Remember fictional romance. The tone of the narration in the opening scene of the movie is basically used as a technique to emphasize an air of fictional romance. In “Pusang Gala” women became its central characters. The movie emphasizes gender roles. It suggests how gender becomes performative.
The first scene of “Pusang Gala” shows Irma Adlawan carefully washing her body with water scented by rose petals, surrounded by candles. While on the other side of the house, Ricky Davao, the gay character, is shown writing his next romance novel, facing his computer. The camera constantly shifts to the two characters to show emphasis that they are two separate characters.
The story of “Pusang Gala” revolves around the idea of characters waiting for their loved ones who seem lost in their own homes. The camera slowly moves to the characters, slowly making a connection between the two. The female character hears a car engine in the streets, desperately thinking it’s her lover, who comes only when he feels like coming home to her.
The next scenes still highlight the idea of waiting for the lost souls who still haven’t find their way home, lurking in dark streets. And so, a new character is then introduced. He is the lover of the female character who loves to surprise her with his unexpected arrivals. Another macho character is also depicted in the movie. Here we see the gay character’s lover going home to him after weeks of not showing his face around. The two main characters finally gave in after fighting at them and accepted their lost lovers into their own homes.
“Pusang Gala” reflects a society wherein the only escape from reality, mostly in the part of women, is their illusions of romantic fantasy. They desire to believe in the tales that they read from romantic novels. And so, in the first parts of the movie, there is an attempt of the gay writer, one of the main characters, to relate his novel to the life of his female friend.
Eventually, the later parts of the story change from its romantic atmosphere to a closer look of reality. The red roses no longer symbolize love and romance, like the way it is represented in the opening scene of the movie. The red roses become the representation of bleeding hearts and sweet death. The idea of romantic fantasy dies, and a new birth of reality finally grows like the red roses they plant in front of their house.
Pusang gala- a Filipino term for stray cats