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Noel Vera
Works at Businessworld
Attended Ateneo de Manila
Lives in Somewhere
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Noel Vera

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Ang Mahiwagang Daigdig ni Pedro Penduko (The Magical World of Pedro Penduko, Celso Ad. Castillo, 1973)
Some notes on Celso Ad. Castillo's Ang Mahiwagang Daig dig ni Pedro Penduko ( The Ma gical World of Pedro Penduko , 1973 ) Watching Cel so Ad. Castillo's fantasy epic you can't help but think the whole thing was basically thrown together, the film morphing ...
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Some notes on Celso Ad. Castillo's Ang Mahiwagang Daigdig ni Pedro Penduko (The Magical World of Pedro Penduko, 1973) Watching Celso Ad. Castillo's fantasy epic you can't help but think the whole thing was basically thrown together, the film morphing like a doped-up lycanthrope from musical to ...
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Noel Vera

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The Tale of Princess Kaguya (Kaguya-hime no Monogatari, Isao Takahata, 2013)
Little girl lost Call him Hayao Miyazaki's dark elder. Where Miyazaki has earned a small but enduring popularity -- not to mention a gold-plated doorstop --in the West, long time collaborator Isao Takahata was content to toil in relative obscurity (if anyth...
Little girl lost. Call him Hayao Miyazaki's dark elder. Where Miyazaki has earned a small but enduring popularity--not to mention a gold-plated doorstop--in the West, longtime collaborator Isao Takahata was content to toil in relative obscurity (if anything Takahata has earned the respect of a ...
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The Theory of Everything (James Marsh, 2014)
T i me enough for love Biopics are funny creatures -- strange because they're familiar, and bei ng fam iliar are often subject to feelings of disaffection, even contempt.  You might say the bar for the genre was set absurdly high alm ost from the start : in...
Time enough for love. Biopics are funny creatures--strange because they're familiar, and being familiar are often subject to feelings of disaffection, even contempt. You might say the bar for the genre was set absurdly high almost from the start: in his 1927 epic Napoleon, Abel Gance inserted ...
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The Winner of the Academy Award for Outstanding Picture
The wild blue In time for Oscar Weekend , my own little piece about the Academy Award winner for Outstanding Picture-- William Wellman's 1927 epic Wings won in 1929, the Academy of Mot ion Picture Arts and Science's very first awarding ceremony, and you c a...
The wild blue. In time for Oscar Weekend, my own little piece about the Academy Award winner for Outstanding Picture-- William Wellman's 1927 epic Wings won in 1929, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science's very first awarding ceremony, and you can see the thinking behind the choice: ...
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Birdman (Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, 2014)
Stagestruck ( Warning: Inarritu's latest discussed in detail, with plot twists and surprises mentioned and perhaps picked apart. In other words, if you haven't seen the film--watch it first! )  In an interview I did of the late filmmaker Mario O'Hara I aske...
Stagestruck (Warning: Inarritu's latest discussed in detail, with plot twists and surprises mentioned and perhaps picked apart. In other words, if you haven't seen the film--watch it first!) In an interview I did of the late filmmaker Mario O'Hara I asked what foreign films he's seen, ...
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Noel Vera

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Hard to Be a God (Trudno byt' bogom, Aleksei German, 2013)
I, Mud Aleksei German's adaptation of the Strugatsky Brothers' 1964 novel is to put it mildly a labor of love: six years actual shooting (from 2000 to 2006), another six of post-production, with German himself dying in 2013 (the film was completed under the...
I, Mud Aleksei German's adaptation of the Strugatsky Brothers' 1964 novel is to put it mildly a labor of love: six years actual shooting (from 2000 to 2006), another six of post-production, with German himself dying in 2013 (the film was completed under the supervision of his wife and son); ...
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The Wind Rises (Hayao Miyazaki, 2013)
Skyward bound   (Warning--article discusses Miyazaki's film (and his manga Nausicaa of the Valley of th e Wind ) in some detail, including p lot twists and surprises.  In short --see the film (an d maybe read the manga) first!) Can't help but feel a sharp p...
Skyward bound (Warning--article discusses Miyazaki's film (and his manga Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind) in some detail, including plot twists and surprises. In short--see the film (and maybe read the manga) first!) Can't help but feel a sharp pang watching The Wind Rises (2013), ...
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Have him in circles
53 people
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Selma (Ava DuVernay); American Sniper (Clint Eastwood)
It's just a fantasy M anaged to catch two biopics, both problema tic . Turned them over in my head-- which one's historically accurate, whi ch mostly invented ? Which succeeds a nd which fails , as cinema and as genre piece? Which is the better work ? Spike...
It's just a fantasy. Managed to catch two biopics, both problematic. Turned them over in my head--which one's historically accurate, which mostly invented? Which succeeds and which fails, as cinema and as genre piece? Which is the better work? Spike Lee spent years and a major Hollywood budget ...
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Noel Vera

