Last week, I had the privilege of seeing 1st Ko Si 3rd for the second time.
I first watched it about two years back, when it was shown in cinemas for the 2014 Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival. I remember being drawn to the film’s narrative, and how it carefully unraveled its grand message, the lesson that made it a clear standout in my top movies list.
This time I watched it with my boyfriend, JV, in this lovely little cinema in San Juan where they show mostly indie films. The place is cozy, homey, which made watching the movie feel more personal.
This isn’t exactly a movie review, but more an ode to a wonderful story that resonated with me because I was able to identify with Nova Villa’s character, Corazon.
For many years, Corazon longed for the love she believed she felt for and from her high school sweetheart, Third. In her head, he was the ideal guy: the type who can make her swoon with his sweet ways and good looks, the one who could’ve made her happy for the rest of her life.
But, a little accident prevented Corazon and Third’s love story to fully bloom and Corazon ended up with Alejandro.
Alejandro isn’t the dreamy guy she had great chemistry with. In fact, on their first meeting, they didn’t have anything to talk about at all. But they still became husband and wife (probably just for the sake of) and they lived their many years together in expectation and routine.
And that’s when the viewer begins to root for Corazon and Third to finally meet, so they can relive yesterday and perhaps explore a new chapter together. Alejandro is therefore painted as the second option, the one in the background who was just there when the timing was better, more convenient.
This is the reason why I love, love, love this film. It leads viewers to believe in the idealization of Third in Corazon’s mind. That is, until the last 15 to 20 minutes of the film make us realize that love isn’t the one that’s ideal — love is the one that’s REAL.
Love isn’t the serenades, the chase-you-on-the-meadow cheesiness, and other kilig moments that linger for many years. Love is letting someone watch her favorite TV show even if you want to watch something else too. Love is letting her do the things that make her happy. Love is fixing a broken down car just so you can teach her how to drive.
Most important of all, love is not giving up on your loved one and not choosing the easy way out even if you could opt to.
I am still brought to some tears as I write this, remembering the movie’s scenes. 1st Ko Si 3rd is a poignant little film that will stay with me for a long time. It’s a film I highly recommend to older couples and to viewers my age who want a refreshing and thoughtful take on the subject of love.
I learned a lot (and cried a lot in the cinema too haha) from this darling of a film. Sometimes funny, a bit sad, but triumphant in its goal to show the ways older people look at love, I won’t mind watching 1st Ko Si 3rd for a third time or over and over again. 🙂