- 1 hr 30 min
In the grand history of Philippine cinema, there are only a few movies that stand out above the rest. One of those movies is the 1981 gem, Kisapmata, directed by legendary Filipino filmmaker, Mike De Leon. The movie revolves around the lives of a tight-knit family consisting of a retired police officer named Arturo (played by Vic Silayan), his wife Esperanza (Charo Santos-Concio), and their daughter, Cecilia (Angelica Jones). Arturo, a once well-respected and honorable member of the police force, is now retired and spends his days as a strict and overbearing father to Cecilia.
Jay Ilagan plays the character of Hector, the eldest son of Arturo and Esperanza, who has recently returned to the family home with his new girlfriend, Baby (Hilda Koronel). As the story progresses, tensions rise within the family as old secrets and buried emotions come to the surface. Arturo's authoritarian ways come to a head when he meets Baby and becomes suspicious of Hector's intentions.
What follows is a harrowing tale of family tragedy and the slow unraveling of the mind of a man consumed by paranoia and madness. As Arturo's obsession with Hector and Baby escalates, it becomes clear that something sinister is afoot.
Kisapmata is an expertly crafted movie that explores themes of familial sacrifice, betrayal, and the corruption of power. The cinematography is stunning, featuring lush visuals that perfectly capture the looming sense of dread that permeates every scene. Mike De Leon's direction is masterful, expertly balancing moments of shocking violence with quiet and introspective moments of nuanced character development.
Charo Santos-Concio delivers a standout performance as Esperanza, the quiet and reserved mother who tries desperately to hold her family together in the face of Arturo's descent into madness. Vic Silayan is equally impressive as Arturo, masterfully portraying the character's slow descent into obsessive paranoia and madness.
The breakout star of the movie is Hilda Koronel as Baby, the young and innocent girlfriend of Hector who becomes the object of Arturo's obsession. Koronel's performance is electrifying, imbuing the character with a sense of vulnerability and strength that perfectly captures the essence of the movie's overarching themes.
Overall, Kisapmata is a must-see Filipino movie that stands the test of time. Its themes of familial tragedy and the corruption of power are universal and still resonant today. Mike De Leon's direction and the powerful performances of its cast make it a masterpiece of Philippine cinema that is not to be missed.