ANNABELLE Rama got the surprise of her life when she got a call from Raffy Tulfo a few days ago saying her ex-driver is in his radio show complaining that Annabelle has not paid his wages.
“Ayoko sanang patulan kasi adik-adik 'yung driver kong 'yun, bale nang bale sa’kin ng suweldo at nang hindi ko pinagbigyan sa ina-advance niya, nagpunta kay Tulfo at binaligtad ang kuwento niya,” she says when we had dinner with her at Gloria Maris a few nights ago. “Pero sabi ng mga tauhan ni Tulfo, pa-interview na kayo para malinis ang pangalan nyo, kaya pinagbigyan ko sila.
I was interviewed sa phone at nandun sa studio 'yung driver. Sabi ko, lahat ng drivers ko, bayad. 'Yan, nag-advance 'yan lagi. Nang hindi ko pagbigyan, binaligtad ako sa inyo. Kinukuwestiyon siya ni Tulfo, e paiba-iba ang statements niya, so nainis sa kanya at pinaalis na lang siya. Grabe ang sad experiences ko sa mga nagtatrabaho sa’kin lately.
'Yung isang maid kong matagal na sa’kin, ninakaw yung 700 dollars sa wallet ni Richard. Sabi ko, ikaw lang ang allowed na pumasok sa kuwarto nina Richard kaya ikaw sigurado ang kumuha.
Noong una, ayaw pang umamin, pero nang sabi ko, tatawag ako ng pulis, umamin din. Awasin ko na lang daw sa suweldo niya. E, P10,000 na siya a month sa akin, e, nagnakaw pa. Pinakahuli, 'yung P.A. ko (production assistant), si Jet Gonzales, kilala n'yo yan dahil lagi kong kasama pag magdi-dinner tayo.
Two weeks ago, binayaran si Ruffa ng Cosmo Skin for her endorsement, P100,000, cash. Sabi ko, Jet, i-deposit mo nga sa account ni Ruffa. Kasi wala si Ruffa, nasa Ibiza sa Spain. 8 days later, bumalik si Ruffa, chineck ang bank account niya, walang pumasok na P100,000.
Ang pagkakamali ko, hindi ko na hiningi 'yung deposit slip kay Jet kasi tiwala na nga ako sa kanya. O ngayon, nagtatago na. Nag-file na ako ng reklamo against him and I warn all my contacts that he’s no longer connected to our company, Royale Era. Ang hirap, kahit anong bait mo sa kanila, nanakawan ka pa.”
We can sympathize with Annabelle as we ourselves have become a victim of “mandurugas” housemaids. One helper got P10,000 cash from our room and when she was fired, we didn’t know she got the credit card of our daughter when she left and was able to use it in various outlets, with purchases amounting to P40,000. Then, another maid stole the diamond earrings of our daughter worth P100,000 before she left ostensibly for a vacation in her home province. We even gave her P5,000 as baon for her family, without us knowing she has no intention of returning to us anymore as she has stolen our daughter’s earrings. So, beware! These days, it’s really hard to trust helpers you don’t really know much about.
DIREK MARYO J TELLS TOM TO BE RESTRAINED: HE'S HYPER
DIRECTOR Maryo J. de los Reyes is happy that “Someone to Watch Over Me” is assigned to him by GMA7. “The material is something different,” he says. “My last soap, ‘Pari Koy’, is about a young priest who brings changes into the lives of people around him. Ito naman is about love and sacrifice. Mahirap gawin kasi it’s about early onset Alzheimer’s disease, which is so negative.
The challenge is how you can make it interesting and also entertaining for the viewers. We did a lot of research so the actors can thoroughly understand their roles and interpret them well. I’m lucky all of them, puro mahusay. For Tom Rodriguez as TJ, the Alzheimer’s patient, the challenge is for him to tone down his energy. He’s so hyper so he has to be more restrained.
I want him to do a quiet delivery of his scenes for it to be more felt, more deeply rooted.
Lovi Poe is very good as the wife, Joanna, who sticks to her husband at hindi talaga tinalikuran 'yung commitment niya rito na sa harap ng altar na in sickness and in health, till death do us part, she will stand by him. Maraming magandang family values ang ipapakita namin dito sa respective families nina Tom and Lovi.”
