Cavite is about as indie as you can get, said Stephen Holden in The New York Times. Shot with a hand-held camera on the streets of the titular Philippine city, this is 'œa textbook example of seat-of-the-pants guerrilla filmmaking.' Adam is a 32-year-old Filipino-American with a dead-end security job who travels back to his homeland for his father's funeral. When he arrives at the airport, he answers a ringing cell phone that someone has slipped into his bag. A sinister-sounding voice tells Adam that his mother and sister have been kidnapped, and then sends him off on a nauseating scavenger hunt through the poorest parts of Cavite. These street scenes are where the film truly succeeds, said Kevin Crust in the Los Angeles Times. As Adam stumbles through crowds of peasants, 'œthe hot, humid environment practically sweats through the screen.' To torture Adam for his American softness, the voice teases him about his pidgin Tagalog (the regional dialect), and at one point forces him to eat a local delicacy, a duck egg with a half-developed embryo. As Adam, Ian Gamazon can't act his way out of a paper bag, said Nicolas Rapold in The New York Sun. 'œBut his lack of experience only makes him more effective' as an everyman in an alien environment. Walking in his shoes through the movie will leave you weak-kneed at its end.
Rating: Not Rated