Misery loves company
We had high hopes for “Mr. & Mrs. Cruz,” but it didn’t take long for us to realize that director Sigrid Andrea Bernardo’s latest rom-com—about brokenhearted strangers Gela (Ryza Cenon) and Rafael (JC Santos) who find reassuring comfort in each other’s miserable company—is devoid of the effortless charm and less-is-more allure of “Kita Kita.”
The film is an interminable cinematic slog that needlessly thrives on the romantic upheavals of its loquacious characters, portrayed with annoying petulance by Ryza Cenon and JC Santos.
As they seek acceptance and closure in dreamy Palawan, they inexplicably laugh at humorless jokes and whine about issues that few people care about. Ryza is even seen wearing a guy’s used underwear as a bikini top and eating her own vomit—yes, we mean that literally—during one of her woefully inebriated spells. How repulsive can you get?
If facetiousness is Bernardo’s idea of storytelling innovation, perhaps to prudently veer away from formula, it’s best to spare yourself from this movie’s kooky comedic proclivity and “extreme” narrative persuasions.
The headache-inducing, walkout-worthy gabfest is more kadiri than kwela—but, at least JC and Ryza look like they don’t mind yakking their blues away until they turn cyanotic.
“Mr. & Mrs. Cruz” is an unsatisfying addition to Sigrid’s thematically diverse oeuvre, which is notable for the winsome lure of “Ang Huling Cha-Cha ni Anita,” the giddy excesses of “Lorna,” and the disarming froth of “Kita Kita.”
Given “Mr. & Mrs. Cruz’s” disappointing attributes, it’s interesting to note that even Alessandra de Rossi and Empoy Marquez, the unlikely leads of “Kita Kita,” are having difficulty parlaying that film’s phenomenal success into sustained box-office clout and cachet.
Alex’s self-penned “12” is a chatty but soporific cinematic sedative, while “Empoy’s comedic mishap “The Barker” is all bark and no bite. Let’s hope they crawl out of the slump any time soon.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.