Millennials who canât cope with love & career
Director Jason Paul Laxamana (second from left) with the cast (from left) Tony Labrusca, Albie Casiño, Jerome Ponce, Myrtle Sarrosa and Jane Oineza during the premiere night
Millennials who can’t cope with love & career
Pablo A. Tariman (The Philippine Star) - October 5, 2019 - 12:00am

Film review: Ang Henerasyong Ayaw Sumuko sa Love

MANILA, Philippines — There is an outpouring of films on millennials these days and chances are, the characters are glued to cellphones and laptop and starting new career as vloggers and constantly monitoring subscribers and figuring out future income.

True enough, there is a lot that millennials will find strangely familiar and interesting in Ang Henerasyong Ayaw Sumuko Sa Love, written and directed by Jason Paul Laxamana.

At the outset, you see a typical school barkada finally getting a college degree and enjoying a beach celebration. They obviously enjoyed the first post-college get-together. They make a pact that every year they all would see each other in the same place, time and month.

A year later, many are still warming up to new job choices.

This vlogger (Jane Oineza) has an interesting character that sums up the disoriented millennial at her most bizarre while constantly aiming for good results.

In her attempt to get more subscribers, she starts prim and proper, almost dainty but she soon realizes her approaches are all passé in this age of wild fashion and daring. She tries all the tricks there is and finally got the subscribers’ figure she is aiming for. She gets to her desired goal but it is probably the writer’s intention to make her character look vulnerable and pathetic.

Like it or not, Jason’s latest film appears like a series of vignettes on millennials who can’t cope with love and career.

At the outset, you like to appease yourself by figuring out this must be another cyber-age version of past barkada films like Working Girls and with some real men (Tony Labrusca) and a colorful gay (Jerome Ponce) thrown in.

What happens after a year passes by?

 One is haplessly tied to his work (Tony) and another one (Albie Casiño) is trying to fall in love the proper way and he ends up looking like a confused Lothario, perfect dinner set up with candle lights and all.

Meanwhile, the girls (Jane, Myrtle Sarrosa and newcomer Thia Thomalla) are all in assorted stages of falling in and out of love and coping with new jobs all of which don’t sit well with their love life.

The result is a series of millennial vignettes that somehow never get to where it should in one unifying frame.

As it is, the story smacks of friends who have not outlived their college days and later find the yearly reunions tedious and out of sync with their present life.

But if there is one actor who keeps the film alive, it is the acting of the gay character of Jerome who brings out fresh patina in an otherwise forgettable part.

He is coy and dainty with barkada mates but then he suddenly gets daring and aggressive when he sees the apple of his eye (Anjo Damiles). He tries everything to get him — including mounting a command performance of a dance number. It had audiences roaring with laughter.

Jerome delineates gay love and lust with equal sensitivity minus the clichés of the role. And his good timing as natural comedian is also commendable.

As the film wraps up, you see another film notebook on restless days in a life of millennials.

To be sure, the film manages to entertain but in predictable, spotty doses.

The character of Jerome is indeed a saving grace and the laughter he evoked brings out what is funny and real about some gay millennials. He nailed it all and how!

Released by Regal Films, Ang Henerasyong Ayaw Sumuko Sa Love is now showing in cinemas.


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