Over the years, Viva Films and GMA Pictures have created brilliant and unforgettable movies and TV series together. And now, they have strengthened their partnership even more with a fresh and feel-good film that will take you back in time—Video City.
Written and directed by Raynier F. Brizuela (Mang Jose, Puto), Video City stars The New Face of Romance-Drama, Yassi Pressman, and Action Drama Prince, Ruru Madrid, as Ningning and Han respectively. Two people from different times, they meet each other in a Video City store, the country’s favorite video rental place back in the '90s.
Han, a film student in the present year, is feeling uninspired to finish his thesis. After attending a tribute event for his mother, a renowned director who is now seriously ill, Han enters an old internet cafe. Playing with a VHS tape rewinder, he suddenly finds himself transported to year 1995. Miraculously, the cafe is now a Video City branch.
Working as a Video City staff, Ningning attends to Han, and he is mesmerized by her personality. Han is able to return to 2023, but now that he’s unlocked a portal to the past, he decides to keep coming back to see Ningning.
Han learns that Ningning has been auditioning to be an actress, but is unlucky to get into show business. The more he gets to know her, the deeper he falls in love with her. But each day that he returns to her world, the duration of his stay gets shortened.
Though they become each other’s inspiration to overcome their struggles in life, can these two people who are timelines apart really have a future together?
During the story conference held in May, Direk Raynier reveals that this film was inspired by his own experience. As young as eight years old, he was already renting movies at a Video City store in Navotas near their house, and there was a nice staffer there (“Ate” as he calls her) who made recommendations of movies that he could rent for three days, like Back to the Future.
"Laking Video City talaga ako," recounts Direk Raynier. "Medyo crush ko si Ate. Eventually noong high school na ako, na-realize ko na kaya ako na in-love sa pelikula, isa siya sa factor. Sabi ko, what if mag-time travel ako at balikan ko si Ate. Doon nagsimula ang idea ng Video City. What if ma-meet ko ulit itong tao na naka-connect ko before, ang taong nag-inspire sa akin na gumawa ng pelikula?”
Yassi was born in 1995, while Ruru was born in 1997, but they also experienced borrowing movies in CD format from Video City. They both recall that watching those rented CDs was one of their favorite bonding moments with their respective families back in the day.
So, when the movie was offered to Yassi, she was instantly excited to do it. “This was one of the stories that I fell in love with on the same day (of the pitch), sinabi ko na, 'Okey, gusto ko pong gawin ‘yan.'”
It’s been ten years since Yassi and Ruru last worked together in GMA shows like Party Pilipinas, Dormitoryo, and Sunday All Stars, but Yassi said that she felt comfortable upon learning that he will be her leading man. And during their workshop, she saw that Ruru is still the same humble guy that she met before. She also admires that he is “very hungry and very passionate” with his craft. “Nakaka-excite na ibigay namin 'yong all namin,” she says.
Meanwhile, Ruru complimented Yassi for being like a ray of sunshine. “Every time na pumasok siya sa k'warto, mabibigyan niya ng kulay ang k'warto na ‘yon.” Asked about how they are going to build their chemistry, Ruru replies, “Once na ibigay lang 'yung puso sa bawat eksena na ginagawa namin, 'yung chemistry kusang lalabas po 'yon.” Yassi adds that as long as they stay true to their characters, “may magic po na mangyayari,” and the audience will feel that.
Come and feel the magic and nostalgia brought by Video City (Be kind. Please rewind.)
The nostalgic film also stars TJ Valderrama as Jepp (Video City attendant), Dennis Padilla as an old school café attendant, Chad Kinis as Boss (Video City store branch owner), Bodjie Pascua as Han’s thesis adviser, Suzette Ranillo as Han’s flm director mom, Soliman Cruz as Han’s father, Yvette Sanchez and Ashley Diaz as Han’s classmates.
Video City (Be kind. Please rewind.) opens in cinemas nationwide on Wednesday, September 20, 2023.
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