WE hope a local free TV channel will show that 2013 docu by the Discovery Channel shown as evidence in the congressional hearings, “Inside the Gangster’s Code”, hosted by Lou Ferrante. It proves our government then has given up its control on the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP). Prisoner and gang leader JB Sebastian was like a mob boss or godfather inside the NBP. He welcomes Lou in his own luxurious air conditioned office where he had photos of former President Noynoy Aquino and now Senator Leila de Lima and many alalays to attend to his guest. He even brags that they have an armory of weapons, saying “I wish I could show it to you. You won’t believe it.”
We wish more people could watch this docu as it’s more damning than the evidence of the other crime lords. After seeing it, you’d understand why Duterte had to call in the SAF (Special Action Force) to regain control over the prisoners.
About Herbert Colanggo, you could see he enjoys being interviewed on TV, even bragging that his own office or prison cell in NBP is comparable to those of top politicians and is like a suite in Shangri-La Hotel with a 5-star toilet. Using the name Herbert C, he was able to build up his own career as a recording artist with his own recording studio while inside the NBP, held his own concerts and even won an award from the Star Awards for Music as best new recording artist. (Everyone is asking: how much?) We don’t know how any government official can deny all these damning evidences that people now generally accept to be true.
KLARISSE RECALLS DAYS WITH SARAH: SHE DIDN'T REMEMBER
KLARISSE De Guzman first joined a singing contest when she was only 11 years old, “Star for a Night”, where Sarah Geronimo, then 14, emerged as the grand winner. Several years later, she would join “The Voice Philippines” and little did she know that Sarah would be her coach. Did Sarah recognize her when they saw each other again?
“No, kasi sobrang bata pa naman ako noon, naka-pigtails pa ako,” she says. “It’s only when I told her that ako si Klang, which was my nickname then, doon lang niya naalala.”
How is Sarah as a coach? “Coach Sarah is so mabait. Walang ereng big star na siya. Up to now, she’d give me advice, like when I joined Himig Handog, she helped me interpret my piece. Even sa personal life, nag-a-advice siya sa’kin, like how to handle problematic relatives.”
So what did she do between “Star for a Night” and “The Voice”? “I went back to school, taking up music production, sa St. Benilde. Every now and then, sumasali pa rin ako, like sa ‘X Factor’, ‘Talentadong Pinoy’, hindi naman ako nakukuha. Siguro hindi pa talaga time and I’m really meant for ‘The Voice’. But before I joined ‘The Voice’ nagpapayat muna ako kasi tumaba ako noon, e.”
She’s first runner up to Jason Dy and she also got her own self titled album with MCA Records, a combination of the songs she performed in “The Voice” and some original numbers. Including her own composition, “Di Kayang Pilitin”. She now performs with Jason and “The Voice Kids” JK Labajo in a special concert, “One Voice”, to be held at Music Museum on Saturday, October 1.
“We did some brainstorming with our musical director, Marvin Querido, to find out what songs we’d include in the show. We’ll do solos, duets and trios, plus medleys, and of course I’ll do my signature birit songs from Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Lani Misalucha and Jaya. Basta, we’re sure will love and enjoy what we’ve prepared for them.”
Produced by Hills and Dreams, get your tickets for “One Voice” from Ticketworld at 891-9999.
LUIS RETURNS TO THE KAPAMILYA NETWORK
LUIS Alandy was just seen with Judy Ann Santos in the Cinemalaya entry, “Kusina”. He’s now one of Nathalie Hart’s leading men in the erotic drama “Siphayo (Dismay)”. Does he think Nathalie deserve to be launched in this movie? “Oo naman,” he says. “I can say she’s ripe for stardom. Matagal na rin siyang umaarte on TV and film and we can say she has paid her dues. Maganda naman siya at magaling pang umarte.”
In “Siphayo”, Luis and Joem Bascon play the sons of Allan Paule and their mom is Maria Isabel Lopez, who’s suffering from a terminal illness. Allan got Nathalie to be Maria Isabel’s personal nurse. After his wife died, Allan then cohabits with Nathalie as his wife’s replacement. Nathalie becomes a very young stepmother to Luis and Joem, later on also seducing them and going to bed with the father and his sons to make it a shame and scandal in the family.
