CineFilipino: Gender-bending story that’s ‘Straight to the Heart’
What if a gay man gets into a coma and wakes up a straight guy?
In “Straight to the Heart”, the life of a handsome gay hairdresser Eric (Carl Guevarra) turns topsy-turvy after meeting an accident and waking up attracted to women.
The film, directed and written by Frank David Fabros, is one of the nine full-length features in competition at the CineFilipino Film Festival this month.
“He (Eric) has other gay salon colleagues, including his lesbian best friend (Jeans, played by Gwen Zamora). They all live a happy life until this accident came along,” said Fabros in an interview with INQUIRER.net.
The director admitted that the movie is pure fantasy as he has wondered about all the funny possibilities that could form the storyline.
“It has a very funny premise that I built on. With all these people getting amnesia…what if they forget their gender? The story is just so unique and funny and I really latched on to that,” he said.
In the film, Eric radically changes into a sex-obsessed arrogant guy who will disrespect his close friends and even beat up an ex-boyfriend in public.
“It got doses of drama and comedy, and sprinklings of inspirational and spiritual (elements). I needed the film to be significant to anybody who is going see it,” he said.
Fabros was clear on saying that “Straight to the Heart” is not a “campaign piece” for LGBT rights. “It is a world where gender doesn’t matter anymore. It’s about accepting that we are all here, and it (being gay) is not already an issue.”
“The film is relatable because it shows other points of view, from gay and straight people and from people who don’t care what your gender is,” he added.
The other members of the cast include Ricci Chan (Rich), Vincent de Jesus (Lenard), Nico Antonio (Joey), Kiko Matos (Cheska), Dina Padilla (Dina), Cris Lomotan (Franco) and Gilleth Sandico (Sophie).
Chan, who played for two films in the same festival (the other one with Buhay Habangbuhay), expressed his take on the movie.
“Differences are differences whether you are straight, gay…whether you are ugly or beautiful. Our treatment towards other people doesn’t differ with whatever aspect of difference they have. For instance, you are mad at someone because he’s gay. It is not because he is gay but because he is different from you,” he said.
“I think that’s the overwhelming theme of the movie. That we should not learn to tolerate but we should learn to understand,” he said.
“This is for all those people who are ashamed of themselves, who can’t accept who they are…for those who get violated and disrespected,” Matos chimed in.
For its second edition this March 16-22, CineFilipino will showcase other finalists in the feature-length competition: Carla Marie Baful’s “A Lotto Like Love”; Randolph Longjas’ “Van Damme Stallone”; Lemuel Lorca’s “Ned’s Project”; Ice Idanan’s “Sakaling Hindi Makarating”; Jason Paul Laxamana’s “Ang Taba Ko Kasi”; Alvin Yapan’s “Ang Tulay Ng San Sebastian”; Dexter Hemedez and Allan Ibañez’s “1st Sem”; and Paolo Alessandro Herras’ “Buhay Habangbuhay”.
Presented by PLDT-Smart, MediaQuest and Unitel, the film festival will run at Gateway Cineplex, Edsa Shangri-la Cineplex, Greenhills Theater Mall Cinema, New Port Cinemas, Robinsons Galleria, Robinsons Manila, Robinsons Metro East and Eastwood Cinemas.
MARCH 16, WEDNESDAY
12:30-2:05 pm | Shangri-La Plaza
6:25-8:00 pm | Eastwood Cinemas
8:30-10:05 pm | Greenhills Theater Mall
MARCH 17, THURSDAY
2:45-4:20 pm | Robinson’s Galleria
4:20-5:55 pm | Gateway Mall A
8:15-10:05 pm | (Gala Night) Gateway Mall B
8:30-10:05pm | Newport Cinemas-RWM
MARCH 18, FRIDAY
2:20-3:55 pm | Festival Mall
5:15-6:50 pm | Robinson’s Metro East
MARCH 19, SATURDAY
2:15-3:50 pm | Shangri-La Plaza
4:45-6:20 pm | Greenhills Theater Mall
6:30-8:05 pm| Gateway Mall A
MARCH 20, SUNDAY
2:20-3:55 pm | Robinson’s Galleria
4:05-5:40 pm | Festival Mall
4:45-6:00 pm | Gateway Mall B
6:25-8:00 pm | Newport Cinemas-RVM
MARCH 21, MONDAY
12:05-1:40 pm | Eastwood Cinemas
12:15-1:50 pm | Robinson’s Metro East
6:25-8:00 pm | Shangri-la Plaza
8:30-10:05 pm | Gateway Mall A
MARCH 22, TUESDAY
2:15-3:50 pm | Eastwood Cinemas
2:00-3:35 pm | Gateway Mall B
4:10-5:45 pm | Greenhills Theater Mall
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