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REVIEW: Praybeyt Benjamin

*spoiler alert!

I was not able to watch Vice Ganda's first movie, Petrang Kabayo, and watching him in Showtime really made me curious on how he performs in a movie. Praybeyt Benjamin gave me the chance to witness this, and well, check out what I have to say.


The story is quite predictable. Benjie (Vice Ganda) belongs to a courageous family of combatants where the name "Benjamin Santos" is being passed from generation to generation. His father, Ben (Jimmy Santos), was the first to break this trend by choosing to be a scientist rather than to enter military. This and with Benjie being gay gave enough reasons for Gen. Benjamin Santos VI (Eddie Garcia) to disown them. But to give resolution to the story, when the General was kidnapped, Benjie entered the military (that's where the title "Praybeyt Benjamin" came from), and saved the General (who is his grandfather) and his uncle with the use of the weapons invented by his father. The story is shallow and as I say, predictable, though you don't really expect much depth in comedies. But as expected, this tackles gay rights and the stereotyping of machismo.

I watched the movie for Vice Ganda. Having watched him in TV and guestings, Vice's "star" quality lies in his witty impromptu punch lines. For the movie, it was all scripted -- Vice tried to twinkle but was covered in dark clouds. Maybe not his forte. There were attempts to incorporate Vice character, but it was superficial. The supporting roles, though there were a lot, weren't able to help that much in saving the movie to a point that it has become a comedy... that can be played by anybody. Whoo, thank God for Derek Ramsay -- his face and his body!

But I don't want to be that mean. I must say that I still had good laughs specially on scenes that were just so odd or silly. Maybe I just expected too much from the movie, from Vice, and when it was not fully achieved, it turned into.. somehow, disappointment.