Two motion pictures, Call Me Papi and Ang Kwento ni Makoy are showing in cinemas this week. To those who love Pinoy movies in general, and Filipino men in particular, it is imperative that you catch, watch and give these movie offerings your precious time and hard-earned money because they present novel ways of the whys and wherefores of the most misunderstood yet loved beings called men.
In the Alvin Yapan written and directed Call Me Papi from FEAST Foundation and VIVA Films, we get to meet a quintuple of working-class men namely Sonny (Enzo Pineda) who got busted for having an affair with a married woman, a gym instructor, crashes in with his friend Lito (Royce Cabrera) along with three other working guys: Ben (Albie Casino), Mario (Lharby Policarpio), and Roy (Aaron Concepcion).
They all share and reside in an apartment. As the movie unfolds, we get to see their differences, dreams, likes and feelings, lies and secrets, truths they hold dear and sacred, and heartbreaks and realization come to light.
This movie works because the group of men in the cast, not only look but are authentic in their display of male bravado, concern, friendship, and emotions.
The jokes they share are not sickening and politically incorrect. They accept facts on sexuality with no tinge of bigotry. The fondness and care they have never borders on the bromantic. They argue and fight, with emotions flaring and in rage but once their testosterone cools down, they are back to being brothers. What is refreshing about this barkadahan in this movie, is how it showcased that men can be supportive of each other and that, come hell or high water, have each other’s back.
Pineda is the most gorgeous on-screen and as Sonny, he screams thirst trap, especially with his lean and mean body on display. Casino gives a new spin to being a crybaby and hopeless romantic Policarpio and Cabrera are masters in the playing-for-truth category as Mario and Lito. They even share great screen chemistry. Concepcion is the baby and the next big leading man thanks to the innocence and sincerity that he infused into his man/boy portrayal of Roy.
The other movie’s alpha is Buboy Villar playing the dramatic lead in this film directed by Direk HJCP and produced by Masaya Studio Inc.
What makes the movie a great watch, without a doubt, Villar’s career-defining portrayal of Makoy. He is all heart here. How he faces the physical and emotional demands of a nurse during the pandemic, and how he brings the many emotions on screen, is worthy of a future nomination, if not an award for best actor. With Villar, his character’s compassion for others is honest to goodness. He even employed his charm offensive and Thompson’s character was the happy recipient of it. Villar’s portrayal of Makoy is on the level of an earth angel personified.
Both cinematic offerings highlighted the fact that there are more to men than their bananas and dangling eggs, brawn, ego, machismo, and pride. Truly they are not from Mars since these movies remind us that they have their share of all the feels as well and what they value – honesty, friendship, family, love, and the beauty and surprises of life – are all for real.
Call Me Papi and Ang Kwento ni Makoy, are opening in cinemas nationwide this December 7.