Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Rome & Juliet (2006, Connie Macatuno)

If you are itching to watch a film from the QueerLoveFest event at indieSine, then please consider Rome & Juliet. It is still one of the best products of the Cinema One Originals competition.

I remember watching this unusual romantic film on Valentine’s Day in 2007. The indieSine theater at Robinsons Movieworld Galleria was chock-full of lesbian couples of all sizes and types. The audience was generally quiet during the screening, but there were a few comments about the English subtitles. There was a smattering of applause at the end of the movie. The happy faces of exiting moviegoers say a lot about their approval of the debut film of Connie Macatuno.

The movie's premise is that love knows no gender. Juliet Flores (Andrea del Rosario) is a preschool teacher waiting and praying for the one who will be her life partner. She asks for a sign from God. To her surprise, her politician boyfriend Marc Villanueva (Rafael Rosell) asks her to marry him. She accepts his proposal.

There are problems, though. Juliet still has not iron out her differences with Marc. She hates tying up her hair in order to please him. She is not yet ready to have a baby. And, florist Rome Miranda (Mylene Dizon) enters the world of Juliet.

The seed of love between Rome and Juliet is nurtured slowly. The two friends get to discover and accept each other, warts and all, from the very start. They have similar interest in cooking and poetry. They share secrets and important feelings. They connect on all levels.

The baring of secrets and baring of one's soul are the best parts of the award-winning script of Macatuno. The film shows how difficult and awkward it is to bare one's heart. Juliet is ostracized by her mother and co-workers because of her love for Rome. But, she never gives up on that love. She backs out from her wedding with Marc.

The direction by Macatuno was a good one. There may have been a few problems with crowd control but her handling of the actors was almost perfect. Mylene Dizon and Andrea del Rosario gave wonderful, sizzling hot performances. Their mere glances were smoldering. It helps that they were given full characters to portray. Rosell won an acting award from the Manunuri ng Pelikulang Pilipino.

I’m wondering though why Macatuno hasn’t come up with her second film. It’s been four years since the Cinema One Originals screening of her debut film. Will she be destined to be a one-hit wonder?


  1. what a lovely description on this film

  2. i have seen the movie.. my only complaint is that it's too long (but already watched it a couple ot times).. but story wise, it's good. nice post.