I Love You, Beksman

Coming out is always difficult, no matter how straight you are, in Perci Intalan’s ridiculous comedy.

“I’m straight!”

Every genre is plagued somewhat by its own tropes. From the basics like horror and action to the most incomprehensible Kaufman-esque nonsense, effectively telling stories in those genres requires shortcuts and well-defined scenes to help the audience orient themselves within the fiction quicker. Queer cinema is no stranger to tropes, too, and coming-out dramas have some pretty obvious ones: strict fathers, incredulous friends, and a complete wardrobe and personality shift for our hero. Classic stuff.

But, posits the movie I Love You, Beksman, what if the roles were reversed?

Dali (Christian Bables) is a highly talented make-up artist and dress designer, who works (and lives) with a group of flamboyant gay men and women at a parlour. He meets Angel (Iana Bernandez) at a Miss Philippines event, and immediately falls for her. There’s only one problem: everyone assumes he’s gay. He decides to come out as straight, but finds with his career, fashion choices and general vibes, it’s going to be very difficult to convince anyone, let alone Angel, of his orientation.

I Love You, Beksman’s tongue-in-cheek sensibilities are what prevents it from ever getting too offensive (and it often comes close). It’s a comedy with somewhat broad humour, loaded with stereotypical gags that thankfully don’t come off offensive thanks to its queer production team and its admission that the hackneyed jokes are part of the bit. Obviously the idea that all straight men do is play basketball, fix cars and work out is absurd, and the film reminds of this by giving everyone in Angel’s family a stupid draw-on moustache.

I Love You, Beksman is a film that writes itself. It allows itself to be a tropey as possible, using the fact that it’s flipping those tropes on their head to get away with what is really some pretty hacky comedy. It’s been done since Seinfeld insisted there wasn’t anything wrong with that, and almost every comedy series has had a “tropes-but-about-something-else” bit somewhere in its lifetime. It was even done pretty well during the “come out as straight” cutaway gag in Dear Simon. I Love You, Beksman really toes the lines between tiresome and charming, never really landing in one particular spot.

While the writing can be a touch tired and the stereotypes about gay and straight people a little dated, the film is saved by a cast who are all delightful and a joy to watch. Bables plays Dali highly sympathetically (for the most part), and the back and forth between his two parental figures (Keempee de Leon and Katya Santos) is one of the film’s highlights. Iana Bernandez is always sweet, if occasionally flat, but that might be because everyone in the film is just so bright and loud that her subtle charisma gets buried a bit. Watching I Love You, Beksman is a little like watching your favourite sitcom that hasn’t aged particularly well but that you’ll always love.

In a cinema, with a highly energised crowd, it was a pleasure to watch – even during some of the cringier moments. I can’t imagine this would have been a film I’d have seen all the way through by myself. It was far too cheerful, colourful and all around loud for my miserable ass. High cinema this is not but in the end, if you like goofy, feel-good comedies with a manic edge, this will definitely make you smile.

Verdict: Silly, flamboyant and loud as all getup, I Love You Beksman is a film entirely supported by its cast, and is quite fun – if you’re with the right company and in the right mood.

Overall entertainment: 6/10
Violence: 1/10
Sex: Is Dali a virgin? Has he never even dated a woman before?
Campiness: 10/10
Subtlety: 0/10
Anakshiekels: Is this a typical pet name? I can’t find any information
Beksman: Also a confusing word – apparently a pun in the Philippines!


I Love You, Beksman (2022)
Also known as: Mahal Kita, Beksman

Director: Perci Intalan
Writer: Fatrick Tabada


Christian Bables – Dali
Iana Bernardez – Angel
Keempee de Leon – Jaime
Katya Santos – Gemma
Donna Cariaga – Analyn
Joanna Marie Katanyag – Marga
John Leinard Ramos – Romy
Mico Aytona – Boyet
Kyo Quijano – Freddie
Miguel Almendras – Diego
Gene Padilla – Jimmy
Gerard Acao – Gardo
Jerom Canlas – Bruno
Arvic Tan – Rob


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