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The Blossoming Of Maximo Oliveros

33 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

THE BLOSSOMING OF MAXIMO OLIVEROS tells the story of Maxi (Nathan Lopez) a gay, pre-teen growing up in the slums of Manila, who is deeply loyal to his family of petty thieves. His world revolves around his father and two brothers, who love and protect him in return for Maxi s devotion to completing domestic chores and covering their tracks when they commit crimes. When Maxi meets Victor (JR Valentin) a well-meaning, handsome policeman, the two become fast friends and Maxi begins to learn that he can have a better life, which soon incurs the ire and disapproval of Maxi s family. The digitally-shot feature made its U.S. debut at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival and was the official Philippine entry of the 2007 Academy Awards® for Best Foreign Language film. The film has also garnered several film festival awards including the Teddy Award at the 2006 Berlinale Film Festival and Best Asian Film at the 2006 Rotterdam Film Festival.

Review

the film is alarming, endearing, and utterly unflappable. --Dennis Lim, Village Voice

"One of those all-too-rare films that handles preadolescent queerness with intelligence and unflinching honesty!" --Ernest Hardy, LA Weekly

"Has charmed film festival audiences from Sundance to Jerusalem with its refreshingly blasé handling of homosexuality, its amiable actors and its delicacy of milieu." --Nathan Lee, The New York Times

"One of those all-too-rare films that handles preadolescent queerness with intelligence and unflinching honesty!" --Ernest Hardy, LA Weekly

"Has charmed film festival audiences from Sundance to Jerusalem with its refreshingly blasé handling of homosexuality, its amiable actors and its delicacy of milieu." --Nathan Lee, The New York Times


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Soliman Cruz, JR Valentin, Neil Ryan Sese, Ping Medina, Bodjie Pascua
  • Directors: Auraeus Solito
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: TLA Releasing
  • DVD Release Date: August 28, 2007
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000Q677HC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #112,907 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Blossoming Of Maximo Oliveros" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

59 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Hulka on September 24, 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This moving coming of age movie about about a 12 year boy's puppy love for a young cop had this big tough guy bawling like a baby.

Maxi---played by Nathan Lopez---is a sensitive 12-year-old boy whose life has deteriorated into a surrogate existence of his dead mother. Relegated to housekeeping and caring for his criminal father and brothers, Maxi becomes infatuated with a kind and honorable policeman---played by J.R. Valentin. The policeman responds to the boy's infatuation compassionately but behaves responsibly by gently refusing sexual contact. Instead, he befriends Maxi and tries to steer him to a more respectable way of life. But his relationship with Maxi and his family has an unexpected and tragic result.

Did Maxi blossom? Yes, in a big way! Not only did Maxi take his mother's place cooking and cleaning, but he also becomes the heart of his family. It was his big heart that moves his brothers into the future after the tragedy that occurs to the family during the movie.

Turn off the cable TV and watch this quirky, little movie from the Philippines. It's a classic coming-of-age movie that will move and inspire you.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Muskoka Man on June 11, 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
In reading the prior reviews and descriptions of this movie I was not prepared for what an intense drama it really was. Wow.

There are not may movies which would dare to depict a 12 year old boy as truly transgendered and accepted as such by his family, friends and neighbors. His two older brothers even refer to him as their "sister." Most other movies of the "gay coming-of-age" variety show boys encountering their gayness for the first time as masculine, or pretending to be masculine, as their parents and peers try to steer them in the traditional straight/masculine direction. Not Maximo. He acts and dresses like a girl and takes care of the men in his family as if he were female. He adores them and they adore him just as he is. When he does get bullied and threatened with rape by older thugs, his brothers come to the rescue (maybe a little too zealously as it turns out).

In the beginning of the movie and for the first 40 minutes or so, we see Maximo at his most carefree and innocent. He plays games (mostly with girls), dresses up, watches movies, and models exotic women's clothes on a pretend runway. He falls in love with a handsome and kind 20 something policeman. All is well with the world. But as the story unravels we learn secrets about Maximo's family, and especially his father, that force Maximo to question his sense of right and wrong, his view of the world as black/white and good/evil. We also learn things about his policeman/pseudo lover. Everything begins to take on shades of gray and Maximo must choose his loyalties and in the process lose his innocence, and I don't mean sexually.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Exley Cave on August 29, 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
THE BLOSSOMING OF MAXIMO OLIVEROS is masterful on so many levels. One, it's a coming-of-age story expertly structured. Its dramatic momentum, its turning of the screw, is gripping. Motivations are complicated, outcomes surprising. Two, its rendering of Manila is honest, raw, personal, and illuminating. It captures both the hope and the desperation of life in a third world slum. It shows the beauty co-existing with the sludge. It does so without varnish, and without sentimentality. Three, it explores sexual identity in a fresh way. It's been on the festival circuit for a couple of years, selling out everywhere it plays. I'm thrilled to see it's finally released on dvd.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Rolando A. Perez on January 5, 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is not your ordinary gay movie. Caution should be given to those who want to get this movie, as it is about a very young child (12) finding friendship and love in the most unlikely places.

The story line is about the growing up of a very feminine boy. It is set in the Philippines, primarily in the slums of Manila. The movie, is not only a good lesson on an impoverished culture, but on the unity of a family, how they fully accept what he is, even is made up of rough, straight brothers and father.

Maxi, Nathan Lopez, belongs to small neighborly group of boys who are extremely feminine, acting very much like girls. He is a school dropout as other boys pick on him for what he is. He is well liked, both by his family, and other neighbors. He assumes the role of a dead mother in his home, takes care of his father and bothers, he does the cooking, cleaning, and mending around their impoverished home. In turns, they protect him. It is interesting how these rough guys accept him as a girl and encourages him. People can learn from this movie by how a family can function well with a gay member.

Maxi meets a young new cop who moves into the local precinct. Victor, JR. Valentin, befriends this sweet boy, and Maxi develops his first crush. Maxi's closed family starts crumbling down when a series of crimes are committed by members of his family. Victor gets beaten up by them. A new police chief arrives, takes Victor under his wing. Maxi's father gets murdered by this police chief because of some old wounds with this family. This is watched by Maxi and Victor.

Maxi's sexual fantasies of Victor never materialized because of Victor's knowledge of right and wrong (as a cop), and Maxi being a minor.
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