CORAZON, UNANG ASWANG – When we talk about horror films, we expect it to be full of suspense/terrifying scenes, blood, violence, lots of screaming and all that jazz. Star Cinema’s Corazon, Unang Aswang breaks that trend and gave the horror genre a twist. The traditional ingredients are still there but the film highlights the story more than anything else. Its one of the very few horror flicks that has depth and can be classified as a proper ‘film’ and when I say a proper film, something that can compete in festivals, various award-giving bodies, the quality is there, the commercial viability is there – a complete package!
One of Corazon’s biggest asset is the cinematography. Very crisp and exceptional – it mirrors reality and it kind of brings me back to the era where the storyline actually happened. The production design, the sound editing, the musical score – they all lined up perfectly giving this movie a very strong technical foundation. It is not the best to come out in the Filipino silver screen in terms of the production value but for a film concentrated in drama and horror, it is definitely one of the most outstanding to date. The acting is also brilliant. Erich Gonzales SHOULD win a Best Actress award for her performance – her character’s transition is a fantastic journey to watch out for. I love how Erich’s acting transformed from one phase to another, she’s natural, it was effortless, it was very convincing. I didn’t expect her to deliver such a powerful portrayal and I’d love to see her in future projects that’ll showcase her brilliance just like this. This is also the third time (in the last three months) that I’ve seen the great Tetchie Agbayani and I cannot fault her performance at all – her character here proves the fact that she is indeed one of the most versatile actresses in showbiz. Her scenes with Erich are some of the bests and you can really tell the clash of talent and excellence. Jeffrey Quizon, Mon Confiado and Sharlene San Pedro were also good and provided an amazing supporting cast. If there is only one mistake this film has, that would be the inclusion of Derek Ramsay in the cast – his acting was all over the place, he does not suit the role, he drags Erich into the pit during their moments together – WRONG CHOICE!!!
But all in all, it is my favourite Filipino film of the year so far. I’d love to watch it again and I don’t think I will get tired of witnessing how great this film is – the balance of technical excellence and Erich’s genuine performance – absolutely spot on! I recommend this to everyone, it is one of the Filipino films we can be really proud of.