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As someone deeply fascinated by the cinematic medium, there’s nothing like indulging oneself with various movies at home. Thanks to nowadays streaming platforms like Netflix, we can access an incredibly diverse range of films from across the globe. Thanks to their distinctive mixture of drama, humor, and romance, Filipino movies have emerged as a standout for a couple of years now. Through their captivating narratives, well-developed characters, and breathtaking visuals, these films usually provide a window into the rich culture of the Philippines.
Haven’t you seen any Filipino movies on Netflix yet? Then, it’s time for you to check these out!
1. Birdshot (2016)
Director(s): Mikhail Red Writer(s): Mikhail Red, Rae Red Cast: Mary Joy Apostol, Arnold Reyes, John Arcilla, Ku Aquino IMDb Rating: 6.6/10 Runtime: 1h 56m Genre: Thriller
Directed by Mikhail Red, this film tells a thrilling story through powerful imagery. Set in the Philippine countryside, it follows a young girl who accidentally kills an endangered eagle, leading to a chain of events that reveal corruption and injustice in the local community. The film uses stunning landscapes and visuals to capture the characters’ emotions and explore important issues like environmental conservation, human rights, and corruption. Red’s direction is masterful, weaving together various plot threads to create a compelling and thought-provoking film. It is a must-watch for those interested in visual storytelling and socially relevant cinema, leaving a lasting impression on its viewers.
2. Heneral Luna (2015)
Director(s): Jerrold Tarog Writer(s): Henry Francia, E.A. Rocha, Jerrold Tarog Cast: John Arcilla, Mon Confiado, Arron Villaflor, Joem Bascon, Archie Alemania IMDb Rating: 7.3/10 Runtime: 1h 58m Genre: War
A historical epic about General Antonio Luna, a peculiar military leader during the Philippine-American War. The film shows the power of visual communication in storytelling, with impressive cinematography, an intricate plot, and superb acting. The movie effectively conveys complex themes of war, politics, and nationalism through its stunning visuals and intense storytelling. The film’s use of powerful imagery, such as the portrayal of battle scenes and the symbolism of Luna’s red uniform, adds depth and emotional resonance to the story. The exceptional performances by the cast, led by John Arcilla, bring the characters to life and immerse the audience in the story’s rich historical context. Overall, “Heneral Luna” is considered an absolute masterpiece.
3. Goyo: The Boy General (2018)
Director(s): Jerrold Tarog Writer(s): Jerrold Tarog, Rody Vera Cast: Paulo Avelino, Mon Confiado, Carlo Aquino, Epy Quizon, Gwen Zamora IMDb Rating: 6.5/10 Runtime: 2h 35m Genre: War
This is a visually stunning and emotionally powerful historical film that tells the story of General Gregorio del Pilar, a heroic figure in the Philippine Revolution. The movie, a sequel to Heneral Luna, follows del Pilar’s journey as he faces challenges on and off the battlefield and grapples with questions of identity, loyalty, and honor. The masterful use of visual storytelling in the film effectively conveys its powerful themes of courage, sacrifice, and nationalism, with stunning imagery that adds depth and emotional resonance to the story. The exceptional performances by the cast, led by Paulo Avelino as General del Pilar, bring the characters to life, making the audience invested in their struggles and triumphs. Overall, “Goyo: The Boy General” is a visual communication triumph which offers a compelling and moving cinematic experience.
4. BuyBust (2018)
Director(s): Erik Matti Writer(s): Anton Santamaria, Erik Matti Cast: Anne Curtis, Brandon Vera, Victor Neri, Nonie Buencamino, Mara Lopez IMDb Rating: 5.7/10 Runtime: 2h 7m Genre: Action
An intense and action-packed Filipino thriller that tells the story of a group of anti-narcotics agents who go undercover to infiltrate a drug den in the slums of Manila. The film shows the power of visual communication in developing solid narratives, with gripping storytelling, intense action sequences, and impressive cinematography. The stunning visuals and expertly choreographed action scenes effectively convey the film’s intense and harrowing themes of violence and corruption. The exceptional performances by the cast, led by Anne Curtis, showcase the characters’ struggles and vulnerabilities, making the audience invested in their fates. In a nutshell, “BuyBust” is a powerful example of visual communication that offers a thrilling and captivating cinematic experience.
