MA’ ROSA (2016) Review
Directed by Brillante Ma Mendoza
Yes, this is the film that made Jaclyn Jose won the best actress awards at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. Beating known names in Hollywood such as Marion Cotillard and Charlize Theron. Crazy, right? But if you’ve seen Ma’ Rosa, you’ll get it especially THAT ending.
Ma’ Rosa is about Rosa, a family mother of four, not the poorest but has the means to eat at least three times a day. If you’re familiar with director Brillante Mendoza’s works, you’ll know what to expect with his films’ treatment. And Ma’ Rosa‘s story requires the raw, at times can cause dizziness because of the camerawork and uncomfortable but that is what Mendoza wants to portray. And it’s kind of daunting because it looks real, it feels real.
The film, though emits grimness through effective performances and naturalistic treatment of the shots, manages to make its story interesting more and more as the story progresses. And even though you’d hate what you’re seeing because of its gritty depiction of drug-trafficking and the politics in local authorities such as the policemen. But what the film wants to present is the kind of bond Filipino families have, that blood is thicker than water. And the film represents Filipino families in the realest way possible.
It might not get to be something original or completely riveting but you get to feel something big in the end, the emotions of the film is wrapped that blows as it ends. It’s heart breaking, and you also get to feel the hope, the pain, the courage of it all. Because you get to think that everything that’s happening is not what you expected from a film that produced a best actress out of Jaclyn Jose but the moment you get to its conclusion, it’s just wow. Words can’t describe how emotions rushed to Jose’s face, her eyes and her actions. It is subtle but powerful, that moment, every emotions went down.
That is the selling point of the film, Jaclyn Jose, but it’s not just about her. The film is more than just her acting piece, it’s a film that understands sincerely the face and the hearts of Filipinos. From how we value our family and the society that keeps us from being complete.
4 OUT OF 5 STARS
“Ma’ Rosa” is now showing in Philippine cinemas nationwide, distributed by Solar Pictures. Rated R-16 by the MTRCB.