Bestselling romance novelist Nicholas Sparks once wrote that, “There’s no love like the first.”
There’s truth to it, but not something people should bank on and misconstrue ‘first’ love will never ever die and that it is also the ‘one great love’. People change so as the intensity and the degree of love can change as well.
For the past years, all those ‘hugot’ films have succeeded in appealing to the ‘hopeless romantic’ moviegoers, but with Regal Entertainment Incorporated’s official film entry to the Metro Manila Film Festival 2018—titled One Great Love is perhaps a typical love triangle story to many.
The Gina Marissa Tagasa-screenplay attempted to guide its viewers on how to spot one great love.
Is Serendipity a sign of One Great Love?
Who could not forget the 2001 romantic film Serendipity where it featured John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale as Jonathan and Sara, who met in their 20s. He fell in love with her at the first sight, but was prevented because of her belief in destiny. 10 years later, they met again and thought the encounter was magical and serendipitous; that both believed they were destined for each other. Then it had a happy ending for the two leads.
Following the journey of both Kim Chiu and JC de Vera’s characters Zyra Paez and Carl Mauricio; as they accidentally met and eventually fell in love with each other, but due to unavoidable circumstances—they were forced to end up on separate ways.
While Zyra is already slowly picking up the pieces from her sad past (her failed relationship with Carl) and enjoying the company of a male best friend—Dr. Ian Arcaño portrayed by Dennis Trillo and to whom she fondly referred him as her ‘Bes’ (short for best friend). But little did she know her best friend is already falling for her.
Typically Untypical Love Story.
At first glance, those suckers for love stories—they may find One Great Love is just another spin-off from a typical love triangle concept. The good news is—it’s NOT.
Since almost all of the films do bank on love; it’s just interpreted in varying ways—this film directed by Enrico Quizon has something the mature audience would appeal to and must watch first in order to understand fully what love is all about; especially about searching for the one great love and not the one who got away.
In the 80s movies having such themes—do have third parties in the losing end. They are most of the time pitted as having a disadvantage stand. Though, Trillo’s character may be viewed as the third wheel—still he provided something that viewers would be rooting for in the process.
The public has been treated to all sorts of romantic-comedy flicks, but having Chiu tackle a more mature kind of role is a great challenge. The kissing, sexy and bed scene she has to go through is enough proof that the former Pinoy Big Brother teen winner is ready for a serious route of acting.
Both equally gorgeous male artists—Trillo and de Vera had to tackle their respective characters in a non-mellifluous manner. Carl, a pilot by profession is the flighty type, but still perceived by Zyra as her great love and Ian is a cardiologist who failed to mend his heart when the woman he has fallen for; has set her eyes and heart on Carl.
There were scenes highlighting the intensity of Dennis’s acting, but JC may have lagged behind in terms of expressing his disgust for fighting for the love of his life. Not too sure if it was the director’s call; then it has somehow failed to showcase the grandeur of both actors’ potentials.
What is laudable about the film is that—it succeeded in transforming the former images of the three lead stars. Kim is capable of stripping off herself in the most vulnerable state as she wept over the one great love she has and the one that got away.
Both Trillo and de Vera are brilliant actors. The former has won two best supporting actor awards for films—Aishite Imasu 1941: Mahal Kita (2006) and Mano Po 6: A Mother’s Love (2010); while the latter has his lone best actor Best Partee Ever (2016). Perhaps, this film has not exposed fully their moments in order to shine through.
Transitions in storytelling were either abrupt or a drag. Perhaps, it’s the fault of the editing, that I am not sure. Cinematography is breathtaking especially the one showing the top view of Manila Bay and other scenic shots with all the yachts in the frame.
One Great Love is a dramatic love and family story. It speaks about fighting for the love that is right and to let go of love that only brings fleeting delight. It is now playing in cinemas this Christmas Day, December 25.