CINEMALAYA 2013: “Rekorder” (2013, Mikhail Red) – Review by Hipster Marius

581829_503039949763702_1816303211_nRATING: 7/10

Director: Mikhail Red
Cast: Ronnie Quizon, Suzette Ranillo, Earl Ignacio, Abe Pagtama, Mike Lloren, Joe Gruta & Belinda Mariano
Screenplay: Mikhail Red & Ian Victoriano

Director Mikhail Red’s first feature film, “Rekorder” is the kind of film that leaves the audience a question with an answer that doesn’t come too easily.

“Rekorder” is not a film I intended to watch but I did anyway because a lot of screenings are now sold out and, really, you can’t be too picky anymore. I did not expect anything since the trailer didn’t give away much of the premise. So, this is what the film’s all about: a man who used be a cameraman in the 80’s is now pirating movies. He brings his outdated DV Camera with him all the time until one night, he shoots something else… okay, that’s it. No spoilers here.

But that premise didn’t really appear in the film thirty minutes into it. To cut to the chase, it’s really draggy. Really, really draggy. There are a lot of unnecessary scenes, and a whole lot of walking. Oh, a hell lot of walking…. and staring at nothing. Other than that, the film is great! Great plot. The whole time while watching the film, I go “What the hell would I do in this situation?” If you know “Morality vs. Ethics” in Philosophy, it’s somewhat like that. And, I guess the hardest conflict is with yourself. Good screenplay, but too long. I think it should’ve ended 20 minutes earlier with a tragic ending than provide a resolution, that’s just me, anyway.

The cinematography is good too, though inconsistent. The film uses footage from mobile phones, CCTV cameras, etc. to switch to another angle in the scene which somehow gives it texture. A friend told me that the film used a “Guerilla Filmmaking” style (making films with whatever resources available) and this style, I think, is really necessary to create the atmosphere. So, that’s a check.

Acting, now! Ronnie Quizon as the lead is okay. It’s not really impressive but then it’s all what the script requires. The other actors did okay. There are few cameos of the production crew’s friends and families (you can really tell they’re not actors).

The direction is okay, too. But a little too much. It’s as if the filmmaker wants to show everything that he can do and put it in this one film. But, if I didn’t know of the director, I would’ve easily mistaken this for a Brillante Mendoza film. Nevertheless, still good!

But, the reason you should watch it is for its newbie crew! It’s amazing to know that this film came out from the creative juices of these young people. Still grateful I was able to watch this! Support and watch Mikhail Red’s “Rekorder”!

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