'Family of Two' wins hearts slowly till complete surrender

Sharon Cuneta and Alden Richards in a scene from 'Family of Two'

"Family of Two (A Mother and Son Story)" could be one of the more refreshing Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) offerings come Dec. 25. Unlike most movies, the uncomplicated story of love between the two lead characters won't have viewers expecting things to unravel with mind-blowing twist, but simply rooting for best outcome for them having fallen in love with both mere minutes after being allowed into their lives.

The movie from Cineko Productions stars Sharon Cuneta and Alden Richards. He plays a son who seeks to find a partner for his widowed mother while tending to his own lovelife and career.

When we attended the red carpet premiere of the movie at Trinoma Cinema last Dec. 17, we had zero knowledge about the movie so this made us open to taking on both merits and demerits.

If you love light drama and comedy, this movie is for you. If you like films with a lesson, you watch this. Fine acting with roles custom-fit for the cast? It's here. "Family of two" will have you thinking of family, of what's important in life, of self-worth, of the sacrifices we willingly make for loved ones---all by the time the credits roll.

Minuses? None. We only wish it didn't take Sharon two decades to have joined the MMFF after "Crying Ladies" in 2003.  

It's not just Sharon and Alden who delivered in the movie. Even their co-actors Tonton Gutierrez and Jackie Lou Blanco deserve pat on the back, but especially Miles Ocampo, who plays Alden's girlfriend; and Soliman Cruz, whose appearance in the movie, while brief, is truly memorable. 

Some things occurred to us about Sharon and Alden  while we were watching certain scenes in "Family of Two":

*It only takes two, three seconds seeing Sharon cry for viewer to get affected. And she doesn't even have to say anything nor does the camera have to show her entire face for her to do that! Especially in mother roles such as this one, Sharon is tops.

*Alden shines when he plays good boy. We know that he has been around the industry and so he wants to do edgier characters sometimes. But,  really, the kind of role he has in "Family of Two" just comes off naturally, effortlessly for him.

*Alden and Sharon must have really bonded well even before they shot the movie. Their onscreen chemistry is a great study on give and take when it comes to acting. Each is so sure of who his character is in relation to the other that viewers can't help but invest in their lives seeing how genuine, lovable both are.

Directed by Nuel Naval and written by Mel Mendoza del Rosario, "Family of Two" should be seen on Day One of this year's MMFF run.