Sunday, January 19, 2014

On the Job

Way back in October, I saw On the Job.  It played for a week or two at the Metreon but I couldn't make time to see it there.  It played for a week at the Century at Tanforan which is where I saw it.

On the Job starring Piolo Pascual, Gerald Anderson & Joel Torre; directed by Erik Matti; Tagalog & English with subtitles; (2013) - Official Facebook

On the Job is a tremendous film which deserved more recognition than it received.  The film follows two prisoners - Tatang (Joel Torre) & Daniel (Gerald Anderson).  They are assassins who are released from prison for short periods to carry out their assignments.  Tatang is the older, experienced one while Daniel is the younger, more volatile member of the team.  Certain members of the prison staff are aware of their activities which facilitates the prisoners coming and going.  Both Tatang & Daniel have lied to their families.  They have said they are working abroad and can only come home periodically due to the travel expense.

Investigating the assassinations are Sgt. Acosta (Joey Marquez), a honest cop whose career has stalled out due to his unwillingness to let things slide and up and comer federal agent Francis Coronel (Piolo Pascual) whose quick rise is in no small part due to his father-in-law, a powerful politician.

The two pairs have separate storylines and do not share the screen until a fateful convergence in a hospital.  The characters development is impressive for an action film but its the tense action scenes and gritty realism which elevates On the Job.  In particular, the scenes in the prison and the relationship between Tatang & Daniel are exceptional.

Also in the back of mind as I was watching this is that On the Job was based on a true story which makes the film even more compelling.

Joel Torre in On the Job

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