Islands is a poignant and engrossing reminder that you're never too old to start living. It's never too late to develop a lust for life.
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Islands is as effective, familiar, and quiet as a microwave.
There are great things to be found in little packages, and Islands offers tremendous evidence that, if Edralin might ever be given more than the bare minimum of resources, the director will create something gigantic.
There’s a cheerful pragmatism to the characters and the piece itself, a reflection and distillation of the caring, musical, religious community in which it is set. Deliberate and unhurried, Islands is also the type of quiet film that happily watches a microwave as it warms chicken adobo for a full minute.
The script is programmatic to the point that its final shot is fully predictable. But that doesn’t take away from the ending’s earned poignancy, nor the freshness of everything that came before.
The narrative arc of Islands, so minimalist it’s really more of a slow bump, is about the gradual breaking down of Joshua’s small shell of comfort, his family and cultural conventions.
It is indeed a good movie, and quite an honest one, yet its setup is so ripe for cut corners and heartwarming chintz that I was almost surprised to see it sidestep the diagram I was expecting. I bet other viewers will have the same reaction.
Edralin’s Islands is a patient debut that reminds us that while our parents are important, our own happiness cannot be understated or ignored. In this sense, through its final seconds, “Islands” is a life-affirming achievement.