My Little Bossings is as sad as things get during the Metro Manila Film Festival. It is one of those films that are just barely put together, banking entirely on the presence of a couple of recognizable names. There's no art to it, or any craft; no effort exerted beyond the minimum necessary to create something that might be called a movie. This one barely achieves that distinction, held together as it is by an abundance of filler and product placement. It is far less than the public deserves.
Torky (Vic Sotto) is the bookkeeper for the rich and successful Barbara (Kris Aquino). Barbara's half-sister Marga (Jaclyn Jose) is setting her up to take the fall for a pyramid scheme, threatening serious harm if she denies the charges. Barbara asks Torky to take care of her son Justin (Bimby Aquino) and keep him safe while she looks for a way to counter her sister. Meanwhile, Torky's estranged daughter Aiza (Aiza Seguerra) arrives at his home with orphan Ching (Ryzza Mae Dizon) in tow. The four are forced to coexist under one roof, but with Ching and Justin coming from such different worlds, and bad blood still existing between Torky and Aiza, getting along isn't so easy.
The concept isn't terrible. The execution, however, is pretty terrible. The film doesn't commit to having a plot. It meanders through a mess of random scenes, with no sense of urgency or forward direction. It isn't clear what Barbara is doing to clear her name, or what the villains are really trying to do to achieve their plans. The film plays out a bit of family drama in the relationship between Torky and his daughter, but that feels awfully out of place in between the rampant kookiness.
What's clear is that the entire film was rushed through production. It's also pretty obvious that people were less concerned about telling a story than selling products. The film regularly stops everything for blatant product placement. Aiza Seguerra shills for Ariel detergent. Bimby Aquino eats a whole plate of Lucky Me Pancit Canton. Vic Sotto teaches us the difference between two kinds of Solmux available in the market. The story starts feeling like an afterthought, its emotional core lost in a wave of vulgar commercialism.
The cast mainly sleeps through the project. Vic Sotto can be a charismatic presence on screen, but he has to be trying somewhat. And he just isn't. Aiza Seguerra has a couple of good scenes in her, but the film refuses to help her out. The film overestimates the appeal of its two young leads. Bimby Aquino doesn't always seem present in his scenes. And Ryzza Mae Dizon has a very limited bag of tricks.
My Little Bossings is an insult. We have plenty of films that are bad, but it is the rare film that seems to show contempt for its audience. This film refuses to try. It doesn't even attempt to hide the product placement within the context of a plot-driven scene. Apparently, the film thinks that its audiences don't deserve the effort to at least blunt the sting of overt commerce. It is a shame that this year, this is the only G rated picture in the bunch. The Filipino family deserves much more than this.