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Villa Estrella: Movie Review

Filipinos have always loved watching horror films - that is why producers make it a point to make at least one horror flick during the Metro Manila Film Festival. The last good local horror movies in recent memory are probably the ones made by Star Cinema like "Feng Shui" and "Sukob". However, we cannot say the same for their last horror entry "T2" which starred Maricel Soriano. Star Cinema is once again presenting a horror film, "Villa Estrella" that showcases the hottest young stars today. How will this fair in the horror-loving Filipino audience? Click to find out.

Anna (Shaina Magdayao) and her ex-boyfriend Alex (Jake Cuenca) are headed to Villa Estrella, an old family resort owned by Anna and her family. Alex is tasked to restore the resort and while they spend the next few nights at Villa Estrella, scary things start to happen. They are confronted by roaming spirits who take people away and Anna finally finds out the reason behind her recurring nightmare.

So let’s start off with the good things about the movie. First, we were surprised with the decent story line. Let’s face it, horror films focus more on special effects and sounds, neglecting the story behind all the scary scenes. "Villa Estrella" came up with a very good story so props to the writers. Second is that the actors were pretty good. Shaina Magdayao who played Anna is definitely ready for bigger movie roles and Maja Salvador showed decent acting as well. Now comes the bad part. The movie isn’t really that scary so those who love screaming inside the movie house might get disappointed. Another is the “monster” actually came out very ridiculous – probably due to the low budget for special effects. We would have opted if they just sticked with the white lady effect than pushing it further. Lastly, there were weak characters, namely Alex (Jake Cuenca) and Geoff Eigenmann who played Anna’s secret boyfriend. Overall, the movie isn’t really at par with the success of previous Star Cinema horror flicks, but it is better than the last movie "T2".

Rating: 2 reels

Why you should watch it:
- very good acting from Shaina and Maja
- no nonsense story for a Filipino horror flick

Why you shouldn’t watch it:
- some scenes turned out to be funny, instead of scary
- if you are expecting it to be as good as "Feng Shui" or "Sukob"

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