5. Kita Kita (2017)
Director(s): Sigrid Andrea Bernardo Writer(s): Sigrid Andrea Bernardo Cast: Alessandra De Rossi, Empoy Marquez IMDb Rating: 7.5/10 Runtime: 1h 24m Genre: Romantic comedy
A romantic comedy follows Lea, a blind Filipina tour guide in Japan, who meets Tonyo, a fellow Filipino ex-pat. As they spend time together, their relationship blossoms into a heartwarming romance, aided by the film’s stunning visuals, including breathtaking landscapes, vibrant Filipino culture, and creative use of lighting and cinematography. The exceptional performances by the cast, led by Alessandra de Rossi and Empoy Marquez, bring the characters to life, making the audience deeply invested in their relationship. “Kita Kita” is a moving and charming film which also serves as a creative example about developing an effective and entertaining story.
“Four Sisters and a Wedding” is a heartwarming romantic comedy film about four sisters with different approaches to love and relationships. The film follows the story of four sisters who all have different ideas about love and relationships, and how their lives become intertwined when they all fall in love with the same man. The movie is a light-hearted and heartwarming story that explores themes of love, family, and the importance of following your heart. The film also features a memorable soundtrack, beautiful cinematography, and charming performances from the cast. If you’re looking for a feel-good movie that will make you laugh and cry, this is a must!
If you’re in the mood for a heartwarming and unique film that delves into the themes of love and self-discovery, “That Thing Called Tadhana” is a must-watch. This movie centers around Mace a woman attempting to recover from a recent breakup. The cinematography is one of the many things that set this film apart. Equally memorable, the soundtrack is a mix of original songs and covers that accurately reflect the characters’ emotions. Aside from the visuals and music, the film also boasts an incredibly talented cast. “That Thing Called Tadhana” is a must-see for anyone who enjoys romantic comedies with a touch of drama and heart.
8. A Second Chance (2015)
Director(s): Cathy Garcia-Sampana Writer(s): Carmi G. Raymundo, Vanessa R. Valdez, Cathy Garcia-Sampana Cast: John Lloyd Cruz, Bea Alonzo IMDb Rating: 7.0/10 Runtime: 2h 10m Genre: Romantic drama
For those who are looking for a thought-provoking drama that explores the complexities of relationships, this is a must-watch! The movie follows the lives of Popoy and Basha as they navigate the challenges of marriage, family, and fidelity. The film features powerful performances from its lead actors, coupled with beautiful cinematography and a heartfelt soundtrack that enhances the overall viewing experience. Despite being a sequel, “A Second Chance” can be enjoyed as a standalone film and is accessible to audiences of all ages and backgrounds. Overall, this is a touching and emotional film that is guaranteed to leave a lasting impression on viewers. If you’re a fan of dramas that explore the intricacies of relationships, this film should definitely be on your watchlist.
9. On the Job (2013)
Director(s): Erik Matti Writer(s): Michiko Yamamoto, Erik Matti Cast: Gerald Anderson, Joel Torre, Joey Marquez, Piolo Pascual, Angel Aquino, Shaina Magdayao IMDb Rating: 7.0/10 Runtime: 1h 58m Genre: Crime thriller
For cinema enthusiasts searching for an intense and thought-provoking action thriller, “On the Job” is a match! The film follows the story of two inmates temporarily released from prison to work as hitmen for corrupt politicians. The hitmen soon discover the corrupt system goes all the way up to the top of the government and they try to bring it down. The film’s thrilling action sequences and its thought-provoking commentary on corruption and justice make it an unforgettable cinematic experience. Its stunning cinematography captures the streets of Manila’s gritty realism. The tense and atmospheric soundtrack further enhances the overall impact of the film. In conclusion, “On the Job” is an action-packed thriller with a powerful social message and is sure to leave a lasting impression on its viewers.
