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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.

Oct 5, 2022



PHIL GIORDANO is an Italian-American director who made his debut in “Pusoy”, which was produced by Brillante Mendoza. 

He is now on his own in “Pabuya (Reward)” that starts streaming on Vivamax this Friday.  

“I have no collaboration with another producer in ‘Pabuya’ so this time, it’s all mine,” he says. 

“It’s more of my own personal style, specially the visuals. And I want to thank my stars and crew as I was so happy to be working with all of them in ‘Pabuya’.”   

The film is about warring gangs, so how did he prepare in directing it? 

“I did immersion research. I talked with some actual gang members and observed how they act, dress, and interact with each other and with women. 

"I asked them a lot of questions and they’re very helpful in giving me insights to nail their characterization in the movie. I want to be accurate on all those details about them.” 

Phil says he is inspired by the works of Martin Scorcese about the mob, like “Mean Streets” and “Goodfellas”, and also some Hongkong action films about gangs.  

“Pabuya” stars Diego Loyzaga as Pepe, a gang leader who kills an the member of a rival (Marco Gomez) who turns out to be the right hand man of a cop, Victor (Jiad Arroyo.) 

Pursued by the law and the members of the rival gang headed by Felix Roco as Jojo, he runs to his girlfriend, Maricar (Jela Cuenca), to hide, but she later betrays him to Felix for a price. 

It’s good he learns about it and is able to escape from his pursuers.

He then goes to a former girlfriend, Bella (played by Fil-New Zealander beauty queen and former PBB housemate Franki Russell) in her first movie role. 

Bella is very sweet and Pepe puts all his trust in her, but when the Felix and the police offer a big reward to whoever will help in the capture of Pepe, things take a turn for the worse. 

First to be enticed to tip Pepe off is Bella’s pregnant sister (Jean Kiley), who then convinces Bella to betray Pepe so they can get the “pabuya” or reward. 

It’s easy to conclude that things will go south in this kind of movie where there are no good but only flawed characters. 

We won’t go anymore into the details of how the story is concluded, but suffice it to say that this is definitely not a feel good movie with an uplifting ending. 

After all, it’s about greed and betrayal, so what do you expect? 

But in terms of the obligatory gratuitous sex scenes expected by Vivamax subscribers in the movies they watch on this streaming channel, they will definitely not be disappointed. 

After every five or ten minutes, they offer as a salacious bed scene. 

Diego Loyzaga has sizzling nude love scenes with both Jela Cuenca and Franki Russell. Jela gets to bed not only Diego but also Felix Roco. 

And there are several other nameless starlets who take their clothes off with much alacrity to do more sex scenes. 

Voyeurs will definitely get their much “dasurved pabuya” for subscribing to the number one local streaming channel today. 

Diego’s role is quite limited and frankly, we’re disappointed on how he is given an exit.  

Franki Russell looks very pretty on screen, but she really has to work on her acting to make it more convincing. 

She’s also supposed to be an ordinary girl here living in Pampanga but she speaks Tagalog with an accent.