A Hard Day: Movie Review

A Hard Day Movie Review: Crazy Flawed yet Crazy Awesome

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"A Hard Day" starts off very rough especially with an unlikeable and immoral protagonist at the center of its story. But stay with it even if you feel like its not worth your time. Because as bad as its first half was, its second half was blissfully frenetic and awesome.

On his way to his mother's funeral,  Detective Edmund Villon (Dingdong Dantes) accidentally kills a man with his car. Instead of reporting it to the police, Villon decides to hide the body inside his mother's coffin. Soon after his mother's funeral, Villon receives a call from a mysterious caller who reveals that he knows what Villon did. Blackmailed, Villon has no choice but to follow the man's whims. But when the stakes become too much, how can Villon fight back without revealing his crime in the process?

We're aware that this is a remake of the 2014 Korean film of the same name but this review will be completely independent of any influence of its inspiration since we have never seen it yet. So judging " A Hard Day", the Filipino remake, on its own merit, the film was not perfect but found its footing to be different and extremely entertaining. Honestly though, we struggled to like the film in its first half as Edmund Villon was a character that was just unlikable. He's a corrupt detective who drunk drives, beats up people, and tries to get away with murder. His immoral actions were never really given any context or background to balance it out so it was hard to like this evil person. The first half also had a pretty much straight-forward approach so it further exacerbates our hatred for Villon as we couldn't find anything else to peak our attention.

But the film eventually got a whole lot better when the character of John Arcilla arrives. His character Lt. Franco was the perfect foil to Villon. A person who is more evil, more scheming, and more corrupt than Villon. As expected, Arcilla was also entertaining as Lt. Franco from his bravado and to his surprising funny banter, without Franco, this film would have sucked bad. If the first half was straight-forward, the second half was just crazy nonsense in a good way. The film's developments in its latter portions were aloof but the fast-pace meant that we were hard-pressed to notice any of these flaws until after the credits rolled. The fight sequences in particular were a highlight (but not so much the car chases). Overall, "A Hard Day" is a massively flawed experience but these flaws turned out to be quite forgivable given the entertainment value it gives in return. 

Rating: 3 and a half reels

Why you should watch it:
- the banter between Dantes and Arcilla was the highlight of this film
- the crazy second half completely salvages this film from utter ruin

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- the first half was a bore
- the car chases was laughably bad
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