Plot: A fading young actress drowns her anger, sadness, frustrations, and regrets in a none-too-moderate intake of alcohol.
If "On Vodka, Beers, and Regrets" would want to be remembered as a romantic comedy (or drama), then I think it's not entirely successful. The film holds back the "kilig" or cheesy moments (which is rather a welcome touch), the love affair at the center lacks passion (though nothing to do with the chemistry of Bela Padilla and JC Santos, considering that this is their third pairing in the movies) and, the most fatal, the leading man - the heroine's supposed lifesaver - is startlingly underwritten. There's simply no backstory concerning the guy: other than the fact that he's the lead vocalist of a band who's still struggling to get their big break, we know nothing of him. The film actually tries to convey a more serious tone by touching on the themes of alcoholism and the downside of stardom. As a character study of a young woman on a downward spiral, exacerbated by her chosen profession (showbusiness) that makes her age fast and that regards her as readily disposable as soon as her "market value" diminishes and a younger and fresher starlet comes in, the makers almost hit the right notes. They go for some restraint and have some interesting observations. Compared to "Mia" which likewise features a boozy female protagonist, the depiction of alcoholism in "On Vodka, Beers, and Regrets" is more potent. Bela Padilla as the troubled washed-up actress gives a committed performance in such a way that she makes us feel her anger and sadness. Though I wish that, with such a wounded character, she goes full on as to show the warts and all, so to speak. She's still an "audience-friendly" alcoholic after all. It would have also been better if the characterization of her leading man had been more detailed, so that we can believe that this knight is really bent on pulling his damsel out of the muck.
Wed, 12 Feb 2020 10:22 AM More Reviews