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Groundhog Day (Harold Ramis,1993)
Rinse; repeat   ( Warning : film's plot and twists and ending all discussed in close detail! ) Funny how Harold Ramis' Groundhog Day (1993) opened to respecta ble but not spectacular reviews --Roger E bert sensed that it was " basically a comedy, but there'...
Rinse; repeat (Warning: film's plot and twists and ending all discussed in close detail!) Funny how Harold Ramis' Groundhog Day (1993) opened to respectable but not spectacular reviews--Roger Ebert sensed that it was "basically a comedy, but there's an underlying dynamic that is a little more ...
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Noel Vera

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The Heartbreak Kid (Elaine May, 1972)
Shoot the moon ( Warning: plot , surprise twists, and finale discussed in detail ) Elain e May's The Heartbreak Kid (1972) , about Jewish up-and-comer Lenny Cantrow (Charles Grodin) and his schemes to put aside newly wed wife Lila Kolod ny ( Jea nnie Berlin...
(Warning: plot, surprise twists, and finale discussed in detail) Elaine May's The Heartbreak Kid (1972), about Jewish up-and-comer Lenny Cantrow (Charles Grodin) and his schemes to put aside newlywed wife Lila Kolodny (Jeannie Berlin, the director's daughter) in favor of WASP coed Kelly Corcoran ...
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Blackhat (Michael Mann, 2015)
The Professionals With an opening worldwide weekend gross of $6 million and at best mediocre reviews from critics , Michael Mann's $70 million Blackhat -despite the presence of Thor star Chris Hemsworth- is poised to become the director's biggest commerci...
The Professionals With an opening worldwide weekend gross of $6 million and at best mediocre reviews from critics, Michael Mann's $70 million Blackhat--despite the presence of Thor star Chris Hemsworth--is poised to become the director's biggest commercial and critical disaster to date.
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Noel Vera

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Best Films of 2014: Four Lists
B est films of 2014: four lists First : The Babadook , Birdman , Boyhood , Gone Girl , The Grand Budapest Hotel , Interstellar , Nightcrawler , Under the Skin -- the usual suspects -- are not all bad films (when talking 'b ad' two titles in particular come ...
Best films of 2014: four lists. First: The Babadook, Birdman, Boyhood, Gone Girl, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Interstellar, Nightcrawler, Under the Skin--the usual suspects--are not all bad films (when talking 'bad' two titles in particular come to mind), but for one reason or another the flaws ...
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People
Have him in circles
53 people
Marianita Torres-Licameli's profile photo
John Mark Calderon's profile photo
Paciano Osias's profile photo
Mj Denila's profile photo
J Staley's profile photo
Charles Martinez-Pita's profile photo
Lucresia Strange's profile photo
sona gautam's profile photo
Dennis Yu's profile photo
Education
  • Ateneo de Manila
    1988
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Introduction
From my introduction to Critic After Dark: A Review of Philippine Cinema:
 
Philippine cinema has its share of gold and manure, artists and poseurs; because the average Filipino film costs a little over US$250,000 (in 2004 currency) and is usually shot on a stretch of about twenty shooting days (or less), the manure is often more odious than what passes for commercial filmmaking in Hollywood nowadays; on the other hand, because budget and schedule are often so small and tight, the rare gold nugget found seems all the more impressive, bordering perhaps on the miraculous. Thanks to those nuggets, I still believe in miracles.

Blog: Critic After Dark
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    Film writing, present
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Noel Vera's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
10 great American sci-fi films of the 1950s
www.bfi.org.uk

In the 1950s, cold war paranoia and the fear of imminent destruction gave rise to an unparalleled wave of alien invasion movies and apocalyp