“Eerie” is a haunting horror movie that explores the depths of fear, faith, and the supernatural. The movie is set in the prestigious all-girls Catholic school, St. Lucia, where strange and terrifying occurrences have been taking place. What makes this such a good film is its expertly crafted atmosphere of suspense and terror. The film’s intelligent and thought-provoking script offers a powerful commentary on the intersection of religion, power, and the supernatural in Filipino culture. Whether you’re a horror movie aficionado or simply looking for a film that will keep you on the edge of your seat, this is a movie that will leave you feeling both scared and intellectually stimulated!
11. Fan Girl (2020)
Director(s): Antoinette Jadaone Writer(s): Antoinette Jadaone Cast: Paulo Avelino, Charlie Dizon, Bea Alonzo IMDb Rating: 6.6/10 Runtime: 1h 40m Genre: Drama
This indie film, directed by Antoinette Jadaone, tells the story of a teenage girl named Jane who is obsessed with a famous actor named Paulo Avelino. When she gets the opportunity to meet him in person, her dream turns into a nightmare as she discovers the harsh realities of the entertainment industry. “Fan Girl” is a powerful and emotional film that tackles complex themes such as identity, power dynamics, and consent. This film is highly recommended for anyone interested in exploring the darker side of celebrity culture and the impact of fandom on both fans and idols.
12. Ordinary People (2016)
Director(s): Eduardo W. Roy Jr. Writer(s): Eduardo W. Roy Jr. Cast: Ronwaldo Martin, Hasmin Killip, John Kenji Montoro IMDb Rating: 7.4/10 Runtime: 1h 47m Genre: Drama
The film follows a family struggling with the aftermath of a tragic accident, and the stunning cinematography effectively conveys the emotions and themes of the story. The use of light and shadow, creative camera angles, and framing add depth and texture to the visual narrative. The film’s cherry-picked cast delivers nuanced and powerful performances that bring the characters to life. Furtherly, the haunting score enhances the emotional impact of the story. In a nutshell, “Ordinary People” is a visually stunning and compelling film that explores complex themes of grief, loss, and family ties through its imagery and storytelling. It’s a great selection for anyone interested in the power of visual communication in cinema.
13. Lola Igna (2019)
Director(s): Eduardo W. Roy Jr. Writer(s): Eduardo W. Roy Jr. Cast: Angie Ferro, Yves Flores IMDb Rating: 7.3/10 Runtime: 1h 54m Genre: Comedy
This motion picture tells the story of an elderly woman named Lola Igna, a foul-mouthed and cantankerous woman who holds the title of the oldest living grandmother in the world. When a local government official visits her remote village to award her with a plaque of recognition, she sees an opportunity to escape her monotonous life. This is a visually stunning film that captures the beauty and simplicity of rural life in the Philippines. The movie’s cinematography is both understated and effective, allowing the audience to immerse themselves in the characters’ lives. With its mix of humour and heart, “Lola Igna” is a film that will leave viewers feeling uplifted and entertained. This heartwarming film showcases the power of storytelling to bring people together and is a testament to the beauty and resilience of the human spirit.
Filipino movies offer a unique and authentic perspective on life in the Philippines, providing a window into the country’s rich history, culture, and values. The success of Filipino movies on Netflix can also be attributed to the high quality of these films, which feature talented actors, expertly crafted scripts, and stunning cinematography. As a result, viewers from around the world are drawn to the powerful and emotionally charged stories that these films have to offer, making Filipino cinema an increasingly important part of the global film industry.
Whether you’re a fan of romantic comedies, action-packed thrillers, or thought-provoking dramas, there’s something for everyone in the rich tapestry of Filipino cinema. So why not grab some snacks, settle into your favorite spot on the couch, and immerse yourself in the world of Filipino movies on Netflix? You never know what you might discover!