Ang Babaeng Humayo (The Women who Left) Filipino Movie Review
To appreciate this film is to understand Lav Diaz, the director. His movies, let's say, are either you like them or you don't. His films are known for being very long and experimental. If you're looking for a film that is fast-paced then his movies are not like that. They usually consist of primarily wide shots, long takes, and a whole lot of philosophical conversation. "Ang Babaeng Humayo" is no different and somehow is more of a slow burn then the other movie I saw of his, "Norte, The End of History".
Regarded as the comeback film of Charo Santos-Concio, "Ang Babaeng Humayo" tells a story of a woman, played by Santos, who gets wrongly imprisoned for thirty years. Soon she finds out that it was all planned by her ex-husband (Michael De Mesa) and now she seeks revenge. That plot may sound interesting, and it is, but you do have to realize that it is not really a revenge film at all. It's is mainly Horacia (Charo Santos-Concio), looking for her ex-husband and meeting people from all walks of life along the way. And when I say all walks of life, its either people who are deeply disturbed, or have been abused at one point in their life. The thing about this movie is that it is a lot of depressing, without really anything to liven it up. Yes, these people she comes across are humorous to watch, but it is mostly nervous laughter when watching them. They are not fun to watch and will depress you.
The thing is Lav Diaz films usually captivate me for about the first hour, before I have to stop. And thats how I think people should watch this movie. Simply giving themselves a break from this world and its characters. There are lots of times that I was like "Get to the point!", especially when they they linger on a shot for two minutes. This movie is definitely not for me, but that doesn't mean there aren't great moments of gold in it. It's just because it will require a heck of a lot of patience.