Mrs. is a simple yet effective introspective tale about the emotional traps people unwittingly fall in, thanks to great performances and a well executed script.
70 year old Virginia lives in an ancestral house sitting on top of a fault line. Despite the obvious danger the empty nester stubbornly stays at home, haunted by a past that has yet to have a closure while dealing with a present that reminds of the little time she has left.
It’s common to hear people stay in their homes despite warnings about natural disasters. However, no one has bothered to find out why these people, including the elderly, choose to stay despite the obvious dangers. Mrs. offers us one perspective on why these people choose to stay behind.
The movie starts out as a simple story about an empty nester, until it gradually unfolds to become an introspective tale about ties that only bond but also trap us. Here we see Virginia and other characters trying to live their lives as best as they can, but trapped in their own way. Loss, misplaced devotion, and tragedy leaves characters stranded, fixated or haunted.
The story sounds mundane but remains engaging thanks to a stellar cast. The millennials may not recognize the iconic Elizabeth Oropesa, but her talents will show it. She’s supported by other veteran actresses Lotlot de Leon, Anita Linda, Daria Ramirez, and Sharmaine Arnaiz. Angeli Bayani makes an appearance too, who won a best actress award for her performance in Ned’s Project, which was featured in this year’s CineFilipino line-up.
The cinematography captures the small yet important moments of its characters as well as paint a picture of their lives with the help of production design. The story doesn’t rely on easy exposition or flashbacks. Little by little, the story becomes more clear, encouraging viewers to pay attention and observe a woman tied to her past. How many times has she entered her son’s room and looked at his picture all these years? The house itself could stand for Virginia – an old soul who is one earthquake away from destruction but remains stuck in a place where memories have rooted it to the ground.
All of these elements gives us a slice of life that isn’t often tackled and addressed. Obviously, Mrs. is a film for the cinephile, who wouldn’t mind watching a character-driven story with scenes that linger too long and doesn’t offer any reprieve.
As a matter of fact, it ends abruptly with no easy answers and resolutions. As Virginia’s loyal maid pushes through with her plan out of desperation with horrifying results, she’s pushed to the edge and the audiences are left with a haunting image.
Still, it’s a terrific ending to a movie that lets its story speak for itself. And in its own simple way, manages to speak volumes.
My Rating: 8.5/10