“Medyo kontrobersiyal ang theme nito but it’s well handled by Direk Joel Lamangan,” says Luis. “When the MTRCB previewed the movie, nagustuhan nila at pinuri ang acting ng buong cast so it’ll be shown without cuts.”
Luis is also busy on TV. After doing soaps with GMA, he’s now back on ABS-CBN in the afternoon soap, “The Greatest Love”. He plays Chad, the husband of Amanda, played by Dimples Romana. “I’m glad to be a Kapamilya again. Una akong nakilala when I did the first ‘Pangako Sa’Yo’ with Jericho Rosales and Kristine Hermosa in 2000. 2006 ako lumipat sa GMA and now, ten years later, back to ABS-CBN na uli ako and it’s nice to be part of good show like ‘The Greatest Love’ with Sylvia Sanchez.”
MOVIE REVIEW: THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN
ONE of the most memorable westerns of our youth is “The Magnificent Seven” in 1960 (along with “The Searchers”, “Shane”, “The Fastest Gun Alive”, “The Hellions”), directed by John Sturges with its unforgettable theme music that was later used in the Marlboro Country commercials. It was so popular it even spawned a local version, “Dakilang Siyam”, also a western with the late FPJ and members of the then popular LoWaist Gang. The Hollywood western is actually a remake of the acclaimed 1954 Japanese film, “Seven Samurai”, by legendary director Akira Kurosawa. We now realize how old we are since many movies of our youth are being remade, like "Ben Hur", which flopped miserably.
Now comes "The Magnificent Seven" remake by Antoine Fuqua (“Training Day”, “The Equalizer”, “Southpaw”). The original starred Yul Brynner as the leader, with Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, Robert Vaughn, James Coburn, Horst Buchholz and Brad Dexter who all later became leading men. The new version stars Denzel Washington (there’s no black guy in the original), Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D’Onofrio (the villain in “Daredevil”), and a multiracial cast with Oriental actor Lee Byung Hun, Latino actor Manuel Garcia Rulfo and Native American Martin Sensmeier.
Set shortly after the American Civil War, it’s about the town of Rose Creek which is harassed by Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard), a greedy and ruthlessly violent white mining capitalist (in contrast to the original’s Hispanic bandido) who wants its people to sell their land to him at a much lower price. He burns their church and vows to return soon, so the residents, led by a redhead named Emma (Haley Bennett) whose husband (Matt Bomer), was killed by the villain, ask the help of seven gunmen to help them fight their tormentors.
The leader is Sam Chisholm (Denzel), a stoic bounty hunter; then there’s Josh Faraday (Chris), a gambler who’s good at explosives; Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan), a sharpshooting veteran of the Civil War known as the Angel of Death; Jack Horne (Vincent), a frontiersman and tracker who’s the oldest in the group; Billy Rocks (Byung-hun), a Korean assassin good with blades; Vasquez (Manuel), a Mexican outlaw; and Red Harvest (Martin), a very buff Comanche warrior.
So many good actors were assembled for this movie (Chris Prat is a scene stealer with his wisecracks and magic tricks and Sarsgaard chews the scenery as evil personified Bogue) and in all fairness, it’s quite efficiently made, especially the Asian fighter throwing his knives at the bad guys and the Native American guy using his arrows without missing a shot. But still, in these days of revisionist westerns, particularly those made by Quentin Tarantino (“Django Unchained”, “The Hateful 8”), this certainly pales in comparison and looks more like a generic, old fashioned western. But those who like violence will enjoy it as Fuqua makes sure he injects a violent scene or two every ten minutes to make sure we won’t be bored by the slow buildup while waiting for the climactic shootout between the Seven versus Bogue and his heavily armed thugs.
The rousing finale showdown won’t disappoint action fans as it’s a much bigger battle compared to the one shown 56 years ago. The Seven prepare a slambang gathering of booby traps and violent surprises for the bad guys who come along with a Gatling gun. We just wish we viewers were given more cause to like and make a connection with the seven lead characters so we could sympathize more with all of them.
Musical director James Horner passed while doing this movie and someone took over to finish his job. Don’t be surprised when you hear the music of composer Elmer Bernstein’s iconic score from the original being used in the soundtrack, which helps remind us all the more than the 1960 version is really a much simpler but quite a better one than this remake.