What’s on HOOQ: 10 good PH films you may not know exist

In Games, Apps, and OS by Ramon LopezLeave a Comment

If you’ve seen Jerrold Tarog’s historical drama Heneral Luna, you may be wondering: Which local film should I see next?

Good question. Thankfully, there’s no shortage of amazing options on HOOQ, a subscription video-on-demand service that lets users watch local and Hollywood movies and TV shows on their phones or tablets for as little as P149 a month, or the equivalent of a tall Starbucks drink.

Today’s list includes 10 local releases you may not have heard of, but really should watch. So happy viewing and don’t forget to sound off in the comments with your thoughts on the items included in this post.

1. Metro Manila (2013)
Oscar Ramirez (Jake Macapagal) decides to move his family to the Philippine capital in a desperate bid to escape a difficult life in the rural north, only to find himself in more dire straits. (A quick aside: John Arcilla, aka Heneral Luna, also stars in this indie drama.)

2. RPG Metanoia (2010)
When Metanoia is thrown into chaos, Nico and his friends must muster all their courage to overcome doubt and save their beloved fantasy world. Don’t let the PG rating and 3D animation fool you; this film is so well-made for its time that even adults will find something interesting to keep an eye on.

3. Keka (2003)
Katya Santos is a beautiful call-center employee who seeks to avenge her boyfriend’s death in this black comedy directed by Quark Henares.

4. Radyo (2001)
An insane man stalks a female radio DJ for making fun of him on air when he tried to dedicate a song for an office crush. Yam Laranas directs Jeffrey Quizon and Ruffa Mae Quinto in this thriller.

5. Sigaw (2004)
Within days after settling into an apartment in an old, desolate building, Marvin (Richard Gutierrez) begins to question his sanity after bearing witness to supernatural events.

Today’s list includes 10 local releases you may not have heard of, but really should watch.

6. Hesus Rebolusyunaryo (2002)
Set in a dystopian Philippine society in the year 2011, Hesus Mariano (Mark Anthony Fernandez) is caught in the middle of warring factions and must decide where his allegiances lie. It’s rare for a local film to take on a science-fiction theme, but it’s even rarer to find one with deft political and philosophical commentary. For that I tip my hat to director Lav Diaz and the cast.

7. Istokwa (1996)
As the title suggests, the film tells the coming-of-age story of two young teens (Mark Anthony Fernandez and Spencer Reyes) who drive north to break from the mire of family dysfunction. It also has an amazing Eraserheads-headlined soundtrack that for many people — myself included — proved to be an introduction of sorts to alternative OPM music.

8. Gangland (1998)
Four highschool dropouts end up in over their heads and are left to face life on the streets. Jason Salcedo and Ryan Eigenmann star in this emotionally charged film from directors Peque Gallaga and Lore Reyes.

9. Pangako ng Kahapon (1994)
Director Joel Lamangan weaves an intricate tale of family drama involving three strong-willed sisters (Alice Dixson, Donna Cruz, Agot Isidro) who share the same father but different mothers.

10. Pridyider (2012)
A demonic, man-eating refrigerator terrorizes a balikbayan (Andi Eigenmann). Try not to laugh; if you can get past your knee-jerk reaction to a fiendish appliance, you’ll find that the movie can be fun as long as you’re willing to leave logic at the door. (And really, isn’t that the first thing we do before watching horror flicks?)

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Ramon Lopez

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Reviews editor: Ramon "Monch" Lopez has 16 years of professional experience creating and editing content for print and digital publications such as Yahoo. He headed the gadgets-merchandising division of one of the Philippines’ largest retail operators somewhere in between.