Eight years after the iconic love story of Popoy and Basha in One More Chance, which in the coming years became the ultimate hugot movie, the couple returns to the big screen to continue their epic romance, now more mature, more intense and if fans thought that the first movie was superb, they haven’t seen anything yet.
After weathering heartbreak and and a reunion, Popoy (John Lloyd Cruz) and Basha (Bea Alonzo) are ready to tie the knot and start their forever with each other. Their families and friends bear witness to the culmination of their love. After all, they have been through the worst and with a love like theirs, their journey is bound to be all roses. Fast forward to seven years after the wedding, and it seems that marriage isn’t all that its hyped up to be, and the couple begin to question how things turned out the way it had. Could they be headed for another breakup or is their love strong enough to withstand the worst?
Let me just get this out of the way right now. I thought the film was brilliant. If I could sum up A Second Chance in one word, this would be the word that I would use.
From the opening scene to the final scene, every sequence was relevant. Everything felt familiar. Everyone felt like a part of the audiences’ lives. Popoy and Basha seemed like well loved members of the one’s family. And this is why the wedding scene was one of my favorites in the movie. Everyone was just so happy, the feelings felt genuine, perhaps borne from the fact that the cast’s camaraderie and rapport was so well established from the first movie. Before I knew it, tears were already streaming down my face in the first ten minutes of the film and it was a great feeling. It was a moving scene that celebrated the triumph of Popoy and Basha’s love story. Even when Basha was ugly crying, everything just felt right, and wonderful.
But as with fairy tales, the happy ending is not a given. This time, the dragons came in the form of tragedies, failures, a lack of confidence and trust in one’s partner, and countless trials that most married couples go through. Each experience is chronicled and presented in such a way that is relatable to the audience whether they are single, married, looking for someone or have given up on finding true love. When Basha expresses her frustration at Popoy when he refuses to tell her what is wrong, the audience feels it. When Popoy towards the end tells her why, their hearts break.
Because Popoy and Basha are like long lost friends, everybody is rooting for them to work out their differences but even so, it still felt touch and go.
Another clever thing that the film managed to do through its teaser was mislead the audience as to what caused Popoy and Basha’s marital troubles so when it finally unfolded, it felt like an AHA moment.
The dialogue (Vanessa Valdez, Carmi Rayundo) is superb, the scoring excellent, and the direction is marvelous. If there were quotable quotes in the last movie, multiply that tenfold. Each word hits its intended mark and leaves one’s heart wrung out like a wet dishrag at the end of the movie. Everyone goes through the journey with Popoy and Basha and watch as they crash and burn and try to rebuild on what has been lost.
And leave us not forget how perfectly John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo reprised their roles in this movie. If they were great actors before, they have grown leaps and bounds in the years that followed and this movie benefitted from their acting brilliance. I’ve always said this but both actors are great individually but together, they fall together like pieces of a puzzle. They jive, they synch, they bring out the best performances from each other, and this is why they are considered “The Ultimate Love Team.”
All in all, A Second Chance is by far one of the best movies that I have seen. I went with that journey with Popoy and Basha and experienced their joy, and their pain as if I was right with them. It was a movie that left me sobbing like an idiot without me even noticing; it was movie that got me to think and feel; it was a movie that moved me, and for this, I thank Direk Cathy Molina for this sequel. It was not just as good as the first movie, which is very difficult to do, but it was even better. I loved it, plain and simple. Piece of advice though, don’t enter the cinema without a hanky. Better yet, bring a towel.