The pilot episode tonight will show how Lovi and Tom meet in Vigan, where Lovi’s family lives. Tom is a visitor and Lovi unwillingly acts as his tourist guide in Vigan. It ends with Tom proposing marriage to Lovi. Lovi resists at first but when Tom returns in the next episode, he is already with his dad, Edu Manzano, and stepmom, Jackielou Blanco. They soon get married but in front of the altar, Tom experiences his first bout of Alzheimer’s when the priest ask him about Lovi and he forgets his answer. Even in his office, Tom starts forgetting about a lot of things. Lovi gets pregnant and they’re so happy to have their first baby. But when Lovi is about to deliver their child, Tom forgets his way, figures in an accident and Lovi gives birth inside their car. His dad gets so worried about his condition. By the time the week ends, his being forgetful gets worse as he gets disoriented while driving and doesn’t know where he is going.
MOVIE REVIEW: DON’T BREATHE
WE went to “Don’t Breathe” prepared not to like it because we know from its trailer that the lead characters are thieves who went to the house of a defenseless blind man to rob him. How can we sympathize with them?
But Director Fede Alvarez (“Evil Dead”, “Panic Attack”) certainly knows what he is doing to hook our attention. The lead character is a young woman named Rocky (Jane Levy, “Evil Dead”), who robs the houses of rich people in Detroit with her boyfriend, Money (Daniel Zovatto), and friend Alex (Dylan Minette), who’s obviously also in love with her. Alex’s father works in a security company for private homes, so he has access to keys that give them the chance to break into homes easily.
Rocky is not really that evil. She comes from a broken home, her mother being an irresponsible whore, and she has a little sister to whom she wants to give a better future. Her boyfriend Money cooks up a crime that can change their lives for good. In an abandoned community in Detroit, there lives a blind man (Stephen Lang, “Avatar”) who is alone in his home in the deserted neighborhood. His only daughter died in a car accident and he was paid about $300,000 as cash settlement. Money believes that such a huge amount is waiting for them in the blind’s man home and they can just go and take it. Easy. No sweat.
But as we all know, the best laid plans are often not really the best ones after all. It turns out they underestimated the blind man as he is not at all helpless, being a war veteran who certainly knows how to defend his home from the invasion of these thugs. The first casualty is Money and we feel no sympathy for him as he is portrayed as a good-for-nothing hoodlum from the start, even urinating on the floor of the home they were robbing in the opening scene. When the blind man kills him, we even say “Buti nga sa’yo. You deserve it.”
But when it comes to Alex, we have some reservations because you can see he’s really a nice guy at heart. He was on his way out to leave Money and Rocky after he finds out that Money is carrying a gun. And yes, Rocky gets our sympathy as we know she’s not doing it out of greed but to help her kid sister and take her to a new life in California.
Of course, it’s wrong to root for someone who’s stealing money from a reclusive blind man, but we do, because it turns out the blind man himself has a deep dark secret like the bad guys in “10 Cloverfield Lane” and “Room”. So the moral dilemma in Rocky’s character is not really that complex after all and we shift our loyalty from the invaded blind man to her.
In a tight thriller like this, establishing the film’s claustrophobic geography is very important and the director does it beautifully with impressive camera work using unbroken dolly and tracking shots that clearly demonstrate to us the space between the characters that is so vital in this kind of confined and limited set-up. Another amazing sweeping shot is the one where the camera goes under the bed of the blind man to ominously show a gun that will obviously be used later.
The acting is quite remarkable. Jane Levy is quite fearless in doing very physical scenes and she manages to make us care for her even if her character is only sketchily developed. Stephen Lang is at first looking very harmless as the blind man but turns out to be a deadly and menacing predator as the film unfolds. As we get to know more about him, the more he becomes terrifying.
Many gripping scenes are created with a lot of tension as they play a deadly cat and mouse game, especially in the scary basement sequence when the blind man turns off all the lights ala-”Wait Until Dark”. Viewers who enjoy thrillers, horror flicks and lots of violence surely won’t be disappointed. This works better for us than the stupid “Lights Out” and “The Purge” franchise.
And yes, there is also a ferocious Rottweiler dog that provides much shock value to make your heart beat faster in a number of high adrenaline scenes that are full of palpable and pulse-pounding urgency. If we have a complaint, it’s a plot twist in the final act that requires much suspension of disbelief. Someone we thought is dead turns out to be still alive and it appears they’re doing this in case there would be a sequel. And from the looks of it, there just might be as “Don’t Breathe” is proving to be such a big blockbuster as it’s currently the numero uno movie in the U.S. box office.