The Railway Man and the Philippine Experience

 

 

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Written by

Jude Bautista

“My husband isn’t coping. War leaves a mark. He’s a wonderful man. I want him back,” said Pattie (Nicole Kidman). She was describing the mental state of Eric (Colin Firth) after he tried to stab a debt collector in his home. It was a whirlwind romance for Pattie and Eric. She fell for his passion for trains, which they both shared. After the wedding, it didn’t take long for her to realize something was terribly wrong.

Jeremy Irvine (Young Eric Lomax) was a radio operator in the British forces. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Jeremy Irvine (Young Eric Lomax) was a radio operator in the British forces. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

The story is based on an autobiography of the same title written by Eric Lomax as part of the British Regiment in Singapore. When the Japanese captured the Commonwealth territory in 1942, Lomax and other engineers were brought north. They were forced to help plan the very ambitious Siam-Burma railway the Japanese had intended to construct connecting Southeast Asia to China.

from left: RWM Sponsorship Officer Maribelle Aure, RWM Dir Sponsorships & Partnerships Anna Chua, RWM Mgr Sponsorships & Partnerships Brian Villanueva and RWM F&B Mgr Arman Dela Paz. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: RWM Sponsorship Officer Maribelle Aure, RWM Dir Sponsorships & Partnerships Anna Chua, RWM Mgr Sponsorships & Partnerships Brian Villanueva and RWM F&B Mgr Arman Dela Paz. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

Starting September 24, 2014 the historical epic THE RAILWAY MAN is exclusively shown in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall. Lead stars include Colin Firth, Nicole Kidman Stellan Skarsgaard, Jeremy Irvine and Hiroyuki Sanada.

Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Slave labor was used to build the Siam Burma Railroad. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Slave labor was used to build the Siam Burma Railroad. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

The reason the scale of the Siam-Burma railroad had never been done before was the incredible logistical challenges. “An army of slaves” was necessary to complete the monumental task, cutting through mountains and difficult terrains through jungle and swamp. The Japanese had to be brutal and cruel beyond belief to complete the task. This was the reality faced by a young Eric Lomax and his comrades.

Nicole Kidman (Pattie). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Nicole Kidman (Pattie). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

The film jumps from the early 1980’s when Pattie and Eric met and fell in love to his memories of the war. Eric Lomax was also made consultant to the film but passed away before it was completed. The film is a touching example of how forgiveness and reconciliation is possible in spite of the terrible atrocities of war. Nicole Kidman as Pattie is the one person who inspired Eric in dealing with his demons.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

from left: Stellan Skarsgaard (Finlay) & Colin Firth (Eric Lomax). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

from left: Stellan Skarsgaard (Finlay) & Colin Firth (Eric Lomax). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Stellan Skarsgaard is the older Finlay who enlightens Pattie of Eric’s condition. They were in the same unit together and he personally witnessed the ingenuity and courage that Eric displayed during those horrific times. Young Eric Lomax is played by Jeremy Irvine who became known for playing Albert Naracott in WAR HORSE directed by Steven Spielberg. He can also be seen in thriller THE REACH with Michael Douglas. In 2015 Irvine is in THE WORLD MADE STRAIGHT a civil war piece with Noah Wiley and Haley Joel Osment.

Jeremy Irvine (Young Finlay). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Jeremy Irvine (Young Finlay). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) relives his incarceration. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) relives his incarceration. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

MARKOVA: COMFORT GAY / SUNDALONG KANIN

Throughout RAILWAY MAN, Finlay was talking about an unspeakable torture that Eric had gone through alone apart from the unit. This became a central element that kept on repeating itself. Naturally as the film progresses there was a deliberate plan to keep this secret until the denouement or even the climax to heighten the suspense.

Eric Quizon played the young Markova.

Eric Quizon played the young Markova.

Here in the Philippines as viewers there were a number of tortures or even atrocities that were going through our mind. Our history is similar in a sense where, our country was also invaded and ruled over by the Japanese forces during World War II.

Dolphy was both lead actor and producer in MARKOVA COMFORT GAY.

Dolphy was both lead actor and producer in MARKOVA COMFORT GAY. 

DOLPHY made of chocolate prepared by Marriot Chocolatier Chef Christopher Balane. RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

DOLPHY made of chocolate prepared by Marriot Chocolatier Chef Christopher Balane. RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

One of the landmark films about atrocities committed during that era was MARKOVA: COMFORT GAY (2000). It starred the most known and critically acclaimed Filipino actor comedian: Dolphy. His real life sons Epi and Eric Quizon played younger versions of his character. It was also similarly based on a real person; Walter Dempster Jr. aka Walterina Markova. Senator Loren Legarda played herself as a reporter interviewing Markova. The film is about a group of homosexual performers being used as ‘comfort gays’. Where Japanese soldiers would line up to rape them, which lasted for several years. It was a landmark film in a sense that it dealt with the issue of comfort women, which really happened at the time, and the fact it was gay men who were also being raped. Most recently the theme of comfort women was again dealt with in the Cinemalaya film SUNDALONG KANIN (2014).

Eric Quizon played the young Markova.

Eric Quizon played the young Markova.

Unspeakable Atrocity

SO in our minds we were gearing up for the possibility that it was THIS unspeakable atrocity that Eric Lomax endured, in the case of RAILWAY MAN. Especially since he specifically could not talk about the torture with his wife. Needless to say, it was another kind of torture that viewers would have to discover through the course of the film.

Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

The theme of a homosexual abuse/rape however neatly fit every piece of the puzzle. You wouldn’t expect Eric Lomax to openly discuss it given his extremely conservative Scottish upbringing. There was also a special relationship that developed between Eric and Kempetai agent Takashi Nagase played by Japanese star Hiroyuki Sanada. SO that would have added another dimension TO that relationship. Sometimes what is NOT explicitly said in a book or film becomes more interesting food for thought.

from left: Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase) THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

from left: Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase) THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

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HOLA! Editor in Chief Jose Mari Ugarte. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

HOLA! Editor in Chief Jose Mari Ugarte. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase) and Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

from left: Hiroyuki Sanada (Takeshi Nagase) and Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

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Colin Firth (Eric Lomax). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. 

PBA Courtside Reporter Rizza Diaz and long time boy friend Rex Bacud. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

PBA Courtside Reporter Rizza Diaz and long time boy friend Rex Bacud. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

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RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

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DOLPHY made of chocolate prepared by Marriot Chocolatier Chef Christopher Balane. RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

DOLPHY made of chocolate prepared by Marriot Chocolatier Chef Christopher Balane. RWM Chocolate fest will run from September 15-30, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) on Bridge in Burma. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) on Bridge in Burma. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Morgan Say & Janeena Chan. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

Morgan Say & Janeena Chan. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista 

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Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

from left: Julie Mainit and Glaiza Lee. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: Julie Mainit and Glaiza Lee. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014. Photo by Jude Bautista 

Nicole Kidman (Pattie). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Nicole Kidman (Pattie). THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

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Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

Colin Firth (Eric Lomax) & Nicole Kidman (Pattie), their love motivates him to deal with post war trauma experienced in WWII. THE RAILWAY MAN can be seen in Megaworld Lifestyle Malls such as Resort’s World Manila, Eastwood Malls, and Lucky Chinatown Mall starting September 24, 2014.

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