Film review: Bulong

Posted at 02/20/11 1:27 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Be careful what you wish for because you just might get it.

More than its intriguing trailer, Star Cinema's first movie offering for the year, "Bulong," has more to give as its twists and turns can make you laugh, cry, and scream all at the same time.

The first on-screen partnership of bankable stars Angelica Panganiban and Vhong Navarro, plus the expertise of horror film master Chito S. Rono, indubitably became a hit, drawing positive feedbacks from critics and film aficionados alike.

The comedy-suspense film tells the story of a man who will do whatever it takes to win the heart of his beloved.

Conan (Navarro) is a medical aide in a town hospital in Bulacan who is desperately in love with fellow nurse Ellen, played by Bangs Garcia.

Having no chances at all, Conrad decided to seek the help of his friend, Oprah (Panganiban), who is a businesswoman-slash-budding paranormal expert. Oprah advised her friend to whisper to the dead his wish (i.e. to win Ellen's heart).

Conan opted to give it a try but failed to have a good result. Conan got what he wanted but instead of rejoicing, he got into a bigger trouble.


The rawness and the simpleness of the script, the flexibility of the characters, the execution, musical scoring, body languages and facial expressions of the cast have perfected the scenes in "Bulong."

The movie is plot-driven as the story develops from one point to another. The interconnected paces are slowly followed up with details unfolding at the near end of the film.

"Bulong" touches a few of the folklore-rooted beliefs like "kulam" (black magic), "sapi" (exorcism) and "panghuhula" (fortune telling), but it does not merely concentrate on superstitions.

However, the film fails to maintain the "reality" effect after the computer-generated demon, which seems like a scorpion, caused confusion to the viewers.

The downside of the film though will never equate the emotional meatiness of the story.

It might not be the first of its kind, but the uniqueness and playfulness of its theme will give you a different impact, an "after effect", a feel-good yet mysterious feeling.

"Bulong" is still showing in over 100 theatres nationwide.