A classic Filipino character is given a modern face-lift.
The second reboot of the film franchise, Ang Panday is the directorial debut of actor Coco Martin, who uses his real name in the directorial credits. Just like the 2016 TV series of the same name, the main narrative of the movie is in a modern setting, with the main character as the grandson of the original Flavio (the one FPJ portrayed).
With his father killed by Lizardo, Flavio III (Martin) is adopted by a midwife and is brought on to live in Manila as an attempt to flee the evil that is hellbent in ending his bloodline. Now a grown man, Flavio III works as a bladesmith and tries to win over Maria (Mariel de Leon). Meanwhile, Lizardo, who is in his new form (Jake Cuenca), adds forces to his armies and plans to succumb the world to darkness. With an intervention from an old hermit (Joonee Gamboa), Flavio III learns of his bloodline and takes a journey across different realms to retrieve the magical sword.
The actors in the movie seem to have fun while shooting this, especially Martin.
The set pieces (esp. the Kingdom of Light) were well done. Most of the costume design served its purpose.
The fight choreography certainly was given effort.
And I just ran out of positive things to say…
The movie had an ensemble cast, but most of them are unnecessary and pointless. Who is this guy? Apparently, the movie does not care also because he’s gone now. Who is guy? Who cares?
Speaking of unnecessary, a looooot of scenes can be cut so we may have a better paced movie. The sub-narrative concerning Flavio III’s adopted brother Diego (Awra Briguela) is completely useless. I understand being gay is okay, but it does not enhance the main narrative at all. Flavio III’s training under Lito Lapid’s character (Did the movie even bother to give him a name? Can’t remember). It was so rushed to the point I consider it…UNNECESSARY.
Also, the movie rushes a lot. It has severe pacing issues. The part where Flavio III was defeated by Lizardo was left with almost zero repercussions because…the very next scene shows him being revived and trained by Lito Lapid’s character and becoming a better swordsman all in the matter of 5 minutes. There was absolutely no time to digest his defeat and his urge to avenge the people who died in the movie.
Also, this has got to be one of the worst ways to show action in your scenes. I can really see the effort in choreographing the fight scenes, but it all went down the drain because of immensely poor camera work.
The costume design for Flavio III was actually good. But for some reason, they decided to change it for the climax. It made him look more like Pedro Penduko…
Another thing… WHO WROTE THIS SCRIPT? It feels like three movies interwoven into one mess! Even the dialogue felt like it’s written by a grade school student.
Lastly, the movie seems to have a hard time deciding if Flavio III is a man of pure heart or a douche.
Ang Panday is a beloved character and franchise, and I am offended that it became this bad… This is…