Television station TV5 screens local independent films every Wednesday night at 9 pm. One of the best films shown in October 2009 is Khavn de la Cruz’s Paalam Aking Bulalakaw (Goodbye My Shooting Star).
So far, this is the only film of Khavn that I truly love. Yes, that's the proper term: love. This film deals with all permutations of that powerful four-letter word. This is also an ode to the people, food, icons, and landmarks of the University of the Philippines. And, it took an Atenean to show the charms of the national university.
Just what it is in the waters of Ateneo? Brilliant Atenean filmmakers Khavn and John Torres create unconventional films (Paalam Aking Bulalakaw and Todo Todo Teros) that make you fall in love, or if you’re already in love, will make you love more. They blend picturesque poems with poetic pictures. They conjure images of pretty, smart ladies in their stories. If John had Russian student Olga, then Khavn has Pinay actress Ana Maria.
Ana Maria (played by Meryll Soriano) is a frustrated violin player still hurting from her break-up with an American boyfriend. She meets up with friend K one afternoon because it was getting to be a bore at home. The duo starts their tour of the University of the Philippines at Sunken Garden.
A cool, loony optometrist teases K about his crush for Ana. He answers that having a crush is against his religion. It had been years but K wasn’t ready to reveal his feelings for Ana. Not yet, anyway.
The young man drops subtle hints by bringing up the subject of love frequently. He asks friends what they thought about love. Egay states that sex is a better trip than love. Elmo says love is an amalgam of hate, lust, and sex. Ana opines that love is sadness and happiness in one person.
But, for K, love is Ana. This unrequited love of K shows up in his heart-wrenching songs and poems. And, boy, are they potent! Songs dealt with shooting stars, lonely moon, wanting, and eternal devotion. On the other hand, poems tackled endless waiting, love letters, and goodbyes.
This extraordinary film shows the wildly romantic side of Khavn. A devastating blend of hardcore mushy songs and heart-core poems will also bring out the hopeless romantic in you. Sheesh! Just when you thought you were over that special someone, this film will make you pine for her/him.
So, still interested in this achingly beautiful film? Proceed with caution. You’ve been warned!