The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros Reviews

  • Sep 25, 2014

    'The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros' is such a beautiful take on Manila street life. The themes of poverty and homosexuality are out there in the movie, but the movie doesn't try to sensationalize them; they just act as a backdrop, and add flavour to the story. Both the themes are explored with refreshing honesty, and shown as a reality to be accepted and lived. The movie is essentially about family, love, and crime. Despite the themes, the content in the movie is quite PG; therefore it can be enjoyed by a person of any age. The lead character, 12-year old Maximo (Maxi, as he's affectionately called), is a flamboyant young guy who spends his days watching movies with friends and collecting bets for his brothers. After his mother's death, he has taken over the household duties of cooking, cleaning, etc. Being an openly effeminate lad living in a slum, you would expect him to be an object of chide and ridicule, but it's not the case. Instead, we see him being accepted and loved quite lavishly by everyone around, with no questions asked. The story mainly shows how Maxi is torn between his love for a young police officer and his loyalty towards his family, comprising of his dad and hoodlum brothers. All the characters in the movie and intriguing, well-developed, and quite lovable; no matter what they do or end up doing, you can actually sympathize and see where they come from. The movie has a very sweet and unique charm to it, right from the very beginning scene, where you see Maxi walk home in his usual flamboyant way, and his eldest brother (standing among friends) pulls his leg by asking, 'Who have you been flirting with?', and Maxi mocks their laughter. Despite the Christian influence in the town, you can see (ironically) how the people are much more acceptant and tolerant than their urban counterparts. The camera-work has quite an indie feel to it, but it doesn't come off as trying too hard. You get lost in these characters' day-to-day lives. The acting by everyone involved is quite brilliant; it almost seems like a documentary. The film has so many moments which melt your heart completely - when Maxi tries to be on his elder brother's side when their dad is abusing and hitting him for something seriously bad he did, when Maxi takes care of the police officer after his brothers beat him up, When Maxi's second brother consoles him after hi love has been rejected, when Maxi is trying to convince his brothers not to set out for revenge. Besides these scenes, the movie is filled with quite a few unique and memorable scenes. Do yourself a favour - if the movie strikes some deep emotional chord with you, please let yourself cry. Many things happen towards the end, and you can see young Maximo blossoming out of his naivete and innocence. The ending is quite emotionally satisfying. It's a delightful and heartwarming film; with proper exposure, it could very well become a modern-day classic.

    'The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros' is such a beautiful take on Manila street life. The themes of poverty and homosexuality are out there in the movie, but the movie doesn't try to sensationalize them; they just act as a backdrop, and add flavour to the story. Both the themes are explored with refreshing honesty, and shown as a reality to be accepted and lived. The movie is essentially about family, love, and crime. Despite the themes, the content in the movie is quite PG; therefore it can be enjoyed by a person of any age. The lead character, 12-year old Maximo (Maxi, as he's affectionately called), is a flamboyant young guy who spends his days watching movies with friends and collecting bets for his brothers. After his mother's death, he has taken over the household duties of cooking, cleaning, etc. Being an openly effeminate lad living in a slum, you would expect him to be an object of chide and ridicule, but it's not the case. Instead, we see him being accepted and loved quite lavishly by everyone around, with no questions asked. The story mainly shows how Maxi is torn between his love for a young police officer and his loyalty towards his family, comprising of his dad and hoodlum brothers. All the characters in the movie and intriguing, well-developed, and quite lovable; no matter what they do or end up doing, you can actually sympathize and see where they come from. The movie has a very sweet and unique charm to it, right from the very beginning scene, where you see Maxi walk home in his usual flamboyant way, and his eldest brother (standing among friends) pulls his leg by asking, 'Who have you been flirting with?', and Maxi mocks their laughter. Despite the Christian influence in the town, you can see (ironically) how the people are much more acceptant and tolerant than their urban counterparts. The camera-work has quite an indie feel to it, but it doesn't come off as trying too hard. You get lost in these characters' day-to-day lives. The acting by everyone involved is quite brilliant; it almost seems like a documentary. The film has so many moments which melt your heart completely - when Maxi tries to be on his elder brother's side when their dad is abusing and hitting him for something seriously bad he did, when Maxi takes care of the police officer after his brothers beat him up, When Maxi's second brother consoles him after hi love has been rejected, when Maxi is trying to convince his brothers not to set out for revenge. Besides these scenes, the movie is filled with quite a few unique and memorable scenes. Do yourself a favour - if the movie strikes some deep emotional chord with you, please let yourself cry. Many things happen towards the end, and you can see young Maximo blossoming out of his naivete and innocence. The ending is quite emotionally satisfying. It's a delightful and heartwarming film; with proper exposure, it could very well become a modern-day classic.

  • Apr 28, 2014

    Maximo Oliveros is the genderqueer son of a criminal family. His mother has passed away and he now keeps house for his father and two brothers whilst their shady dealings provide. A new policeman moves into the neighbourhood. Young and idealistic. One night he saves Maximo from an assault and a kinship is formed. Pretty soon Maximo has fallen into infatuation with the policeman (victor) and his loyalty to his family becomes rather stretched. An admirable blatantly low budget second film from director Auraeus Solito. The realism of the Filipino slum setting is overwhelming. Combining actual residents with the actors is key here and brings a thoroughly believable atmosphere. The newcomer Nathan Lopez is delightful in the lead. He needs to work on his crying acting though. Constant sniffing proved most annoying. It is a worthwhile watch, but by no means a perfect film. It takes a good while to get going. A strange start with Maximo playing at Miss World with his girlfriends went on for far too long. The establishment of the locale's acceptance of Maximo's genderqueerness and his own comfort in it was established quite quickly. The storyline just took forever to get started. Once it did though, you are brought in and it is a wonder where it will go. Satisfying ending? I'll leave it to you to decide.

