‘Sakaling Hindi Makarating’ Movie Review: A journey to discover

“A love letter to the Philippines.” - Ice Idanan

Following the movie “That Thing Called Tadhana,” another wanderlust-after-heartbreak kind of movie opened in selected cinema. But this time highlighting the country’s unspoiled tourist spots: Zamboanga, Siquijor, Marinduque, Pagudpod and Batanes. Thanks to M for successfully transporting the audience to postcard worthy sceneries of the Philippines that surely excite each one's wanderlust soul.

‘Sakaling Hindi Makarating’ Movie Review
Photo courtesy of 'Sakaling Hindi Makarating' (SHM) Facebook page
The movie emerged as a cranky 27-year-old, Cielo (Alessandra de Rossi), answered a call from her mother (Irma Adlawan), telling that she doesn’t have to be alone and that she could’ve stayed longer in their house. Cielo who is grieving the end of 11-year relationship in her new apartment recluse herself from the world. Not to mention that her fiance called it off two months away the wedding. Through a twitching flashback montages of her bacon-filled love-story with Mark (Jay Gonzaga), we were able to see where broken Cielo came from. Who wouldn't feel anything less than what Cielo felt? How would you recover from that almost half-of-your-life kind of relationship?

During her solitude, she started receiving series of different hand-illustrated postcards with love letters addressed to her apartment given by a certain M. Is M her ex-lover slash ex-fiance? If not her fiance, then who was it? Those artwork piques Cielo’s interest, she even painted her wall with the Philippine map. The appearance of her neighbor Paul (Pepe Herrera), being friendly and compassionate, helped her decide to embark on a journey in attempt to find M.

Pepe Herrera Sakaling Hindi Makarating
Screengrab from SHM Youtube video.
As Cielo went on her unconventional trip, we begin to recognize that her trip is not just finding M but more of finding herself again. Not just picking up the broken pieces of her but more of self discovery. With no definite itineraries, she considered staying in a province from which the image in the postcard originate for two weeks.

4 Things We Can Learn in "Sakaling Hindi Makarating"

Some of the factors I liked are the locations in the movie, Cielo’s interactions with people she get along with and how she pushed herself to discover a better version of happiness. From Zamboanga’s Vinta Regatta and swimming lessons from a local girl in exchange with her iPhone to almost finding herself lost in the province of Marinduque. I admire her genuinely free-spirit to open herself to new skills in unfamiliar environment.

‘Sakaling Hindi Makarating’
Photo courtesy of 'Sakaling Hindi Makarating' (SHM) Facebook page
In search for a place to stay in Mogpog, Marinduque, Cielo chanced upon a boutique in which the owner (Karen delos Reyes) refused her at first. Until Manuel (JC Santos, played as brother of Karen) saw her and regarded her as a friend. The two met in a ship bound to Marinduque. At the port, Cielo was offered by Manuel a ride to her destination which she crankily rejected. It was soon that they became close to each other. Cielo even thinks that Manuel is M who sends postcards to her. I even felt the same way, when you almost see the romance between them.

JC Santos Sakaling Hindi Makarating
Screengrab from SHM Youtube video.
Performances of the artists are well aligned, commending how de Rossi proved that she's still has it. She’s able to truthfully portray the mood of a woman who’s in a deep agony while trying to slip away through her escapades. Herrera, the supportive friend, and Santos (as Manuel), the needy-boyfriend-like, are very charming and endearing to their distinct roles. The delivery of their lines are so good to make an impression to the audience. The supporting characters have their fare share of authenticity.

The dialogues weren’t too conventional and the exchanges were done in a way that felt so real. I personally thought that Manuel is actually M, he abruptly showed his interest to Cielo. Too shallow though, at least I have Cielo’s instinct in that part.

I liked how the writer revealed the mysterious M. It’s funny how one forgets to include her address in anticipation of a response. The twist of event of finding a potential love interest to unlocking the secrets of a new found friends. Nonetheless, things happen for a reason and that reason is to set everyone free from sorrow.

Alessandra Sakaling Hindi Makarating
Screengrab from SHM Youtube video.
WATCH: ‘Sakaling Hindi Makarating’ official trailer

Sakaling Hindi Makarating,’ which opened in cinemas nationwide on February 1, is an independent film inspired by true-to-life story of its very own Ice Idanan, director and writer. “This film is more for me and for people who went through something like this. I bet a lot of people have gone through a period wherein they needed to learn things on their own. Breakup or no breakup, ‘Sakaling Hindi Makarating’ is for people who need to find themselves,” she declared.

--M, The Summit Express

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