There are just those times when you walk into a cinema, expecting to have a really good experience, and then you walk out feeling meh.
That’s exactly how I felt after watching Wenn V. Deramas’ latest comedy Flick, “Moron 5.2 The Transformation.”
I was the only one at UrbanTribe.ph who’s excited to catch this flick, which is why I ended up doing this review. That’s because comedy films like this are my kind of movies. I like cheap laughs that stem from foolish situations and snappy and, sometimes, illogical dialogues. Since I enjoyed the first Moron 5 film, it only makes sense that I watch this one.
Moron 5.2 depicts the lives of Albert, Isaac, Mozart, Michaelangelo, and Aristotle–five friends who are, to the rest of the world, stupid–after their high school graduation. These five have moved on from being high school repeaters to family men. They’ve also found jobs and made quite good money since they live in really nice homes.
It turns out that their brood–each named after Philippine presidents–are very smart, which was their source of pride. However, their moronic antics have made their kids susceptible to bullying in school. As a result, the kids resented their fathers’ stupidity. This leads the kids to do something that would deeply hurt their fathers.
Feeling dejected, the five spend the night in an open field, which looked very similar to a soon-to-be village site. Here, they’ll see something fall out of the sky. And because of their childish curiosity and stupid ways, they’ll come across a strange object, get electrocuted, and come to believe that they’ve received super powers.
Their newfound abilities give them the opportunity to make their kids proud, so they take on a new role: the city’s heroes, the M5.
They tackle hostage taking and even a terrorist attempt. But their biggest battle is with their original nemesis: Becky Pamintuan, the scorned transgender who they sent to a mental institution several years ago.
How will she get out of the institution? You’ll just have to see the movie.
Cheap laughs and not-so-funny moments
It’s undeniable that Deramas is one of the best directors when it comes to comedy flicks. His blockbuster track record shows that. But I felt that this sequel didn’t quite have the same impact as his other movies. The Tanging Ina series was a real laugh trip experience. Girl Boy Bakla Tomboy is also funny.
This one, however, is kinda lackluster. The first Moron 5 is way better. The sequel is just a few knots higher than The Unkabogable Praybeyt Benjamin.
What I appreciate a lot about the movie is the conscious effort to make everything plausible. Little things were shown to support several moments in the film. And it’s so easy to miss these things, which we’ve seen so many times in other movies. It was nice to not have moments where you’d go “how the hell did that happen?” or “that’s preposterous!”
The establishing shot in the scene right after they supposedly got their powers was a perfect example. It helped explain how and why these moronic group thought they actually had powers.
What I found mostly funny in the movie had nothing to do with plot highlights. It was more of the funny lines. Having a group of self-aware idiots who like to ponder on their situation is golden. They’ll say all the right and wrong things. They’ll curse and bash each other. They’ll stretch their minds to the point where they almost make sense and then they won’t.
The times when I laughed were during these moments. When they’d call each other stupid and attempt to find the explanations to their problems. Cheap laughs? Yeah. But it’s okay. They were good.
Deramas is a good scriptwriter and it showed in the dialogues. Each character’s lines sounded natural. It’s exactly what you would expect from someone who’s on the same wavelength. The absurd exchanges between the pals actually made sense.
I like how they’d get so into their conversations that they end up fighting each other just like when they were figuring out whether amnesia is caused by a virus or bacteria and when they fighting over their kids’ dismissal time.
These were, I felt, the movie’s highlights. It’s all in the dialogue.
There’s just one thing I found disturbing. The kids are well aware of their dads’ reputation as not being the sharpest tools in the shed and it made me cringe each time they verbalize their fathers’ stupidity and “kabobohan.”
I thought the writers could’ve found less harsh lines for the kids. I feel bad that these children had to say lines as blatant as these. But then again, it’s part of the movie.
My disappointment stems from the fact that the scenes that were designed to be funny didn’t turn out that way–terrorist scene, hostage-taking scene, fake rape scene, and the final confrontation with Becky.
The unexpected star
As funny as the main characters were, I felt that John Lapus, as Becky, was the bigger star. His lines were well-written, funny, and delivered exceptionally. His experience as a theater actor was evident in his characterization. He knows when to stick to one and when to drop it. He has a knack from delivering exceptional lines.
Boom and Manuel, his sidekicks, were too annoying though. I know they’re supposed to be mentally challenged, but their acting was very irritating.
Under utilized actors
The lovely ladies who played as the M5’s wives were under utilized. They were purely trophy wives. It’d be okay had they not cast Nikki Valdez and Mylene Dizon, two very good actresses, who weren’t given what they rightfully deserved.
At least Nikki had a funny scene towards the end. Mylene was a wasted opportunity. She should’ve been given more airtime.
However, Joy Viado, who reprises her role as Aristotle’s aunt, was nuts. Here, she plays the love interest of Michaelangelo (Matteo Guidicelli). Her character arc in itself was funny. Her lines were short but hilarious as well. Out of all the wives, she had the most exposure.
“Moron 5.2 The Transformation” won’t make you laugh so hard you’ll pee in your pants. You’ll snicker and laugh occasionally only because of the lines. Several scenes didn’t elicit the same reaction, at least from me. And I felt that some were forced, especially the denouement.
Should you watch it? Up to you. It doesn’t suck but it’s not as good as its predecessor.
Director: Wenn V. Deramas
Cast: Luis Manzano, Billy Crawford, Marvin Agustin, Matteo Guidicelli, DJ Durano, John Lapus