Patay Na Si Hesus is a journey of a typical Filipino family that makes every fellow who watches it, automatically become part of the movie.
Numerous reviews of this multi-awarded indie film in the recent Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino have all claimed in unison that the movie gave nothing but a heartwarming, good laugh as every scene unfolds to the next. But for us, it wanders beyond that.
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The story was about Iyay, a separated wife who raised four children all on her own. Upon receipt of the news of her estranged husband’s death, she dragged her children all the way from Cebu to attend their father’s funeral in Dumaguete. It was supposed to be a heavy tale about death and loss but that putative melancholy was effectively dissolved with powerful spells of laughter which must certainly have shaken everyone’s chair in the cinemas.
The extreme characters of the story would have been a formidable, tragic mixture if not for the well-execution and internalization of each cast. Like Iyay, being a single mom that she is, must be firm yet compassionate at the same time towards her messy brood.
And Jaclyn Jose, being an expert actor herself, was able to depict such irony in one person by giving out her best without overdoing it. And her acting skills have led each of the other actors to the moments which they were to build themselves. And who could forego the raw and real portrayal of the transgender man role that Chai Fonacier played beautifully? And a few of you might really think that she was a natural transgender! No one with open eyes would surely miss that world-class performance.
Adding interest is Melde Montanez’s role as Jay, the immature and clueless bunso in the family, whose character was beautifully complemented with the aforementioned two. And the unexpected entrance of the ex-nun, aunt Linda, Iyay’s sister-in-law, was a great addition to the already chaotic bunch. Who else? Ay, joke lang. Of course, who would dare forget the heart of the movie? Kuya Bert whose role was played by Vincent Viado, who despite having Down Syndrome, has amazingly shown (and reminded the eldest of broods who were watching the movie) what is expected from the firstborns of the families–a mature, sweet, and calm elder brother. Add up the fact that he’s super huggable and funny with that kind of groovy energy to which Hudas, the Shih Tzu dog, was a total witness of.
Why it’s everyone’s road trip
Here comes the part of the movie that we have been wanting to discuss with you, from the standpoint of a (poetic) traveller.
As mentioned in the first few sentences of this article, Patay Na Si Hesus is quite a journey to which every viewer can immediately relate to, as his or her own ride in life.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if the movie still lingered in the viewer’s mind long after we watched it in the cinema. It was obviously a mind blowing, majestic result of laudable craftsmanship which stirred us all inside in a warm, familiar way.
Really, the Filipino film industry has come so far but with every scene closer to our hearts. It is celebratory how the film’s ‘trip’ happens in our daily lives – chaos in the family, individual problems, gender preferences, and how each of these impacts the outer society. Every one of us got represented in that quirky, hilarious film. And we get to discover more of ourselves as we move along this journey like Iyay’s family did on their way to Dumaguete.
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Each of us had a good, hearty (if not wild) laugh not only while watching the film and that must have certainly continued when we get up the next day to recommence our own travels. And we laugh more upon realising that one of us plays in real life the role of Iyay, Kuya Bert, Jude, Jay, Linda, or even Hudas.
So how about you, how far did that Patay Na Si Hesus road trip take you?