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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

May 29, 2016

Tatay Kong Sexy Movie Review: One Of The Most Enjoyable, Entertaining Local Films We've Seen This Year

DIRECTOR JOEY Reyes and Sen. Jinggoy Estrada have proven themselves a winning team in two past #movies they’ve made before, “Katas ng Saudi” and “Magkaibigan”, both award-winning wholesome family dramedies. They now show that good things come in three’s as their third collaboration, “Tatay Kong Sexy”, is another heartwarming story of a widowed father struggling to raise his three kids by himself.

The characters and the situations in this film are all so real, not just an over-engineered enterprise with manipulative plot mechanics in the script aimed to make pa-cute and please the crowd. Sen. Jinggoy is Paquito, owner of a car repair shop whose wife died of the big C five years ago. He has three kids: Empress Schuck as Mariel, Jolo Estrada as Frankie and Maliksi Morales as Ken.

He then meets #MajaSalvador as Monette, after she had her car repaired in his shop. Maja works as a fixer and takes care of her sister’s love son. There’s mutual attraction between them but this is not articulated. Problems arise when Empress’ boyfriend, Patrick (Dominic Roque), whose parents are very wealthy, gets her pregnant. Patrick works as manager in a bank that is owned by his own father no less (the late Mark Gil.)

But naturally, Jinggoy fumes. Empress, who is initially hostile to Maja, finds an ally in her so it becomes easier for Jinggoy to accept his only daughter’s pregnancy. But things get complicated when Dominic’s mom (Marina Benipayo) advises him that they’re against the idea of their son marrying Empress just because she’s now preggy.

What’s nice about the movie is that it doesn’t dwell on negative situations. When problems arise, they are solved easily without unnecessary histrionics and melodramatic confrontations. The pacing is very brisk and there’s no time to get bored. This is a comedy where the laughter is not forced. And there are many really hilarious laugh-out-loud scenes.

You should watch out for that dinner scene where Jinggoy and family are invited by Dominic’s family to their own well appointed home. Jinggoy is dressed to kill for the occasion, with Maja herself as his stylist, and the result is truly quite funny. You can easily observe the disparity in the economic and social standing of the two families as they interact with each other.

The acting of the entire cast is also uniformly good. Maja easily stands out in her “babaeng bakla” role, which she delivers so effortlessly. She is just a natural ribtickler in a number of scenes, like in restaurant scene with Jinggoy’s family where she is formally introduced to his kids. Her being a motor mouth turns off Empress who tries to embarrass her but she’s completely oblivious of Empress’ sarcasm.

She’s also good in the dinner scene with Dominic’s family where she praises the dishes laid out for them and asks: “Ano to? Niluto nyo o binili lang?” We honestly believe Maja is better than most of her colleagues and contemporaries at ABS-CBN these days.

Sen. Jinggoy invests his role as the caring and sensitive father with the right mixture of dignity and comic charm. Empress is also very effective as the daughter who admits her mistakes to her forgiving dad. She sizzles with the right emotions in that scene where she dumps Dominic for refusing to marry her. All the rest give excellent support, including Beauty Gonzales as Empress’ best friend and even Marina Benipayo, a former beauty queen who we didn’t know can also act well. She is absolutely fine in that scene with Dominic where she tells her son not to marry Empress.

We just wish the movie has given a more proper and satisfying ending. It seems to have ended abruptly after Empress has decided to reconcile with her erring groom. One aspect of the story that is left hanging in the balance concerns Maja’s ward, whose dad suddenly shows up and wants to take boy to the States as his petition to be a migrant has been approved.

It’s a volatile turn of events, but there was no follow up at all about the boy’s reaction on this decision of his dad. But all in all, “Tatay Kong Sexy” is a very enjoyable movie. One of the most entertaining local films we’ve seen this year that is a fitting tribute to dads in time for the coming Father’s Day celebration.