Batang West Side - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Batang West Side Reviews

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½ December 10, 2012
A Filipino teenager is shot in the head in a sidewalk in New Jersey. A Filipino police detective is given the task to uncover the truth about the murder. The film is comprised mostly of flashbacks of family members, friends, witnesses and suspects. First released in 2001, this is one of the more recent Filipino masterpieces. Despite its infamous 5-hour running time and relatively slow pace, it never feels dragging or boring. It's a compelling, dense thought-provoking drama. It's GORGEOUSLY shot, a real work from a master filmmaker and with a fine ensemble of actors too. Word is that producers begged director Diaz to cut it down to three hours to make it more commercially viable but he refuses and frankly, it was a good call. I can't imagine cutting out a single hour from this magnificent piece of work.
November 25, 2006
Lav Diaz's masterpiece is an epic, five-hour look at the Filipino-American community and its various social classes, its several generations, its cliques, friendships, families, and dirty secrets. Along with Mario O'Hara's Pangarap ng Puso (Demons, 2000), it's a new direction for Philippine cinema.
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