Effortless is the best word to describe Nadine Lustre’s performance in Mikhail Red’s horror fair Deleter. It’s her 15th film to date and her best by far.
With her natural flair, it’s highly anticipated for Lustre’s name to be called Best Actress in tomorrow night’s Metro Manila Film Festival Gabi ng Parangal.
The film, which also stars Louise delos Reyes, McCoy de Leon, and Jeffrey Hidalgo, follows the story of Lyra (Lustre), who works shifts at a shadowy online content moderation office where employees, known as deleters, are tasked with the process of filtering graphic uploads from reaching social media platforms.
The responsibility of censorship proves bearable for Lyra, whom her co-workers, as well as her boss Simon, observe as a cold person unfazed by the disturbing imagery she sees on a daily basis. What they do not know is that Lyra hides a deep trauma. Lyra’s attempt to erase and forget her past has forced her to do an apathetic face to the horrors of the world.
According to the director, casting is very crucial in achieving his vision for the film, which he describes as “very technical.”
“It’s really challenging because we’re dealing with monitors. By just changing the angles, maraming maaapektuhan even the compositing. She needs to react to a monitor that is not live. As an audience, you woud no longer think about the technicalities of the scenes but as craftsmen, it’s quite hard to pull off and it’s a learning experience for everyone,” Red told Manila Standard Entertainment.
The young yet multi-awarded director pointed out that Lustre’s acting is very technical and not every actor can easily execute the task of reacting to a monitor.
“Sometimes hindi nabibigyan ng praise yung technical aspect na ginawa ng isang actor sa isang scene, knowing their marker, their eyeline, it’s another form of acting. And I’m proud to have worked with this cast because it made my work easier,” he said.
“As an actor, doing a genre film is very technical. You have to know the eyelines, the beats, and the timing. It’s very difficult from a craft’s perspective. It helps that I was working with experienced and intelligent actors,” he went on.
Red’s vision was to create a techno horror but given their budget, they focused more on the internal monologue and mental struggle of the main character.
As a result, Red was able to craft a film with a relatively good and creative plot which slowly raises the tension culminating in a gripping yet scary climax. While Lustre shines in the film, Red is also the star of Deleter, noting it’s also his best.