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average rating is 3 out of 5


Swati Verma


Posted on:

Oct 12, 2023

Film Reviews
Directed by:
Patricia De Jesus
Written by:
Philip Ines
Daniel Makatuwid, Simone Dalisay, Angelo Michael Amorsolo

The director Patricia De Jesus along with the writer Philip Ines utilises the Mockumentary style of filmmaking to showcase the various complications in the lives of the male protagonist Miko (Daniel Makatuwid) and how he deals with his emotions as he discovers something new about himself.


The plot of Mabaw revolves around a Mockumentary on the filming process of BL (Boy Love) movie that stars non LGBTQIA cast.


The yellow colour font utilised for the title of the film-Mabaw has the connotation of anxiety adding multiple layers to the narrative increasing the degree of audience engagement with the content of the film as well as the source material Deep Waters. The short film Mabaw opens with a long shot of a school building and the sound of the bell ringing in the background. The camera quickly pans into the first scene of the movie utilising a series of long shots, Mid-shots, close-up shots, and tracking shots to establish the subject matter of the film. The long shot of the actors introducing the characters they play with the various filmmaking equipments in the background allows the audience a sneak peek into a detailed process. The set design, black white colour tone, camera angles, lighting, dialogues, costume, hair, makeup, and props help complement and add realism and relatability to Mabaw paying tribute to the book Deep Waters and its author.


In terms of performance, Angelo Michael Amorsolo is consultant/ author of Deep Waters draws a parallel between the book Deep waters and its cinematic adaption Mabaw. Amorsolo talks about the emotional journey of a complex love story and a lot of ups and downs in the lives of LGBTQIA youth. It is a continuous search for identity to fit into society and feel loved without being judged for their sexual orientation.

Daniel Makatuwid plays the role of Miko Angeles. The actor feels privileged to bag such an important role and also expresses his gratitude towards the makers for choosing him to become the voice of many youngsters from the LGBTQIA group. Miko is an open-minded and carefree person and wants to be happy despite all the difficulties he has to face due to the choices he made in life. Makatuwid with his acting skills as well as the interviews included keeps the audience eagerly waiting for the climax. He also inspires the viewers to learn from him in real life.

Simone Dalisay plays Elijah Santos the love interest of Miko Angeles. Dalisay portrays the sweet and supportive partner who wants to become the anchor to show the right path with the help of body language, voice modulation, facial expressions, and eyes.


Mabaw talks about the importance of self-love and staying true to one’s personality without worrying about what people will say. The short film reiterates the significance of a more loving and accepting relationship between the parents and their children so that they can be comfortable with each other in every way and lead a peaceful life. The cinematic piece attempts to shed light on the dynamics between the LGBTQIA group and society and how voices are being raised to fight for acceptance despite all the prejudices that still exist.

About the Film Critic
Swati Verma
Swati Verma
Short Film, LGBTQ+
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