Improved acting, unexpected twist

October 27, 2022 Mario Bautista 5217 views


Selena2‘SELINA’S Gold’ is the latest film of Direk Mac Alejandre with Vivamax and it starts streaming this Friday, October 28. Direk Mac says he first pitched this project 15 years ago. But at that time, they cannot do it because it’s so daring. Recently, Vincent del Rosario of Viva reminded him about it.

“He said, naaalala mo ba ‘yung kuwento mo set nung panahon ng Hapon?” he says. “Nagustuhan pala nila ‘yun and now, puwede nang gawin sa streaming. I was doing then wholesome romances then with Donna Cruz and Angelu de Leon, but this one is about sex and sexual politics. Bakit ang mga lalaki, kapag may pera at kapangyarihan, they get everything they want? ‘Yun ang character ni Jay Manalo rito as Tiago. He can get what he wants because he is rich and powerful, until dumating si Angela Khang as Selina.”

”Selina’s Gold” is set in 1942 at the start of World War II after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Selina is a pretty young village lass sold by her father to Tiago as payment for a debt. She is forced to work for Tiago as his personal aid.

Tiago rapes her repeatedly. She eventually learns to accept her fate and plays along with Tiago. The only thing that motivates her is her hope of finding Tiago’s hidden stash of gold and jewelry, so she can run away with it and start a new life elsewhere.

Tiago has a blind male helper, Domeng (Gold Aceron), who is a silent witness when he abuses Selina. Tiago is also physically abusive to the blind boy. Since they’re both oppressed by Tiago, Selina and Domeng find sympathy with each other.

With this kind of story about oppression and injustice, it’s easy to conclude that the movie will end in bloodshed and violence. But there’s a shocking twist in the story that will surprise the audience. We ourself didn’t see it coming.

Since this is a Vivamax flick, you know that it’s made on a limited time and budget. But in all fairness to Direk Mac, he’s able to come up with a period film that is authentic in its period production design and with a very classy cinematography. Even the musical score that banks mainly on percussion is superb.

The acting of the three leads is uniformly splendid, with Jay Manalo easily standing out as the dirty old man who gets the shock of his life in the film’s climax. Gold Aceron elicits a lot of sympathy as the abused, lonely boy who finds much needed solace in the arms of Angeli who empathizes with him.

Angeli’s acting from “Silip sa Apoy”, where she was also helmed by Direk Mac, has really improved tremendously, making her story arc from being the crying rape victim to the empowered angel of vengeance very believable. The movie ends with an exodus scene, which is indicative of Angeli and Gold’s newly obtained freedom.

As for the sizzling sex scenes obligatory in a Vivamax release, they’re all there. This is the most brazen performance for the camera of both Jay and Angeli, who also has a tender bedscene with Gold. But even more shocking here is the unrestricted use of gutter and what others would consider as improper, obscene language.

The manangs would surely cringe at the unabashed use of Tagalog words for breast, nipple and the male and female sex organs, with the characters even colorfully describing in great detail what’s being done to these intimate parts of the body.

And there are scenes where Jay shows how to eat pinipig ala carte, while Angeli shows how to drink gatas or milk in the most indecently intimate ways possible. The way you look at pinipig and gatas will never be the same again.