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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.

Jan 18, 2018

Drama Queen Judy Ann Santos Shines And Sizzles In A Comic Role In The Hilarious 'Ang Dalawang Mrs. Reyes'

JUDY ANN SANTOS and Angelica Panganiban both deliver totally rollicking performances in “Ang Dalawang Reyes”. Juday is Lianne, an accomplished cosmetic surgeon who has no idea her husband, Gary Reyes (Joross Gamboa), is a closet queen. The same goes with Angelica as Cindy, the wife of Felix Reyes (JC De Vera), who has a very controlling and domineering mom (Carmi Martin).

So imagine how shocked they are when they discover that their husbands are having a very gay affair. At first, they feel very hurt after being deceived by this unusual case of marital infidelity. They think of getting even, of revenge. They suffered, so it’s only fair that their erring husbands should suffer, too. Their efforts to spy on their husbands and prevent the same sex wedding they’re having in Taiwan are absolutely hilarious, with the help of Nico Antonio as Steve, a well endowed macho dancer whose help they sought to seduce their husbands and break them apart.

The film is initially treated as a comedy, which is not conventional for a movie about infidelity. Brocka’s “Tubog sa Ginto” is also about a wife who discovers her husband is a homosexual and it’s full of drama from start to finish. “Ang Dalawang Mrs. Reyes” takes a different route, but it eventually goes dramatic as it touches on serious issues about love, forgiveness and acceptance.

It works because everyone in the ensemble cast performs marvelously. Judy Ann Santos shows her versatility delivering all her comic punchlines (and even all her cuss words) with ribtickling precision. And when she goes to drama, with her tears just flowing down effortlessly, she’s faultless. She has so many great scenes here, dramatic ones with Joross, with their daughter Andrea Brillantes and her comic ones with Angelica, who’s also does great as the secretary who marries her boss’ son without knowing he’s hetero-flexible (the word of writer-director Jun Lana, not ours.) Angelica is so effective even in scenes that would seem potentially ludicrous, like her scenes with a talking cat!

Great support is given by Joross and JC as the husbands, Carmi as the meddlesome mother in law, Quark Henares as a private detective who’s oh so obviously also in the closet, and Gladys Reyes, Cai Cortez, Wilma Doesn’t as Juday’s supportive presents.

The film has many laugh-out-loud moments that send everyone inside the theatre going on an unabashed laugh trip from beginning to end. But in the end, after all the hurt and tears, all the pain and anger, the film’s true message is that love still conquers all. And we don’t mean just romantic love but love for another coupled with lots and lots of understanding and compassion.