Review: Death of Nintendo

Title: Death of Nintendo
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Director: Raya Martin
Starring: Noel Comia Jr., John Vincent Servilla, Kim Oquendo
Runtime: 1 hr 37 mins

What It Is: In the Philippines during the 90s, Paolo (Comia Jr.) and his friends begin to experience what exists beyond the newest Nintendo game in life as they navigate new relationships, deal with bullies and try to understand how to enter manhood. The looming volcanic eruption and intense summer heat are the least of Paolo’s problems as he tries to navigate adolescence and what it means to grow up.      

What We Think: The first thirty minutes of this film was an absolute chore and while the last hour made up for a fair amount of the movie’s flaws, there’s really not much going on here other than a charming yet lackluster coming of age flick. The nostalgic qualities are certainly redeeming but trying to find any elements that scream unconventional or unique is a losing battle. There’s just not much going on with the plot or characters that don’t fall under the coming of age tropes and genre conventions that just can’t stand on their own. Everything, from the story to the acting to the cinematography, was about as average as you’d expect. However, there were sparse moments of originality and an interesting storyline throughout that came together in a pretty momentous way at the end, ensuring that not every aspect of this film would prove to be easily forgettable. Suffice it to say, there are not too many positive things to say about this but it’s certainly not the worst coming-of-age movie out there.

Our Grade: D+, This film probably could and should get a slightly higher rating but on numerous occasions the subtitles on the screener I viewed were unreadable because of their placement. That led to an even more frustrating viewing experience than the uninspired content called for. I don’t care enough about this film to hate it but I’m disappointed that so much of it felt like a waste of time. If you’re someone who grew up during the 90s or in the Philippines, then there might be reason for you to watch this film if you’re feeling nostalgic. For the rest of you, feel confident in your decision to not give this one over ninety minutes of your time.

Author: Cal Gessner