I was one of the people who dismissed My Amnesia Girl as a 50 First Dates rip-off after I saw its trailer for the first time. I tried to avoid it at all costs because I thought that it’s just a money making vehicle to pair two of the brightest stars of Philippine cinema today.

Apollo (John Lloyd Cruz) and Irene (Toni Gonzaga) were the sweetest couple around and everyone thought that they’ll be together forever. But when it’s time for them to say I do, Pol turned into a runaway groom and since then they haven’t seen each other.

Three years later they met again but Irene told Pol she can’t remember him because she has amnesia. Now Pol wants to make amends and try to win her back the second time around. With that synopsis you can’t blame me for coming out with my first conclusion about this movie.

My Amnesia Girl surprised me and at the same time renewed my faith on the Philippine movie industry. The local scene needs more of the likes of Director Cathy Garcia-Molina and writer Jade Castro to come up with fresh movies such as this.

Apollo (John Lloyd Cruz): Para kang tae… Hindi kase kita mapaglaruan. (You are like a piece of crap… I could never play with you.)

What I like about My Amnesia Girl is that it is funny without trying too hard. It’s not the typical Filipino slapstick movie unlike the ones that were recently featured at the 2010 Metro Manila Film Fest. My Amnesia Girl incorporated cheesy and sometimes sleazy pickup lines in the dialogues but it wouldn’t make you cringe when they’re delivered by Pol and Irene.

The chemistry between John Lloyd Cruz and Toni Gonzaga was perfect. They were believable and their innate sense of humor is projected into each scene. Director Molina really knows how to make a good romantic comedy. I bet she can direct one in her sleep.

But what made My Amnesia Girl into the most remarkable movie in 2010 is its minor characters. Pol’s friends, played by Carlos Agassi, Ketchup Eusebio, Joross Gamboa, and J.M. De Guzman provided a lot of laughs in the movie. They acted like a real barkada* who goof around and provided more laughter to the movie audience. Beatriz Saw played Toni’s friend and business partner and the sole eyecandy for me in this movie. Well Angel Locsin had a cameo as Pol’s ex-girlfriend but it was too short. Other actresses who had cameos as Pol’s ex-girlfriend are Kaye Abad, Jodi Sta Maria, and Denise Laurel.

My Amnesia Girl is the only Filipino movie I included in my Top 10 movies of 2010 and it deserves to be in it. One thing that I didn’t like about it is the twist in the end where Pol had an accident and got amnesia just when we all thought that things are turning out good for the couple. But overall My Amnesia Boy, I mean My Amnesia Girl is a wonderful, feel-good movie. It’s one of the best romantic comedies I’ve seen recently.

*Barkada is a Filipino word that means, in simple terms, a group of friends. I chose to use the word barkada because I can’t find an exact translation of it in English. It is not just a group of friends because to us Filipinos, a barkada is as close as you can get to a second family. It is a support group that will be there for you through thick or thin.

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