REVIEW: Superb acting, nail-biting scenes highlight Araw Gabi finale

All good things must come to an end.

But for Adrian (JM de Guzman) and Mich (Barbie Imperial), it was the beginning of forever. But getting there was no easy trek.

As seen in the finale of Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Araw Gabi, they had to endure the climactic scourge of Celestina’s (Rita Avila) wretchedness, and had someone unexpected to help them achieve it.

David (RK Bagatsing) was already prepared to finish off Harriet (Ara Mina) and Virgilio (Raymond Bagatsing) and even showed Celestina “proof” of his slaying on a pic in his cellphone as she held Adrian and Mich captive. But what really happened was that Red (Paulo Angeles) and Kiko (Eric Nicolas) thwarted David while already wounding Virgilio with a gunshot. Red revealed the real culprit behind David’s beloved ex-girlfriend Mia’s (Margo Midwinter) murder and it’s not Adrian as he long believed. It was Celestina.

Gripping revelation

What’s more is yet another gripping revelation.

Tanya (Phoebe Walker) also emerged and divulged what was the biggest bombshell of all—that David is actually a De Alegre—a love child of its patriarch, Don Federico (Johnny Revilla). As such, he is Virgilio’s half-brother and Mich / Ana Vida’s uncle.

Because of this, he feigned carrying out the murders, secretly giving Adrian a pocket knife to set himself free, and flew into a rage against Celestina telling her he already knew her secrets. He would then attack her and her henchmen only to be constrained momentarily as Celestina fled. Adrian then broke free and helped David in overpowering Celestina’s men.

David then told Adrian and Mich to sail off from the island and that he would settle things with Celestina. But as the lovers were able to reach the small boat, Celestina caught up with them and fired her gun, hurting Adrian. David then arrived, and drew his gun, but realized he had ran out of bullets. He still approached an armed Celestina and engaged her in a duel. But having no ammunition left, Celestina gunned him down. A wounded Adrian was able to regain his bearings and snatched Celestina’s gun and hit her with it leaving her momentarily unconscious. He and Mich would then attend to a dying David, but Celestina would then regain consciousness and hold Mich hostage. David told Adrian to just save Mich from Celestina’s clutches and leave him. As Adrian left, David gasped his last breath.

Adrian would then find Celestina pointing a knife at Mich at the edge of a cliff. As Adrian went near, they both lost their balance and fell off, dangling from the edge of the cliff. Adrian would first save Mich and then contemplated if he would do the same for Celestina. Realizing it was not his decision to end her life, he helped Celestina as well, allowing the authorities to arrest her to pay for the numerous crimes she committed.

Jail sentence

Behind bars, Celestina would ask forgiveness from her children Tanya and Red’s , who wholeheartedly pardoned her yet made her realize the gravity of her transgressions and how it was right she would serve a long jail sentence.

And at El Paraiso, Adrian announced he would share the bounty of the island to the local folk as they celebrate the peaceful reunion of the De Alegres, and the promise of never-ending love to Mich, as they kiss by the lighthouse where the compelling narrative all began.

The presentation of the concluding scenes were superbly suspenseful and startling, as we witness the events unfold. Creative and production elements were outstanding, highlighted by impressive camera work and thespic brilliance.

You really can’t take your eyes off JM de Guzman and Barbie Imperial and how their depiction of an inseparable couple was so natural and believable, not to mention scorching!

Acting marvel

RK Bagatsing again provided that acting marvel he had displayed in his previous stint in Wildflower, with the same intensity and impact. He truly is one stupendous talent we must see in upcoming teleseryes.

But we admire Rita Avila the most in this finale, as she quite convincingly carried on the character of Celestina from Vina Morales without fault. You would really think Vina’s portrayal has been deeply embedded in her, with the same vocal tone and mannerism that’s quite unmistakable. She really went a level further in her craft.

Of course, all of this won’t come to fruition without the able creative leadership of directors Theodore Boborol, Don Cuaresma, Myla Gaite and Dick Lindayag who really made each episode stirring and remarkable.