Review: HBO Asia Original, “On The Job: The Missing 8”

Intense action and drama shake up home viewing as the HBO Asia Original series from the Philippines, “On the Job, The Missing 8. I remember reviewing this film (On The Job) back in 2013 with a 5/5 score. This year, it is now a 6-part series, and the first Filipino HBO Asia Original now screening on HBO GO.

I got the chance to screen the series over the week. The first two episodes of the series were screened as a film at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival while the final four episodes are now in competition at this year’s Venice Film Festival. It is actually a smart move to convert it to a series given the attention span of audience tend to decline if the requirements didn’t met.

Directed by Erik Matti, On The Job stars Joel Torre, Gerald Anderson, and Dennis Trillo as prisoners ordered to do assassinations by powerful clientele. Joey Marquez and Piolo Pascual play the role of law enforcers with John Arcilla and Christopher De Leon acting as journalists attempting to uncover the truth to the killings. Michiko Yamamoto co-wrote the story


Inspired by real life event, Pinoys will surely remember the fate of media people disappeared before our eyes after being massacred on its way to cover the event. That was enough activism to get you glued to your seat but the series doesn’t stop there from giving all you need to look at how power rules the earth over faith.

Being familiar with Matti’s work (Honor thy Father, Seklusyon, Buy Bust), its not surprising that he’s championing a legit Pinoy culture leading for the world to fully understand its complication between what I call elements of his texture: poverty, power, prison. He knew his actors will shine in its own character merit, and true to its intention, Arcilla enraptured its caliber to portray Sisoy.

If music paved the way to influence our emotions towards the movie, On The Job: The Missing 8 successfully gave its best to ascend. So if you have HBO GO on your smart TV, make sure you have a powerful sound bar because the series is a Pinoy festival of movie scoring, if not a celebration of Filipino song. But beyond that, you are in for a treat with your 60’s and 70’s classic which over the period of pandemic time ridiculously grew on me.

Overall, On The Job: The Missing 8 is moody and relevant with what’s happening here in the Philippines, proliferation of fake news leading to influence an election, which is scarier than this fiction. It is the only film from Asia out of the 21 international films in Competition at this year’s Venezia 78.

Download the app at the App Store or Play Store on your device. Catch it in high-definition and commercial-free with SKY’s HBO GO plan for as low as P99 a month via SKYcable or P149 a month via any SKY Fiber subscription package. HBO GO can be accessed via Android TV, Apple TV, LG TV and Samsung Smart TV – and comes with AirPlay and Google Cast functionality. I’m telling you it is worth your time.

(Finished the entire series thanks to WarnerMedia screener)

Exit mobile version