MY HOUSEHUSBAND...IKAW NA! (Jose Javier Reyes, 2011)
One can't help but feel traces of KASAL, KASALI, KASALO and its sequel, SAKAL, SAKALI, SAKLOLO while watching this movie, especially that it's the same director and the same actors and the same situation (technically). But MY HOUSEHUSBAND, in all fairness is a bit more mature than the mentioned films above, since the main characters (played by real-life husband and wife Ryan and Juday) are already at the stage of survival, the struggle to make ends meet, all the while threading the line of gender equality.
The basic conflict, as overtly expressed as possibly could be, is the role reversal between husband and wife, where husband becomes the mother (in the most primitive sense of the word) and wife becomes the breadwinner; husband battles his own ego, first by refusing to accept that he has lost his job, and second by refusing to accept that his wife has become more professionally successful than him. Predictable as it may be, the story is saved by the engaging performances by Ryan and Juday.
Juday is still the talky, nagging wife (I wish she would come out of her comfort zone); meanwhile, Ryan Agoncillo embodied the husband character battling his ego and social expectations with conviction and charisma. Agoncillo is easily likeable, and his delivery of lines is not just mere memorization, but true character ownership.
The story, written by Mel Del Rosario and Joey Reyes is peppered with humor, mostly involving Eugene Domingo (who exists to spice up the story, and to mirror the conflict of husband and wife). In fact, Domingo who plays Aida, the over-the-top, overeager, and intrusive neighbor is as loud as can be, and more often than not the one-liners hit the spot.
Yet the story could do away with lines that bring the sequence into comical territories, like the hospital scene where Eugene Domingo almost held the dramatic arc of the moment, until a reversion to cheap comedy ruined the effect.
Supporting characters of the movie are one-dimensional- the neighbors are portrayed as nosy gossip mongers, the family of the wife are presented as know-it-all villains (I pity the real-life character that Agot Isidro is supposed to be portraying), and the DOM financing Aida's luxury ought to be in a hospital bed, or in the grave, not housing mistresses (which is very ludicrous).
Neverthless, the movie is still enjoyable if only to watch Ryan and Juday banter and work out real-life marital issues, and to witness Eugene Domingo provide comic relief.