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In one way or another, you must have heard someone say that marriage is no walk in the park.  I’ve heard it but hey— how hard can it be when you’re married with the right mate and you’re fully aware that marriage takes hard work.  But it gets testy at times and very very trying.  Who knew?

Months ago, I married the girl of my dreams and everything else just seems rosy.   Up until the point that we got married we really haven’t had any serious big fight in the 14 years that we’ve known each other.  It was a match made it heaven.  But I guess it doesn’t help that she’s based in Dubai and I’m based in Manila.   The plan before we got married was to check in and out of Dubai to look for job opportunities.  That changed.  After a series of event and discussions which I won’t elaborate for now, I gave in — I resigned from my job to move to Dubai.

To begin with, I’m not 100% about it.  I have my apprehensions.  As the husband, of course, I want to be stable and being stuck in a foreign country without a job is totally not a picture of stability.  Wives, you should understand that this is completely emasculating for a man.  Just like that you are all designed with the instinct to get pregnant, men are instinctively providers.  Take away a man’s career and chances are he’ll be a slob and just lose it.   I’m trying to be positive about the move but the job market is not exactly encouraging but I’m comforted by the fact that I have a savings that can potentially cover expenses for a few months.

Just tonight we just had another argument about the move.  She booked a visa for three months without even consulting me!  Since I’m the one moving, of course I want to be consulted in all the details.  The last agreement that we had is I’ll just apply for 1 month and apply for a spouse visa when I get there because (1) it makes much more sense since I get to screen the employers that will just use an employment sponsorship visa to as leverage to give poor benefits (fyi, in Dubai, they have an employment ban if you leave your job for another company); (2) it’s cheaper.  She said she sent me a text message which I totally didn’t get.  She said she tried to call me but somehow I didn’t receive any call.  She said that it’s not her intention to make a decision but she had to make a decision because already lined up for our hours!  I know that it’s not in her intention but couldn’t she just postpone the visa application until she has consulted me about it?

As it is, I already feel emasculated with the idea of being a “house-band” when I move there.  And to get left out of decisions concerning myself is just too much for me to ignore.  Again, wives, be sensitive enough not to emasculate your husbands… I mean, cmon!

I got very curious of Brillante Mendoza’s work after his victory at Cannes for the film “Kinatay”. I saw one of his films years before, “Masahista” (The Masseur) and I wasn’t really a big fan. I just didn’t care much for the style or the storytelling ability. The film just doesn’t show the promise or the makings of a great director.

I’ve heard so much about “Serbis” and “Kinatay”. Most of it strong reactions of how raw it is and the director himself was blatant to say that he intends to do the kind of films that you’ll either hate or love. I choose to reserve judgment until I get to see both films. After seeing “Serbis”, I have to say that Brillante Mendoza improved a lot from the time he made “Masahista”. While the film is not outstandingly brilliant or groundbreaking, I definitely saw a lot of promise there. I get the lack of plot. It was intentional, it was meant to be a slice of life, a day in the life of a family in moral decadence. What I don’t get is the lack of perspective and “voice”. While the director seemingly takes the observation post and chooses to reserve judgment, the fact that you choose what to show in front of the audience is an obvious statement that you’re condemning that “immorality” has become a normalcy in the lives of the Filipino people. I know another layer to it that everything is just a parallelism to the Philippine movie industry. I’m not criticizing the judgment but at least if you’re going to say something, commit to it rather than putting it as an undertone. Take for example, the kid who took the extra change and lied about it. If the director just really wants to stay on the observation post and reserve judgment, then the camera has no business following the kid. By choosing to show it, you have obviously taken a stand. Not that I’m looking for a rationalization or a justification the cause for the degradation of morality of the whole family but if you’re showing it as something wrong, I certainly wouldn’t mind a progression on how the lack of morality would drive these people. Putting it on a plain field just makes the whole thing monotonous.

I haven’t had the chance to see “Kinatay” but from the reviews that I have read, it had the same problem. Brillante Mendoza has the eye and the promise to make it as a great director but if he keeps on serving the same thing and committing the same mistakes, then I wouldn’t be surprised he’ll soon be buried in the pile.

My rating: 6.5/10

IMDB Rating: 6.4

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