‘Bomba’ rated R-13 without cuts on second MTRCB review

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Allen Dizon in 'Bomba.'

Just four days after Ralston Jover’s controversial drama “Bomba” was slapped with an X rating by the Movie Television Review and Classification Board, the producers re-submitted the same cut of the film for a second review and, this time, received a more favorable R-13 rating from a different review committee.

Jover proudly posted a photo of the MRTCB’s Permit for Theatrical Distribuition which revealed that the committee members who reviewed “Bomba” this time consisted of Alexis Lumbatan, Cristina Concordia, Alfonso Mendoza, Bibeth Orteza and Roland Tolentino.

In granting “Bomba” an R-13 rating, the committee wrote, “The film is attuned with the event of the times. No accusing finger is pointed to anyone or any sector of the society. The relationship between the adult and the minor is implied, and there is not even a kissing scene or a torrid embrace. The content of the film falls within the parameters of the applicant’s preferred classification of R-13.”

“Quickly resolved. Thanks to the new viewing members of the MTRCB, (see names on pic). They classified. Their collective comment is perfectly attuned to our best intentions for our film. Heartfelt thanks,” Jover posted in reacting to the review committee’s favorable feedback/

The said comments are in stark contrast to the initial feedback from the first review committee that voted 2-1 in favor of an X rating for the film.

In a letter addressed to “Bomba” producer Dennis Evangelista, the MTRCB explained that the initial X rating was due to the following reasons: “material contains adult theme; blood and violence; illicit relationship with a minor; children using cuss words and language; depiction of improper use of uniform and no redeeming value.”

Jover earlier identified the two MTRCB members that voted to give “Bomba” an X rating as Evelyn Quinsay and Njel de Mesa. Quinsay is the wife of Department of the Interior and Local Government assistant secretary Nestor Quinsay, Jr. who was also the former Philippine National Police Intelligence Director. De Mesa, is a screenwriter who recently co-wrote the Treb Monteras’ celebrated Cinemalaya indie, “Respeto.”

Set against the backdrop of extrajudicial killings in the country, “Bomba” is the story of a middle-aged deaf and mute man played by Allen Dizon who has a dark past and is involved in a “taboo relationship” with a 16-year-old girl portrayed by Angellie Nicholle Sanoy. The title refers to the disabled man who is like a ticking bomb ready to explode.

The film is scheduled to have its world premiere this month as part of the main competition section in this year’s Warsaw International Film Festival in Poland.

In an interview with InterAksyon, Jover said the producers will announce the film’s playdates for its theatrical run after its stint in the Warsaw festival.