It’s no secret that I’m into local romantic films. Since watching Cathy Garcia-Molina’s One More Chance back in college, I have jumped into the almost-cultic bandwagon of Pinoy love movies. I even watched all flicks featuring John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo, the stars of One More Chance, on big screen after their blockbuster hit back in 2007. (By the way, I made a series of articles on the lessons I got from Starting Over Again, a Pinoy rom-com released last year. Check the first article here.)
After 8 years, Star Cinema released A Second Chance, the sequel to One More Chance. One More Chance was about the breaking up and getting back together of Popoy Gonzales (played by John Lloyd) and Basha Eugenio (Bea). A Second Chance was about the married life of Popoy and Basha.
Popoy and Basha (Photo from Youtube.com)
I was doubtful if the sequel can live up to the hype and follow through with the success of its predecessor. I was asking: Can a story about the married life equally match a story about the pre-married life?
To answer my question, I watched A Second Chance last weekend. To my amazement, it matched One More Chance. And for all the lessons one could glean from it, I think it even surpassed its predecessor.
There were lots of lessons from the movie and I would want to share some of my takeaways. Here are 3 things A Second Chance did for me (I’m warning you now of possible spoilers):
First, it gave me a realistic vision of marriage. More often than not, movies give us overly-romanticized ideas about the married and pre-married life. A Second Chance does otherwise. It shows us that while marriage can be a happy union between a man and a woman, it is not without hardships and hard work.
In the film, Popoy and Basha started the marriage well (honeymoon years!). But over the years, their marriage went through conflicts, trust issues, unwise financial decisions, a poor sex life, etc. Their story shows that their marriage, just like others’, is imperfect. After all, marriage is a union of two sinners.
After watching the movie, a friend jokingly remarked, “Ayaw ko na atang mag-asawa” (I think don’t want to get married anymore). My friend was sharing the sentiment of many other singles who saw the film. A Second Chance, thus, did well in giving a realistic, even brutally-realistic, vision of marriage. While it didn’t discourage marriage, it made people think about jumping into a lifelong commitment with another person.
Second, it showed me that husbands need respect from their wives. We could glean many lessons on marriage roles from the movie. But let me zero-in in one aspect: Basha’s loss of respect for Popoy. It’s not overt; it’s subtle.
Here’s how it began: Popoy experienced business challenges that led to financial loss. When Basha learned of it (because Popoy hid it from her), she took over the business, making decisions for it and even disregarding her husbands’ input and past decisions. Subtly, she took over the marriage as well.
Then there was this scene where Popoy admitted that he didn’t want to come home anymore. Why? Because he felt like a failure in the eyes of Basha. Clearly, he had lost the respect of his wife. (It was at this point of the movie that I got teary-eyed. As a man, I could feel that heavy blow to Popoy’s ego.)
But this could be avoided if Popoy had been more open to his wife and together they faced the challenge instead of subtly “switching” roles.
Third, it helped me embrace the present. I may not have been into a relationship before. But that doesn’t mean I’m without heartaches.
I made decisions and acts that led to emotional pains and regrets. I asked myself questions, “What if I did this?” “What if I didn’t say that?” “What if…?” So many “what ifs”!
But I liked what Popoy said towards the end of the movie: “It’s brave to ask ‘what if’, but it’s braver to embrace ‘what is’.” He had learned to accept the fact that an imperfect Popoy is married to an imperfect Basha.
I should stop asking “what ifs” and learn to embrace “what is”. That’s braver. But I think it’s bravest to trust God and entrust “what will be”—the future—to Him.