The last and final day of the Hawaiian International Film Festival was Sunday November 22nd. I am very glad I was able to make it out for a few flicks on the rainy Sunday afternoon. Again, I was very pleased with how easy it was to get tickets for the films I wished to see. Thankfully, I was able to convince my teammate and special friend Brandon to join me. It was quite nice having someone to enjoy the moment with.
On Sunday afternoon, for my first movie of the night I chose to see Kid Kulafu. The movie followed one of the world’s greatest boxers, Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao. The director Paul Soriano and his cast did an excellent job with this picture, which took place in the rural yet dangerous Philippines. The coming of age biography instantly captivated my attention on the hiff.org website. The exciting trailers as well as the interesting title are what initially evoked me to see the film. Because it was featured in the Hawaiian Premiere Category, I was very excited to be one of the first viewers of this movie.
The movie shows us the long journey and many hardships Manny faced before becoming one of the worlds most famous fighters. He grew up in the Philippines as a young boy living a hand-to-mouth existence. Trying to survive day to day, Manny took his love for boxing and wish to provide a better life for his family into his own hands. As his journey takes him across the countryside into the streets of Manila, he never looks back as he risks everything to become a champion. Competing in grueling fights that are spectated by many people in the country we learn that the young boy Emmanuel is fighting for more than just himself, but also his friends, family and Country.
The young Emmanuel, played by 17-year-old Robert Villar was a pivotal role in the making of this film. This young man did an extraordinary job in showing the character and progression of Manny Pacquiao. As an audience we grew to sympathize and root whole-heartedly for this young star. In my opinion, the performance by Villar is what made this biography so powerful.
The humble Manny Pacquiao is well deserving of his fame and glory. His story has inspired myself, and I’m sure many others to chase our dreams. The film had a powerful underlining aspect of giving recognition to God. Ultimately, Pacquiao strives on giving all of his glory and success to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.