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Twinkle: A summer of renewal and reckoning

MANILA, Philippines - A baby girl found at an overrun NPA camp is raised by an army officer as his own daughter. She grows up a rebellious, drug-addicted teenager — a disappointment to his father, now a retired general.

Months before her 19th birthday, her biological father — a former communist rebel — appears at their doorstep. The man is dying of cancer and wants to meet his long-lost child. However, she doesn’t even know she was adopted.

Ang Tag-araw ni Twinkle is director Gil M. Portes’ entry to the Sineng Pambansa Film Festival’s All Masters Edition, a showcase of 10 independent films from 10 of the country’s most accomplished, veteran filmmakers set for September. Written by Enrique Ramos, the film is a heartwarming family drama about political convictions, the follies of youth and the importance of family.

It stars Ellen Adarna in the title role of an army brat who undergoes drug rehabilitation one fateful summer in her family’s farm in Quezon in the company of her parents and her biological father.

As she detoxifies her body from her drug habit, her long-lost father’s body wastes away from sickness. During this painful process, they make up for the 18 years that they were away from each other. She also makes peace with her adoptive parents as she learns life-changing lessons about the meaning of rebellion, the nature of political beliefs and the value of a life well-lived.

But unknown to her, a reckoning of her two fathers’ intertwined past invites a potentially violent conclusion.

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Ang Tag-araw ni Twinkle also stars Cris Villanueva and Arnold Reyes as the retired general and the former NPA leader, respectively, who forge an unexpected friendship while looking after their troubled daughter.

Also in the cast are Rina Reyes, Pinky Amador, Dominic Roco, Marc Aqueza, Annica Dolonius, Benjie Felipe, Jess Evardone and Lester Llansang. The movie will have a gala premiere on Sept. 6 at SM Megamall. It will have a one-week run from Sept. 11 to 17 at SM Cinemas nationwide, along with nine other films featured in the festival.

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