The mockumentary effectively shows the bittersweet life of an iconic film extra. The movie is simple and straightforward but was able to highlight the highs and lows of her career while infusing it with humor.
Lilia Cuntapay is mostly known as the aswang or scary old lady in ’90s horror movies. Although this has garnered her a certain level of fame she suffers from being typecasted, even in real life. Hilarity ensues as the attention she receives half-mocks and half-praises her. If you are familiar with her work, it’s easy to see her as the aswang or scary old lady more than anything else.
The director was able to smartly blend in reality with fantasy. Audiences get glimpses of Cuntapay’s speech that shows what she really feels, hinting at the hardships she has to endure. It’s not just about appreciation, but also acceptance.
In the midst of all the humor, the director was able to show the sad truth about extras without turning it into a telenovela-like expose. As a result, it’s sincere and heartfelt. As a typecasted extra, Cuntapay has to settle for small roles that get smaller and fewer each day (which is always in danger of being edited out), and rare praise from the industry she has dedicated her life to.
At the center of all this is the brilliant performance by Lilia Cuntapay. She’s good at both comedy and drama, reveling in the temporary highs of her glory days, and suffering quietly through the lows of her unappreciated 30-year career.
You already know how this mockumentary will end but you still root for her. The ending is a bit abrupt but leaves the audience with her name, the main fact that people should know and be reminded of.
As the film wraps up you don’t feel pity for Lilia Cuntapay, but appreciation. The mockumentary reminds us that while some roles are a mere blip in a movie screen, this doesn’t mean that the people who do them aren’t worthy of respect.
Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay
Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay is a funny and affecting movie that reminds us of the value of hard work in a superficial industry.