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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.

Aug 28, 2013

Director Gil Portes' Sineng Pambansa Entry, 'Tag-Araw Ni Twinkle', A Moving Family Drama

DIRECTOR GIL PORTES is quite active this year. He has two movies that have already been shown, “Bayang Magiliw” that takes a potshot on those who are against the controversial Reproductive Health Bill starring Wendell Ramos as a hypocritical mayor and the Cinemalaya entry about the ills of cheating and lying that got an A rating from the Cinema Evaluation Board, “Liars” starring Alessandra de Rossi. His new movie, “Ang Tag-araw ni Twinkle”, will be shown as part of Sineng Pambansa filmfest at SM Cinemas from September 11 to 17.

Written by Eric Ramos, it’s the story of two men from totally different worlds who become friends because of their common love for their daughter, Twinkle. One is a general in the army, Cris Villanueva, and the other is an NPA communist rebel, Arnold Reyes.

Twinkle is the daughter of Arnold. In an NPA camp, Arnold and his men have an encounter with the military. He gets shot and is wounded, but he’s spirited away by his comrades. Unfortunately, his wife was left behind and killed by soldiers, leaving their baby girl an orphan.

Cris gets the baby and raises her with his wife, Rina Reyes. She grows up to be Ellen Adarna, who goes wayward because of the bad influence of her new boyfriend, Dominic Roco, the son of another general who’s also a friend of Cris. Dominic introduces her to prohibited drugs and she gets addicted.

The movie focuses on the summer that her parents take her to their farm to detoxify and rehabilitate her with the help of a doctor, Pinky Amador. During her stay at the farm, Arnold comes back to her life. He’s dying of cancer and implores Cris to give him the chance to reconnect with his daughter.

“Our original title for the movie is ‘Isang Tag-araw sa Buhay ni Twinkle Marie Payawan’,” says Direk Gil. “E, sobrang haba, so iniklian namin at naging ‘Ang Tag-araw ni Twinkle’, which became more significant kasi talaga namang this is about that all important summer in Twinkle’s life.”

How would he assess Ellen’s performance? “Magaling siya. It’s not like she’s acting. Very natural. Napansin ko na yan noon in ‘Bayang Magiliw’ where she played Wendell’s teenage daughter. I’m really surprised why GMA is not giving her better roles. At napakagaling din dito nina Cris and Arnold as the two male leads. Si Arnold, nagpapayat dito nang husto for his role as the dying father. You’d really think may sakit siya.”

A moving, well acted and heartwarming family drama, “Ang Tag-araw ni Twinkle” is about how Arnold catches up with his long lost daughter who doesn’t even know she’s an adopted child, how Twinkle reconciles with her parents and her first boyfriend played by Marc Acueza, how all they become an unconventional but supportive family and how Twinkle eventually redeems herself from her addiction to start anew.