By Carissa Alcantara
"Bakas ni Yamashita" doesn't claim anything that may create confusion for Filipino moviegoers. Though inspired by the history and mystery of General Yamashita's gold treasure - the screenwriter Bill Velasco shared that he and his friend, the late filmmaker Arlyn dela Cruz - they were trying to make a movie together for four years.
Finally, the vision came to pass as the film is set to open in cinemas on Aug. 3 and will have its premiere night on Aug. 1 at Gateway Cinema 5, at 7 pm.
Bakas ni Yamashita centers around two cousins, Rick Bravo (Ahron Villena) and Tom Vince Cruz (Alfred Montero), who had been driven apart by a family tragedy. Rick is a security expert, while Tom is a professor of history in Pangasinan. When they finally get the chance to reunite, they are pulled into a dangerous hunt for the lost treasure gathered by Japanese Gen. Yamashita in World War II. It puts them in many challenging and exciting situations.
Apart from Villena and Montero in the cast, they are joined by Lou Veloso, Dexter Doria, Archi Adamos, Alan Paule, Joshua De Guzman, Toni Co, introducing Christa Jocson, and the special participation of Toshihiko Hara.
Angie Montero of White Eagle Film Production produced the said film. The film's director is Danni Ugali of Maid in London (2018) and Sugat sa Dugo, which was a short film, where the recent FAMAS best-supporting actress Janice de Belen won at the 2021 International Film Festival Manhattan (IFFM) best actress.
Ugali admires his late director-mentors--Maryo J. delos Reyes, Gil Portes, and dela Cruz. According to Ugali, he accepted the project since he finds it challenging to direct an action-adventure film.