will be filled by anyone else except him. That said, he does good work here, doing John Lapuzy stuff to his John Lapuzy character which you know Vice Ganda is shaking his fist in frustration, wishing the role had been his. All nastiness aside, I think John Lapuz, if given the opportunity to stretch, will stretch.  He was terrific in Here Comes the Bride. He is an exciting actor; you’ll never know when he’s going to turn up a great performance and when he’s going to do his typical hysterical parlorista schtick.
  10. Big Film Studio people. In a perfect world, our local film industry will not depend on the dubious studio system. Cristy Fermin says it best: ‘Maliit lang ang industriya’, which is why depending on a studio’s exclusive and restrictive pool of talents is such a recipe for ugly movie-making with major participation of such ‘talents’ such as Aljur Abrenica. If our film people had to depend less in the Kapuso/Kapamailya actors, the local film world will be a much better place.

7 thoughts on “Temptation Island and the People Responsible for its Potential for Greatness/Ruin

  1. I’d buy Aljur Abrenica’s hotdog cause it’s healthy but probably not his album or DVD.

    I also don’t believe we have a limited pool of good actors. It’s just showbiz being showbiz. I’m curious though. If you were the Big Film Studio Person, who would be your four girls and three guys? The why is optional. 🙂

    (BTW, I downloaded and watched 100 eons ago because of your review. Similarly, I think I’ll just watch the original film.)


  2. Re Aljur Abrenica: I don’t think GMA (or, ABS-CBN for that matter) is capable of going all meta on us.

    At, masama bang ikinakahiya kong taga-Cavite si Marian Rivera? Heh.

    Chris Martinez wrote one of the Cinemalaya entries this year, Ang Babae sa Septic Tank, with Eugene Domingo to boot.


  3. Aljur is awful. I was trapped on a provincial bus with “Nandito Ako, Nagmamahal sa ‘Yo” playing one time, I didn’t know if I wanted to kill him or myself more. Still, the rest of the movie sounds like fun 🙂


  4. Happy-making, Ruffa Maey, John Lapuzy. Your words. Unexpected, somehow un-original to a degree, and yet so very appropriate. You know how I adore the right word in the right context. You nailed it.

    Now as far as the review itself goes, I am thoroughly, no, decidedly surprised that you had so much to say about the local film industry. I mean, the current status and stars of the local film industry. The comparisons and the suggestions said it all. It really isn’t my shotglass of vodka, but thanks for the insight.


  5. manech, i wouldn’t buy anything aljur-related (except this) but now that you’ve mentioned the album, i’m thinking maybe we shouldn’t be too harsh on him since it’s obvious he’s being milked for the talent he doesn’t have. that is harsh.

    if i were big studio person: solenn = dimples romana, because she’s tall and i’m sure she can do bitchy + mas bagay; lovi poe = alessandra de rossi, though lovi was fine; marian rivera = angelica; heart e = lovi poe na lang. i really liked her.

    3 guys: mikael = kristofer king; tom rod = josh ivan morales; aljur = PAOLO CONTIS 😀

    aris, i agree, maybe they really needed someone popular. re marian, i’m secretly fascinated with her, i think. hehe closet fan na yata ako.

    ajeet, i saw a bubble gang skit where he had to do a gay son bit with michael v and paolo contis, the one where they had to speak gay and even with such rich, fantastic material, he fails!

    momel, i can’t think of anything else. rufa mae is really a happy person to look at, no matter what and where you are. i don’t really watch a lot of local films but every time i do, i always feel like i have to nitpick a little because i feel like there’s so much potential, although i try to get ahold of myself because i don’t want to sound like i know things. i think i care for the film industry? 😀


  6. Mylene Dizon hands down commands admiration for sustaining our interest for two jampacked hours she controls the film beautifully – for the script looks like numbered sequences and she provides the transition the layers and the energy to move it forward – with some help from her marvelous supporting cast. Likewise audacity is still in Tessie Tomass blood – the line between her drama and farce is invisible – the casualness of Joyces attitude toward death is emphasized by her maternal guilt the notion that children should be the one burying their parents not otherwise speaks of deep traditional background. – but the closure she achieves is spiritual like a paradise of lost souls where the white light marks its deadend.


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