kobe 🎄’s review published on Letterboxd:
ok hear me out imagine a ph adaptation:
Piko: Sino Ang Iyong Pato?
Harang Taga at ang Patintero ng Buhay
Ang Mga Lihim ng Agawan Base
- honestly, episode one was such a bore. it didn't do a great job trying to reel in viewers. i get that the writer wants to humanize the players, adding depths and motivation in their storyline to trigger an ounce of care in their demise, but doing so in the first few eps is lazy storytelling.
- the games, while aesthetically staged in production design, came off corny. they are straightforward and didn't merit any room for imagination or critical thinking. well, yeah they're children's games (what can we expect) but still the payoff for playing these games makes me squirm. eat the rich! you don't just decide one day to mount a gameshow at the expense of a crop of people ㅡ especially when you just want to feel things.
- as much as i have so much to vent re: this film, it did a great job laying the groundwork. the poor was continually driven by their debts. helpless, they chose to risk their lives with their own free will for a chance to win. while the rich are bolstered by their thirst to feel until eventually they both come together in a simulated setup with a single purpose: to live, albeit a day more.
the story has good foundation but somehow lost its substance treading the storyline. there are pacing issues, mediocre acting towards the latter episodes, and weak subplot for the policeman and his brother; and as per usual, these missing parts may be attributed to the film's supposed thrust as a launching pad for an imminent season.