Movie Review: Hitman

Produced by CM Flms, Inc. and distributed by Viva Films, “HITMAN” is the 2nd Filipino action film to come out after “Manila Kingpin: The Asiong Salonga Story” of the 2011 Metro Manila Film Festival.

A lot of movie enthusiasts were thrilled when they heard about the news of a Cesar Montano film coming out in the first quarter of 2012. People eagerly waited for its scheduled release specially those who have missed the pinoy action film genre.   And with the great reviews received by the “Asiong Salonga” movie – everyone was hopeful for the permanent return of action films in Pinoy movies starting with “Hitman“.

The Plot:

Ben (Cesar Montano) a hitman who just woke up from a coma and recovering from memory loss met and fell in love with Gina (Sam Pinto), a print model not knowing that she’s the daughter of the man who masterminded the murder of his wife and the attempt on his life.  All hell breaks lose when he finally regained his memory.  To avenge here family’s death he has to face his mentor (Philip Salvador), kill the father of the woman he love (Ricky Davao) and choose between love and vengeance.

The movie started with a promising chase scene between Cesar Montano (Ben) and Philip Salvador (Tom) followed by a series of cascading narratives, dizzying scene shifts, flashbacks and out-of-this-world twists and turns that made the plot very confusing and hard to comprehend.

The problem with this movie is that there are a lot of things going on that just don’t connect with the plot.  A central character was not established and because the writers are trying to infuse everything in the movie, it has lost substance.

To put this in perspective and risking sounding like a spoiler, here are some of the things that I find in the film unappealing and confusing:

–   I can’t really say that Cesar Montano was the main character in the movie – It’s like Phillip Salvador got 30% , Ricky Davao with 5%, Joko Diaz with 10%, Sam Pinto with 15% and Mark Herras with 15%  which leaves him with only 25% of the lead character share. Now imagine how confusing the movie was because there is no real lead character. No anchor so to speak.
–  Lousy bed scene, you can feel that it’s really scripted or numbered.
–  Some very unimaginative scenes like when a handcuffed Sam Pinto tries to dial a cellphone using her foot and a pencil, or the time when Sam (again) and also Mark Herras magically appeared inside an old warehouse where Cesar and Philip ended up after a long chase.  There were a lot of scenes like that, scenes that defies basic logic.
– The chase scene was good at first but then it gets boring because no real action was happening during the chase just a lot of missed gun fire and a lot of running and jumping.
– I’m somewhat frustrated with the script. L

What I do love about the movie:

– Ricky Davao and Joko Diaz gave a very convincing acting performance as a father and son act.
– Cesar Montano and Philip Salvador look good together in the movie.  Hope they pair up again in another movie – one that has an excellent script this time.
– It’s a bit of an experimental, I always give credit to movies who try to be creative and experiment on things even if it they are not able to pull it off.  The effort makes it a movie still worth watching.

I want Pinoy Action Films to really make a come back in the cinemas and I will never stop supporting Filipino action films.  However, if they are indeed to make a comeback, I just wish that they make some efforts in making it more interesting for all the movie-goers.

HITMAN also stars Rommel Montano, Onchie Dela Cruz, Jeffrey Tam and introducing Diego Loyzaga Montano. Written and Directed by Cesar Montano. HITMAN is still showing in Philippine theaters.


Movie review by Blogger Ryan Ferdinand De Ocampo. Rain is a nurse by profession, a training facilitator and module developer for teamCITE, and blogger behind rainCHECK website.

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