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Posted by : Pinoy Screen and Stage Thursday, May 10, 2018


SCORE: 4/5

dir. Alec Figuracion

Milliseconds turn into seconds, seconds into minutes, minutes into hours, hours into days, days into months, months into years, and so on, until everything becomes eternity. We experience the cycle of life which bores us so it's as if we just closed our eyes and opened them again to find that decades have gone. Or we experience that special hug, maybe suddenly before visiting someone's house for the first time, or from a stranger we met at the airport, for just a few seconds that somehow finds its home in our soul and just stays there, for lifetimes and beyond, regardless whether that single moment in infinite realities was the only moment we could be with that person.

In The Eternity Between Seconds, Andres Marasigan (TJ Trinidad) is a married and renowned self-help book author of Take the Leap. He's in Korea for a few days to give a short talk about his book and sign some copies. Sam (Yeng Constantino), on the other hand), is there to meet her father who abandoned her since she was just a baby, for the first time. She will be staying there for three months. Their paths cross on a train ride with both having that insidious problem of killing time, being uncertain because what is certain can sometimes cause discomfiture. Andres has lost his watch and Sam offers to help find it.

The film give us a very meaningful conversation between two people. They take us as the two go from being strangers to having that meaningful connection, one that doesn't need to be labeled, but one that which we know that only the two of them can understand. It makes us question the need for society to have all these labels. The shots which linger, alternate between medium and wide shots, and pan a bit, give us a feel that both protagonists are bored and lost without realizing they are, on a conscious level.






Andres doesn't live by what he writes in his book while Sam, even though she seems to be a free spirit, is chained by her fear of the unknown when it comes to renewing family ties. Another dichotomy of ideologies that was brought up in the film was the midlife crisis versus the millenial confusion, or what we can perceive as a generational gap when it comes to views about something as simple as travelling. Andres views travelling as a luxury and not as a necessity, and even wonders how someone as young as Sam (presumably in her mid to late twenties) can actually afford to do so. Sam, on the other hand, thinks that the experience one gains from travelling is important, and travelling isn't just about running from problems temporarily just like Andres views it.

A memorable part of the film is when Andres tells Sam that in that fleeting moment of their encounter in the airport, which is temporary, that he is not what Andres is to the world. He is just an individual like her. It leaves us wondering that if we leave all our baggage, our ego, what reputation the world has bestowed upon us, and just meet each other, as two people, will everything ever be the same?




Quotes:


"Parang lumulutang lang ako sa pagitan ng isang desisyon, isang resolusyon, sa gitna ng pinanggalingan ko at pupuntahan ko." - Andres Marasigan

"Parang ang pessimistic and ang angsty mo naman para sa isang self-help author." - Sam

"Why can't we just accept that travelling doesn't magically fix any problems?" - Andres Marasigan

Musings:

1. The few frames showing the little boy towards the beginning before Andres even met Sam is a nice foreshadowing of his revelation towards the end.

2. How come they went to a spa when the flight is only 2.5 hours later?

3. Producer Melai Entuna who is behind Sakaling Hindi Makarating from the 2nd CineFilipino (2016) stirs up our emotions again.




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