Death of Nintendo (2020)

Death of Nintendo (2020)

A deceptively thoughtful coming-of-age story that knows how to use nostalgia



Philippines, United States of America
Comedy, Drama
Agot Isidro, Elijah Alejo, Jigger Sementilla
99 min


I will never get over how movies set in the '90s are now considered period pieces.

What it's about

A group of young teenage friends navigate adolescence in Manila in the 1990s.

The take

Unlike in other films that only seem to evoke a previous era to make a target demographic feel warm and fuzzy inside, there's something vaguely artificial about Death of Nintendo's air of nostalgia—which is exactly what helps it tell its story. There isn't anything particularly novel about this movie's plot or characters, but Raya Martin's direction has us consider various themes between all the stuff you'd expect to see in a young adult movie. In moments of quiet unease that seem to punctuate every other sequence, we're drawn towards the absence of father figures, the inability of the women to get through to their sons (already embedded in patriarchal customs), and the idea that one's childhood in a Catholic country seems to be marked by physical pain. Beyond the film's feathery lighting and colorful production design, there's a surprising amount to think about.

What stands out

Though the boys at the center of the film are the characters who drive all the action forward, it's arguably the young girl, Mimaw (played by the incredible Kim Chloe Oquendo) who arguably emerges as the story's true protagonist. It may seem like she doesn't have as much control over things as the boys, but Martin and screenwriter screenwriter Valerie Castillo Martinez characterize her as someone who's beginning to learn the hardest truth about girlhood. That is, she's being forced to grow up faster than the rest, because the world is more unkind to and more demanding of girls. That her story happens almost in the background feels just right for what the film is trying to say.


Looks like an interesting movie.
I look forward to watching this.
I love stories that are complicated and in depth.
Stories that take thoughtful consideration..

Iido understand I will need to be patient until my schedule opens up. And Trust that my schedule will slow down in a bit.

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