In Focus: Love You To The Stars And Back

In LYTTSAB, two damaged people in journeys of their own accidentally meet along the way. Cancer-stricken Caloy wants to see his father one last time, while grieving Mica weirdly intends to be abducted by aliens atop Mt. Milagros. They bond from their feelings of hurt and anguish, eventually giving each other a reason to hope and live.

The journey itself is episodic and don’t build to anything significant. It would have been great if each encounter became some sort of conduit for them to realize life or love lessons, but that isn’t the case. If anything, they feel random and only serve to showcase JoshLia’s undeniable chemistry onscreen.

Moreover, it falls short of an attempt to critique the sense of entitlement and bullishness of Millennials. Both characters feel like a burden to very loving, understanding, selfless families that the audience is made to wonder the necessity of this trip and why the two don’t face their problems head-on. While we are made to sympathize with Caloy and Mica, the movie is shy of pointing out the selfish side of their actions. Not only does the much-needed realization come too late, but it relishes and indulges its leads after making some questionable decisions.

Having said these, it’s the performance of JoshLia that makes this worth watching. If anyone’s still doubting Joshua’s awards accolades, here’s the receipt. The persistent comparisons to a young JLC come from the younger actor’s sensitivity and ability to command such presence. Julia on the other hand is magnetic as she is emphatic. Not only that, but as she has proven here and in VKJ, she is a very fearless actress who is a step above her contemporaries.

LYTTSAB is feel-good fun and can be enjoyed for what it is. Albeit a bit angsty and contrived, it’s still surprisingly emotional and moving, buoyed by great lead performances. But from what I saw from JoshLia, they’re more than ready to tackle more substantive stories. Looking forward to them eventually having that “One More Chance” moment in their careers.

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