ONCE in a while, you come across a film that allows you to absolve yourself for playing hooky one afternoon and spending three precious hours away from the office. Last Thursday, Aug. 8, 2019, it was “Mina-Anud.”
Inspired by true events that occurred in 2009 when tons of cocaine bricks allegedly worth a billion pesos mysteriously arrive in the shores of a sleepy fishing village in Eastern Samar, this film brings to life the reality that the lure of money almost always proves irresistible to many.
The story is simple. And yet it is complex. It’s about drugs. But it’s also about desire, desperation, duty. It’s about bad decisions made in a bind. It’s about lust. It’s about love. It’s about life.
The residents are initially unaware of what these bricks are. Noticing the dead fish in the water, they conclude the bricks are poison. They haul off the bricks to dry land. Before long, PDEA (Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency) agents arrive on the island and the residents are soon apprised about what they actually have in their hands. From there on, everything changes in this island.
Director Kerwin Go, who co-wrote the script with Stephen Lopez, says he is not out to make a political statement with this film because the story was, in fact, conceived eight years before the “war on drugs.”
Kerwin says he made the film primarily for entertainment purposes. And he chose this subject for his directorial debut because he is “uniquely qualified” to tell this story, having personally witnessed the events of 2009 and having been personally acquainted with some of the people who became ensnared in the drug trade.
This is a story with a serious subject. And yet, when you sit through this movie, you will break into laughter many times. It is as hilarious as it is heartbreaking. You will walk out of the movie theater with a chuckle. But on the drive home, you will pause and ponder.
The events of 2009 have since been replicated many times through various parts of the country—the latest incident being that at Quezon Province a month ago when seven suspected cocaine bricks with an estimated value of P35 million turned up along the shores of Mauban. Can this film be any more relevant?
Kerwin Go is a master storyteller. He delivers a dark comedy about crime and corruption, desire and desperation, death and destruction with such wit and irony, you laugh so hard while watching the movie yet think so deeply afterwards.
The film stars Dennis Trillo, Jerald Napoles and Matteo Guidicelli. “Mina-Anud” opens Aug. 21 in theaters nationwide.
A serious story delightfully told with jabs of humor at just the right moments.
It’s riotous. It’s raw. It’s real. If only for these three qualities, this is the movie to watch if you can only watch one more movie this year.