“Isang karangalan ang ipaglaban ang ating Inang Bayan.” – Heneral Antonio Luna
Movie reviews are not my cup of tea but I completely feel the need to share my thoughts about this biopic. I don’t want more and more people to be deceived by all the posts and rants made by movie viewers on the social networking sites. So before you go wasting your time and money in cinemas or exhausting all efforts in order to watch it for free online, you better read the reasons why you should not watch this historic epic. I tell you, you’ll regret it.
- It’s brutal. Brains are exploding like fireworks in the vast skies. It’s an all-out war between the Americans and Filipinos and Filipinos against Filipinos. Believe me, you would not want to see with your bare eyes your fellowmen killing and plotting revenge against each other. You better stick with your romantic comedy movies and die in sweetness with Kathniel, LizQuen, and Jadine. Plus Aldub. :)
- It’s a waste of money. Two hundred is too much already for a boring historic film. Even if they give 50% discount to students it is still not worth it. You better save that money for a coffee in Starbucks or buy ingredients for pastillas. You will have better chances of becoming the next online sensation.
- It will make your head ache. Pedro Paterno? Paco Roman? Pedro Janolino? Joven Hernando? Emilio Aguinaldo? And why didn’t I see Apolinario Mabini standing throughout the movie? Was it because the writer decided it to have it that way? Was it the instruction of the director? My, it will totally blow you up. You badly need to scan again that stupid History book you once cursed because of all the names, events and dates that you have to memorize. Movies are entertainment, not a quiz bee.
- It is full of injustice, corruption, abuse of power, and all the other perennial problems of the Philippines. You see these issues everyday over the news so why would you want to spend money to watch it in the cinema? It’s the same problem, only set in different time. This paints a picture of what’s wrong and what’s still wrong in the country.
- It’s serious. Come on people, the world has offered you a lot of problems already. Why would you succumb into something that will make your heart ache? Alleviate it with comic movies and not this boring historic drama.
- It’s so old school. You are living in the present – in a generation where everything is accessible in a single click so why would you want to commemorate the past? Past is past people. Move on! It won’t help to keep on looking back at the past. Move forward and experience life.
- It’s deceiving. If you are not fond of history, it will totally mislead you! You will get to admire the fierceness of Luna and pity the ignominious end he experienced in the hands of Aguinaldo’s men. You’ll be trapped in misconceptions and believe whatever the movie is feeding you. With its sole goal of unmasking the demons seen as idols, the movie will ultimately alter your views upon the other heroes and the fairytale told liberation of the Philippines.
- It’s misleading. With all the societal problems this country is facing, you’ll get to love Artikulo Uno (Whoever is abusing the power of being an official shall be dethroned from the position and will be killed without due process) and will gradually think that it’s the solution of the crimes we have which is absolutely wrong. What are Human Rights for if this is our way of thinking?
- It’s revolutionary. After watching the movie, you’ll feel a little bit guilty because you know by heart that your love for your country is not as deep as his. You know that you’ll never be able to discard your clan loyalties and look more than your regional ties. You are one of those untrained soldiers who are afraid to stand and defend the country. You can’t match his loyalty and that you are one of the people who have killed him if you were in the setting.
- It has character biases. The movie depicts Luna as a nationalistic general with a legendary temper and pride without adding the fact that he was more than his military title. He was by far a scientist (chief chemist of Municipal Laboratory of Manila), writer (known as Taga-ilog and founded La Independencia), lover of Nelly Boustead (exchanged heated arguments with Rizal for the half French half-Filipina beauty favored the national hero), and student of the great General Gérard Leman (the first hero of World War I).
If you are still not convinced on not watching Heneral Luna, I won’t force you; but do not come back regretting what you will learn. Do not blame me if you get bored. It’s your decision to watch the brutal end of the fiery Filipino general who faced an enemy more treacherous than the Americans – his own countrymen. It is your own choice to look beyond the conformed ideals of history and to see with clearer eyes the real heroes whose motives legitimately for the country and not for personal gains. It’s your own decision.