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REVIEW: Zombadings 1 (Patayin sa Shokot si Remington)

*spoiler alert!

It was my first time to watch a Cinemalaya movie, and I'm glad it gave a good impression through Jade Castro's "Zombadings 1: Patayin sa Shokot si Remington". (Why it's Zombadings 1, not sure. So maybe there's a part 2?)


Judging from its title, one can easily say that this movie might be about homosexuals, the pros, the antis -- the fear. Partly true, as it is about a gay-hater boy (Remington - Martin Escudero) who was cursed by Pops (Roderick Paulate) that he will turn into gay when he grew up. After several years, the curse has slowly taken its place affecting the way he acts and speaks, his feelings and preference. The twist on how the Zombadings (gay zombies) exist came later on.

More than the effort to label it as horror, comedy or romance, the film has much to say. The elaborate gay language (don't worry, there's a subtitle), the gay-dar (gay radar) that finally came true, the not-so-for-kids scenes, and even the existence of the zombadings where the title was taken, are just excess ingredients to give flavor and sustain the appeal, yet enough to subtly kick-in some main points, not in the movie, but in the norm of the public. Stereotyping of gays, homosexuality in priesthood, and homophobic machos are just some aspects carefully disguised in humor to strike a reflection of the society, hitting the viewers' awareness in an almost painless way.

*The Cast*

I never knew about Martin Escudero not until I saw him in the film. From a "who's-this-actor" to an "oh-i-love-him" quickly transpires throughout the movie. I admire how he managed to give a distinct shift from a typical straight man to a confused gay, without looking awkward on the role. Kerbie Zamora, another actor I just knew from the movie, might have gained enough charisma from both girls and gays after his effective portrayal as Remington's best bud, and almost-partner. Roderick Paulate would always be best to portray the "queen" gay with his established image and effortless acting. Eugene Domingo, with her minimal role, still managed to yield the most laugh from the audience. Perfect timing, great delivery, Eugene is one of my favorite comediennes! Worth mentioning also is John Regala. I have always seen him in his manly action star roles, so seeing him in a totally opposite role of being gay was a surprise in the end. By the way, there are also a lot of should-i-say "cameo" appearances in the film (Marian Rivera, Bayani Agbayani, etc).