It looks like Netflix is stepping up its game by adding quality Pinoy films in their catalog for June. Aside from including a Cinemalaya Film Festival entry, there are also films from last year’s Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino and Metro Manila Film Festival. How about adding these to your June watch list?
Pamilya Ordinaryo by Eduardo Roy Jr.
“Barely making a living as pickpockets, a teenage couple in Manila resort to desperate measures when their one-month-old child is kidnapped.”
Eduardo Roy Jr.’s Cinemalaya 2016 entry, Pamilya Ordinaryo, was one of the most talked-about feature-length films during its season. There was nothing more natural than Ronwaldo Martin and Hasmine Killip’s acting chops and nothing more hair-raising than the reality of living in poverty in Metro Manila.
It won 4 prestigious Balanghai Trophies during the Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival awards night: Best Film, Best Editing, Best Director, and Best Actress for Hasmine Killip. It also won a 2017 Gawad Urian Award for Best Actress and had nominations at international film festivals such as the 2016 Stockholm Film Festival and the 2016 Venice Film Festival.
Netflix is yet to give a specific date for Pamilya Ordinaryo’s June release.
Lola Igna by Eduardo Roy Jr. (June 18)
“An elderly woman finds her life disrupted when her family and village realize she has a chance at a world record for being the oldest grandmother alive. “
Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino 2019 gave us yet another Eduardo Roy Jr. masterpiece. Lola Igna is a film close to the director’s heart, it was a tribute to Roy’s great grandmother who resided in the Mountain Province and who died at 80 back in 2012. The film depicted what it would have been like if Roy and his grandmother had more moments to get to know each other.
During the 2019 Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino, Lola Igna won awards for Best Picture, Best Screenplay, Best Musical Score, and Best Actress for Angie Ferro who portrayed the titular character.
Sunod by Carlo Ledesma (June 14)
“As the medical expenses for her daughter stack up, a mother takes a demanding call center job where the building’s sinister secrets begin to haunt her.”
Sunod is Carlo Ledesma’s official entry to the 2019 Metro Manila Film Festival. It’s not your typical Pinoy horror/thriller film with cringe acting and suspense let-downs. Carmina Villaroel shines as the haunted frantic mother, none of those standard childish screams and typical breathing-heavily-because-you’re-scared acting. The cinematography was superb, the quality was superb. This might possibly be one of the best Filipino horror films you’ll be watching.
Pinoy Sunday by Ho Wi Ding (June 5)
“Inspired by a 1958 Roman Polanski short, this lighthearted examination of modern life in Taipei follows two Filipino immigrants, Manuel and Dado, during their day off from work, when the chance discovery of a discarded couch leads to adventure.”
Pinoy Sunday is a 2009 Taiwanese comedy-drama that stars Bayani Agbayani and Epy Quizon and is directed by Malaysian filmmaker Ho Wi Ding. The film went on to win Best New Director at the 47th Golden Horse Awards and Best Picture at the 2010 Comedy Cluj Festival in Romania. Various reviews have praised the natural comedic acting of the pair as well as the lessons on perseverance and friendship learned throughout the film.
UnTrue by Sigrid Bernardo (June 22)
“A bruised and beaten wife seeks the help of Georgian police against her husband. In this he said-she said film, truths, lies, and the dark past will be uncovered.”
The tandem of Xian Lim and Cristine Reyes makes its debut with the film UnTrue, a drama thriller that drew out some serious acting from the pair and a plot that’s something new to Philippine cinema. The dark and mysterious storyline coupled with great cinematography (with equally cold color grading) will give you chills all throughout. Just watch the trailer and you’ll know what we mean!
Jo Koy: In His Elements (June 12)
For the first time ever, comedian Jo Koy takes Netflix to the Philippines in his new comedy special, Jo Koy: In His Elements. Koy celebrates his heritage by telling jokes about life as a Filipino-American while highlighting the culture of Manila. He uses this opportunity to shine a light on other Filipino-American performers by welcoming to the stage famed break-dancer Ronnie, Grammy-winning producer !llmind, singer/songwriter Inigo Pascual, and comedians Andrew Lopez, Joey Guila, and Andrew Orolfo.
Da 5 Bloods by Spike Lee (June 12)
From Academy Award Winner Spike Lee comes a New Joint: the story of four African-American Vets — Paul (Delroy Lindo), Otis (Clarke Peters), Eddie (Norm Lewis), and Melvin (Isiah Whitlock, Jr.) — who return to Vietnam. Searching for the remains of their fallen Squad Leader (Chadwick Boseman) and the promise of buried treasure, our heroes, joined by Paul’s concerned son (Jonathan Majors), battle forces of Man and Nature — while confronted by the lasting ravages of The Immorality of The Vietnam War.
The Last Days of American Crime by Olivier Megaton (June 5)
As a final response to terrorism and crime, the US government plans to broadcast a signal making it impossible for anyone to knowingly commit unlawful acts. Graham Bricke (Édgar Ramírez), a career criminal who was never able to hit the big score, teams up with famous gangster progeny Kevin Cash (Michael Pitt), and black-market hacker Shelby Dupree (Anna Brewster), to commit the heist of the century and the last crime in American history before the signal goes off.
Which film are you going to watch first?