‘BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story’ Grand Press Conference plus exclusive interview with Robin Padilla

/ 12:05 AM January 29, 2019

Efren Reyes, Jake Joson, Joko Diaz and Robin Padilla. Photo by Joseph R. Atilano

When a movie is being made of someone’s life, it is best that the actor selected to portray the subject person has a larger than life personality and someone most everyone knows. This is the case in Robin Padilla’s characterization of ‘BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story’.

Here, Robin Padilla portrays General Bato, the former PNP Chief, who has seen more than his fair share of gunfights, threats to his life, and reckless political controversies thrown at him. And how did these come to pass for General Bato, you ask? It is because of what General Bato has done to help the then Mayor of Davao–now President Rodrigo Roa Duterte–to uphold peace and order in his native hometown in Davao for many, many years long before the rest of the nation would know of General Bato. And then by divine destiny, as it would seem, he would be handpicked and tasked again by President Duterte to address criminality, drug epidemic, and lawlessness for the entire country, this time, with the same objective, courageous, no-nonsense and iron-fisted approach that has effectively brought the peace and  order that Davao is famously known for locally and internationally.


Robin Padilla is the correct choice to portray General Bato because from the side of showbiz realm you will need an actor who is a veteran of Pinoy action movies–indeed, only an action star–who can do his own stunts and provide exciting and exhilarating action sequences for the moviegoers. And, most of all, he must be an actor whose name is synonymous with Pinoy action genre. Who better can that be than Robin Padilla who has been in the local movie industry for decades and still can “bring it on” to the big screen? Why, Robin Padilla is a true action-star! He is an icon of Philippine Cinema.

Interestingly, General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa and Robin Padilla are, in fact, good friends in real life and they have known each other for some time already long before this movie got greenlit and began production.  Indeed, the signs were all there that this movie is meant to happen. It is like all the stars had aligned for the making of “BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story”!


I, for one, am a fan of action movies, whether they be local and foreign. Action movies will always have a special place in the hearts of moviegoers. I am very much looking forward to do watching ‘BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story’ because it has been a long time since a local action-packed movie like this has been released. And I am a big fan of General Bato!

The official full-length trailer alone made the hair on my arms stand on end because it was like I was watching “old school” clips of classic Robin Padilla movies from the 90’s. The guy has not aged much and he has kept himself in excellent physical form. Most noteworthy is that Robin Padilla still has that unmistakable “tough-guy” image and presence about him that you know only a real, legitimate, and proven action star can possess.

Upon first glance, the both of them obviously do not  look alike, and I am referring to General Bato and Robin Padilla. However, any good actor, to do an effective portrayal of a subject he must go beyond the physical similarities between them. He should be able to give a strong and convincing performance and portrayal of the subject by way of attitude, behavior, personality, and the spirit of the subject person that the actor must necessarily embody in order that moviegoers will only see, as in this particular movie, General Bato and not Robin Padilla at all.

Jake Joson, Joko Diaz and Robin Padilla. Photo by Joseph R. Atilano

A lot of time, effort, and heart were put into the making of ‘BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story’ as the best as it can be on all aspects because this movie has veterans and well-respected figures of Pinoy action movies working in front of the camera and behind the scenes in order to help bring back the action genre here in the Philippines with a loud resounding bang. Plus, they are joined by the new generation of actors who will help keep the action genre alive and well into the next decade.

‘BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story’ is comprised of an all-star cast: Robin Padilla, Beauty Gonzales, Alvin Anson, Archie Alemania, Alyssa Muhlach, Chanel Morales, Efren Reyes, Gardo Versoza, Gina Alajar, Jess Mendoza, Joko Diaz, Jun Hidalgo, Kiko Matos, Manuel Chua, Marx Topacio, Menggie Cobrarrubias, Mon Confiado, Polo Ravales, and Ricky Davao.

‘BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story’ is produced by ALV Films and Benchingko Films, and is distributed by Regal Entertainment, Inc.

Jake Joson, Joko Diaz, Robin Padilla and Kiko Estrada. Photo by Joseph R. Atilano

This movie is directed by Director Adolf Alix, Jr.


‘BATO: The Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa Story’ is set for a nationwide release on January 30, 2019.

Now, here are my questions for Robin Padilla, the main star of ‘BATO: The Gen. Dela Rosa Story’.

1) QUESTION: Sa palagay mo, ano sa ugali mo, o mga katangian mo, o pananaw mo sa buhay na masasabi mong puwede mo ihambing kay General Bato na nakatulong sa iyo na mailarawan mong maayos si General Bato sa sineng ito ?

ROBIN PADILLA: Takot sa asawa ! Si General Bato, sabi niya hanggang 4 star lang daw siya, eh ! Yung asawa niya, 5-star general siya ! Kahit ano mangyari, hindi siya puwede ganun…na awayin niya asawa niya. Hindi naman dahil masama yun, kundi commitment kasi yun. Commitment yung nang isang tunay na lalaki talaga !

Robin Padilla, Kiko Estrada, Alyssa Muhlach and Kiko Matos. Photo by Joseph R. Atilano

2) QUESTION: Sa kabilang dako, ano naman yun naging pinakamalaking challenge para sa iyo habang ginagawa mo itong sine tungkol kay General Bato ?

ROBIN PADILLA: Sanay tayo sa mga criminal, eh ! So yung stunts natin… minsan fighting stunts natin, pang criminal. Yan yung binabantayan ng aking stunt team. Dun lang yun, pero sa buhay, sa outlook sa buhay, sa prinsipyo… iisa kami ni Bato. Wala ako problema dun. Dun lang sa kilos. Talagang dun lang sa kilos. Kasi si General Bato ay police. Ako naman ay isang police character in real life.

3) QUESTION: Dahil hindi kayo magkahambing ni General Bato sa physical appearance, ano sa isip mo ang ginagawa mo na lubus-lubusan para mapaniwala sa moviegoers na walang kaduda-duda na masasabi nila sa sarili nila: “Ah, si General Bato nga ito!”, habang nanunuod sila nitong sine tungkol kay General Bato ?

ROBIN PADILLA: Makikita mo yun sa mata kasi nag-iisa yung motivation namin ni General Bato. Wala kami pinagkaiba sa katulad nang sinabi ko sa buhay. Pagtinanong niyo, hindi naman ako kasing laki pero yung intensity maniniwala ka si Bato yun.

Joko Diaz and Robin Padilla. Photo by Joseph R. Atilano

Lalo na sa oras ng pag-ibig dahil, si General Bato, talaga ‘tol, very soft talaga ang kanyang puso at atsaka comedian talaga siya. Parang din siya si Mayor Duterte pag meron joke ! Ganun din siya. So, parehong-pareho kami. Walang pagka-iba. Yun nga lang talaga, sinabi talaga sa akin ng Director ko, dalawa lang ang kailangan mo pag-aralan kahit hindi natin ma-perfect, pero kailangan maniwala ang tao dun. Yung lakad, Number 1. At yun pag-iyak ni Bato. Kasi, pinag-aralan naming yun sa Senate hearing. Yung pag-iyak niya dun Senate. Pati yung bilang niya dun yung pag-punas sa mata niya. Kasi dun mo makikita yun. Yun po, sa dalawang eksena na yun.

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