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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 21, 2022



‘SUNTOK SA BUWAN’ is now airing on Cignal-TV5. It is billed as a movie serye since it’s shot like a full length film. 

The technical aspects are really good. 

It’s set in Baguio and explores the fresh locales in the summer capital not usually shown in other local shows. 

It’s easy to see why Aga Muhlach accepted to do it as the core story about a caring father and a dutiful son is so endearing. 

It is age appropriate for Aga now that he’s 52. 

And his role as Jimmyboy Laurente is something he has not done before: a former boxer who now works as an FX driver in Baguio and well loved by everyone in their community at the Valley of Colors for being so helpful, generous and accommodating. 

He keeps on coughing and his son, Elijah Canlas as Dos, keeps on telling him to go consult a doctor but he’s hard-headed and won’t do it. 

So, one day, he just collapses while on the road and when he wakes up, he’s in already in the hospital and the doctor diagnoses him to have lung cancer. 

Adding to his problem is a drug lord, Magnum (Rez Cortez), with whom he seems to have been affiliated before. 

Magnum’s men are hounding him as Magnum wants him to work for him again as a drug courier. When he rejects it, Magnum threatens to harm his son and his mom (Tess Antonio.)  

Aga is convincing in eliciting our sympathy as the father who’s beset with so many problems, but the real surprise for us here is Elijah Canlas as his son, Dos. 

The filial connection between them is very palpable and Elijah is so persuasive in his role as a young aspiring boxer.  

After seeing him looking quite effeminate in “Gameboys”, we didn’t expect he’d be credible as a tough and brawny teener who looks so proficient in his boxing scenes. 

It's obvious he trained well for the part. He is also given his own contravida, played by ALbie Casino as the arrogant and annoying Pistol.

To attract younger audiences, he is given a love interest for the young romantic angle. This is the winsome Maris Racal as Trina, a pretty girl who’s mom is abroad and who is estranged from her lawyer dad. 

She opts to live with an aunt in Baguio to work as a vendor in a souvenir shop. 

She and Elijah start on the wrong foot as they’re competitors in the souvenir complex where they occupy adjacent stalls. 

They’re always at odds with each other but it’s easy to see they will eventually get cozy with one another.  

“Suntok sa Buwan” is written by a pool of writers headed by Antoinette Jadaone, who’s also one of the producers. 

It’s apparent that they took real good care in constructing an absorbing story with relatable characters that viewers could easily empathize with. 

Director Geo Lomuntad keeps the well acted narrative flowing at a good pace and he’s lucky to be given good production values. 

Our only beef is that the show is aired only on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, since Wednesday and Friday is reserved by TV5 for the PBA Games. 

This will definitely hamper the cultivation of habitual nightly viewing which is the norm for primetime soaps.