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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.

Jul 24, 2017

Ryza Cenon, Today's Most Hated Woman On TV, Sizzles As A Sexy Manananggal In 'Manananggal Sa Unit 23 B'

RYZA CENON is today’s most hated woman on local TV because of her very effective portrayal of the scheming homewrecker in the number one afternoon soap, “Ika-6 na Utos”. She will soon elicit praises for her title role portrayal of “Ang Manananggal sa Unit 23B”, which will be shown in theaters this August 16 to 22 as an entry in the Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino for the Buwan ng Sariling Wika.

We’ve seen the film as part of the QCinema Filmfest and Ryza, as the mysterious Jewel, gives her most daring and most controversial performance ever. She’s so sexy in that scene where her body grows huge wings and then gets divided into two as a manananggal. Later, as a love starved woman, she is shown giving pleasure to herself while in bed.

Ryza gives a nuanced performance, competently projecting the anguish and loneliness of an isolated soul who has a deadly secret. She keeps a turtle for a pet but, at night, she seduces men and then tears up their chests to eat their hearts. But the movie is surprisingly also a romance. This happens when Jewel meets Nico (played by Martin del Rosario), who is melancholic and lonely like her after his girlfriend just dumped him.

It’s not surprising that they can easily relate well with each other, like he also has a turtle for a pet. He calls it Dumbledore while Ryza calls her turtle, Edward. Obvious bang avid fans sila ng “Twilight” series? Do you think there is a happy ending waiting for this odd pair of lovers? That’s for you to find out when you watch the movie this coming August.

When we first saw the this movie, there were some parts that we found dragging but IdeaFirst Company producer Perci Intalan tells us that they have since re-edited the whole flick and even re-shot some scenes. So, in effect, you’re going to see a totally new version of the movie, which is written by Jen Chuaunsu and directed by Prime Cruz, the same theme who did the surprise indie hit, “Sleepless”, and the not so impressive mainstream film “Can We Still Be Friends”.

We ask Ryza how she felt playing the role of a manananggal? “It was very challenging for me,” she says. “First time ko to do a lead role in a full length film at may daring scenes pa agad na ipinagawa sa akin. But the script is good so I just put my full trust in our director.”

The movie also features Cholo Barretto as one of her victims (this is how they met and eventually became sweethearts in real life, so this movie is truly memorable for both of them) and Vangie Labalan, who won the QCCinema Filmfest best supporting actress award for her remarkable portrayal of Martin’s hilarious grandmother.