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Ang Panday

Philippines 2009
produced by
Jose Mari Abacan, Andrea M. Bautista, Rowena Mendiola, Marlon Bautista (executive), Annette Gozon Abrogar (executive), Elaine Lozano (supervising) for GMA Films, Imus Productions
directed by Mac Alejandre
starring Ramon 'Bong' Revilla jr, Phillip Salvador, Iza Calzado, Rhian Ramos, Geoff Eigenmann, Robert Villar, Joonee Gamboa, Luz Valdez, Benjie Paras, Gladys Guevarra, Carlene Aguilar, Marissa Sanchez, John Lapus, King Gutierrez, Stef Prescott, Paulo Avelino, Carlos Morales, Pekto, John Feir, Dan Fernandez, Carlo Lacana, Ace Espinosa, Anne Curtis
screenplay by R.J. Nuevas, based on the comicbook created by Carlos J.Caparas, music by Von de Guzman, visual effects by Rico Gutierrez

Ang Panday, Ang Panday (Ramon 'Bong' Revilla jr)

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Evil wizard Lizardo (Phillip Salvador) has taken over the country and enslaved the populace, and only the hope that a prophecy will fulfill itself keeps the locals alive, a prophecy about a hero wielding a sword forged from a meteor. Only blacksmith Flavio (Ramon 'Bong' Revella jr) does not believe in the prophecy - and then the meteor lands right before his feet. To not make himself the hero of the prophecy, Flavio forges it into a dagger (instead of a sword) he intends to give his love interest Maria (Iza Calzado) - but then Lizardo's men attack the village and take Maria prisoner, to ultimately be married to Lizardo, and when Flavio fights against Lizardo's men, his dagger magically grows into a sword, and now he knows he's the hero of the legend after all - and apart from that he has to go to Lizardo's lair anyhow to free Maria. On his perilious journey, Flavio is accompanied by his boy sidekick Buboy (Robert Villar), Emelita (Rhian Ramos), a girl secretly in love with him who will ultimately give her life to save him, archer Celso (Geoff Eigenmann), and a flying dragon (those always come in handy, don't they?).

Flavio's first face-off with Lizardo ends in disaster, as the evil wizard blinds Flavio and even wants to kill him, only to be held back by Maria, who finally wills in to marry Lizardo in exchange for Flavio's life. Flavio's in luck though as he is given his eyesight back by a fairy. Then it's off to Lizardo's place again, and after he has killed all of the wizard's army more or less single-handedly, he goes against Lizardo himself - who apparently has the ability to turn himself into a giant snake ... but hey, Flavio doesn't have a flying dragon for nothing, right?

All ends well, in case you wondered.

 

The Ang Panday comicbook is wildly popular in the Philippines, and it has led to a variety of adaptations for both the big and the small screen, of course varying in quality. This is one of the lesser adaptations. Sure, it was an ambitious project made on a big budget (at least by Filipino standards) and filled with special effects ... but it has turned the story into a rather impersonal fantasy tale filled with age-old clichés, and too often the narrative is obscured by more and more CGI-effects that aren't even all that good. And all of this isn't making the movie bad as such, but (what's worse) just pretty dull, turning it into something you really don't have to see.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

Robots and rats,
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
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A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
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directed by
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written by
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starring
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out now on DVD