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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.

Dec 8, 2013

Cristine Reyes The First To Be Eliminated In Starstruck 1 But Now Bigger Than Any Of Her Batchmates

WE HONESTLY don’t know why GMA-7 let go of Cristine Reyes so easily. Cristine started with them as a member of the first batch of Starstruck. She was the first to be eliminated in her batch of 14 wannabes. Now, after ten years, she is the biggest star among them, bigger than winners Jennylyn Mercado and Mark Herras.

Obviously, GMA didn’t see Cristine’s potential as she was just languishing with them for several years. So she had herself managed by Viva and moved to ABS-CBN where she did one soap after another. Now, after “Bukas na Lang Kita Mamahalin”, she was quickly added to the cast of the new soap, “Honesto”.

On the big screen, right after “When the Love Has Gone”, she’ll be seen next in “Girl Boy Bakla Tomboy”. And she’s busy doing two more new movies, “My Trophy Wife” with Derek Ramsay, and “The Gifted” with Anne Curtis, another talent who also started with GMA-7 but is now a bigger star on ABS-CBN. Director Gil Portes also wants Cristine to star in the "Miss X" sequel he's planning to do in Amsterdam next year. The first one starred Vilma Santos as a Pinay prostie in Amsterdam's red light district. The sequel will be about the daughter of Ate Vi who also ends up like her mom.

Cristine is really sexy and we agree with those who say she’s one of the best actresses in today’s batch of young actresses. We just saw her in “When the Love is Gone” and she really sizzles as Jake Cuenca’s wife who has a torrid affair with Gabby Concepcion who’s married to Alice Dixson. She appears naked, covered only with soapsuds, in her bathtub scene. She does some truly wild love scenes with Gabby, but she also shines even in her heated confrontation scenes with all her co-stars: Jake, Gabby, Alice and Andi Eigenmann. Given a truly serious material and a good director who’ll mine her talent well, we have no doubt she could win acting awards in the future.

The movie itself is a very commercial enterprise, well directed by Andoy Ranay (who also started with GMA-7 directing soaps and the movie “Sosy Problems”). He certainly knows what he’s doing in coming up with a very glossy and more sensationalized version of the late Danny Zialcita’s “Nagalit ang Buwan sa Haba ng Gabi”. In the original, Manny (the late Dindo Fernando), was just shot dead by the gay Eddie Garcia. Now, Gabby in the same role is violently tortured while naked then mauled to death by Jake, who shines here in his role as the macho gay husband of Cristine. We just wish he wasn’t made to put on a lurid blonde wig in the scene where he’s tormenting Gabby as that’s definitely over the top.

Almost everyone in the cast has his or her own moment. Alice’s best seen is when she sees her aging self on the mirror and cries as she touches the lines on her face. Gabby shines in their confrontation scene where he admits he’s not sure if he loves both Cristine and Alice. Playing Andi’s leading man is newcomer Anton Revilla and it’s uncanny that he somewhat looks like Direk Andoy himself. In fairness to Anton, he does very well in his only scene with Gabby who asks him to stop seeing her daughter Andi. With the success of “When the Love is Gone”, we won’t be surprised if Direk Andoy would be one of the favoured directors of Viva. We heard he’s already been assigned to direct “Trophy Wife” after original director Elwood Perez was eased out.