    Maximo Oliveros is the genderqueer son of a criminal family. His mother has passed away and he now keeps house for his father and two brothers whilst their shady dealings provide. A new policeman moves into the neighbourhood. Young and idealistic. One night he saves Maximo from an assault and a kinship is formed. Pretty soon Maximo has fallen into infatuation with the policeman (victor) and his loyalty to his family becomes rather stretched. An admirable blatantly low budget second film from director Auraeus Solito. The realism of the Filipino slum setting is overwhelming. Combining actual residents with the actors is key here and brings a thoroughly believable atmosphere. The newcomer Nathan Lopez is delightful in the lead. He needs to work on his crying acting though. Constant sniffing proved most annoying. It is a worthwhile watch, but by no means a perfect film. It takes a good while to get going. A strange start with Maximo playing at Miss World with his girlfriends went on for far too long. The establishment of the locale's acceptance of Maximo's genderqueerness and his own comfort in it was established quite quickly. The storyline just took forever to get started. Once it did though, you are brought in and it is a wonder where it will go. Satisfying ending? I'll leave it to you to decide.

  • Jun 04, 2013

    Não conheço nada de cinema filipino, mas a sinopse de Maximo me chamou a atenção. Uma pena que o filme não engrene, apesar dos personagens serem interessantes o roteiro tenta cair para um lado policial que é menos interessante. Não que seja de todo mal, o relacionamento entre o menino e o policial, a aceitação da família, a descoberta da sexualidade são pontos fortes e acima de tudo o diretor merece respeito porque filmar isso na Filipinas não deve ter sido fácil. O menino tá ótimo no papel, facilmente você percebe uma evolução no decorrer do filme. Não é imperdível, mas vale.

    Não conheço nada de cinema filipino, mas a sinopse de Maximo me chamou a atenção. Uma pena que o filme não engrene, apesar dos personagens serem interessantes o roteiro tenta cair para um lado policial que é menos interessante. Não que seja de todo mal, o relacionamento entre o menino e o policial, a aceitação da família, a descoberta da sexualidade são pontos fortes e acima de tudo o diretor merece respeito porque filmar isso na Filipinas não deve ter sido fácil. O menino tá ótimo no papel, facilmente você percebe uma evolução no decorrer do filme. Não é imperdível, mas vale.

  • Jan 08, 2013

    An delightful tale of young soul in conflict between family and love, Solito's "...Maximo Oliveros" touches a delicate subject with earnest subtlety and tact, crafting one of the brightest Filipino films.

    An delightful tale of young soul in conflict between family and love, Solito's "...Maximo Oliveros" touches a delicate subject with earnest subtlety and tact, crafting one of the brightest Filipino films.

  • Nov 26, 2012

    The feelings you get. The visual poetry (like the flower amidst the trash in the beginning of the movie).. It's a film that shows that seeds of beauty can sprout in the human nature, even in corrupt sh*tholes like the Philippines.

    The feelings you get. The visual poetry (like the flower amidst the trash in the beginning of the movie).. It's a film that shows that seeds of beauty can sprout in the human nature, even in corrupt sh*tholes like the Philippines.

  • Aug 08, 2012

    Such an honest depiction of the struggle of a certain Filipino sub sect. Wake up, America, this is the plight of other parts of the world.

    Such an honest depiction of the struggle of a certain Filipino sub sect. Wake up, America, this is the plight of other parts of the world.

  • Jul 22, 2012

    One of the best indie there is and kudos to Solito to dwell on an diverse subject. Yet the setting and tone is still in the cliche poverty of most Filipino films.

    One of the best indie there is and kudos to Solito to dwell on an diverse subject. Yet the setting and tone is still in the cliche poverty of most Filipino films.

  • Jun 28, 2012

    What a film; a movie about family living in poverty and having to resort to petty crime to make a living. You get a raw view of how the people live in the slum areas of Manila. The youngest son Maximo is an effeminate 12 year old boy that fills in the roll of his deceased mother and he ends up falling for the new young police officer, the show handles that relationship with great sensitivity never crossing any lines. This brings Maxi in conflict with his family and things spiral out of control but luckily there was a light at the end of the tunnel. Maxi and his brothers found that light in each other, showing that when a family sticks together they can endure and overcome great hardships.

    What a film; a movie about family living in poverty and having to resort to petty crime to make a living. You get a raw view of how the people live in the slum areas of Manila. The youngest son Maximo is an effeminate 12 year old boy that fills in the roll of his deceased mother and he ends up falling for the new young police officer, the show handles that relationship with great sensitivity never crossing any lines. This brings Maxi in conflict with his family and things spiral out of control but luckily there was a light at the end of the tunnel. Maxi and his brothers found that light in each other, showing that when a family sticks together they can endure and overcome great hardships.

  • May 24, 2012

    A movie event that allows us to witness the real, dark but witty scenario in the slum areas of Manila.

    A movie event that allows us to witness the real, dark but witty scenario in the slum areas of Manila.

  • May 01, 2012

    Wonderful and great surprise.

    Wonderful and great surprise.