Wednesday, February 25, 2015

WHAT DIVINA HAS DONE TO HER CAREER (The Weekly Nation, March 25, 1968)

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By Ricardo F. Lo

PROFESSIONALLY and personally, Divina Valencia has changed a lot.

     Before, all she needed to do was to shed her garments and people flocked the theater to see her films.  Her name spelled magic at the box office due to her curves and torrid clinches with her leading men.  And she generated frenzy among the members of the board of censors with her spicy pictures.

      Too much physical exposure however took a toll on her system and the gawking public started to rub its eyes in exhaustion.  Her career somewhat chilled.

     Divina acted fast just in time to prevent her career from sluicing down the drain.

     Setting aside her sexy image she went on to show to all and sundry that she's got more than just a seductive physique.

     Her outstanding portrayal in Sidra, in which for the first time Divina revealed her acting talent instead of her figure, restrengthened her hold on the public and catapulted her into the ranks of local filmdom's dramatic stalwarts.  As Sidra, Divina played an orphan left with nobody to turn to for support but a cruel uncle (played by Van de Leon) who later compelled her to dabble in a dubious life.

     To prove that her performance in Sidra was no fluke, Divina accepted more and more of the same demanding roles.  In the process, she displayed more than just thespic talent but also versatility.  She showed that she is also adept in dancing and singing (in Jala-Jala Jerk with Eddie Mesa), in tough acting ("I'm sorry," she apologized, "but I have lost count of the number of action films I have appeared in."  Conservative estimate:  30), in ribtickling (in Kwatang), and in tearjerking (in Bato Sa Bato).

     Recently Divina gave her acting reputation another shot in the arm with her spine-tingling interpretation of a rich heiress who doubted her sanity in her third try as a producer, Psycho-Maniac.

     Thus, the triumph that gave to Divina Valencia, the actress.

As A Person

     As a person,  Divina seemed to have also taken a turn for the better.  She has learned to control her temper and tantrums and to banter and gag with movie scribes.  Before she used to be an abrasive person who perplexed scribes and many people.  Once she was even reported to have mouthed snide remarks at the press and in the process inadvertently waged a one-woman war against reporters.  In the long run, she had to eat her words and apologize.

     Today Divina is a cool and composed woman who knows how to respect other people's opinions.  Her maverick ways are gone.

     She took the cursillo and the little course opened her eyes to her faults.

     Said she:  "The cursillo has broadened my perspective and brightened my outlook in life.  It has taught me two very important lessons in life:  patience and humility."

     Divina wants to enmeshed herself in work.  She has big dreams and she believes their fulfillment is possible only through hard work,  In involving herself in the thick of toil, Divina cliams she finds the consolation to her frustrations and the satisfaction she couldn't find somewhere else.

     Love, she said, is out of the question in the meantime.

     "I don't want to poke my finger into the romantic pie.  A serious romantic involvement at present would only hamper the realization of my many aspirations.  I'm even afraid love would only get me into a mess."  (However during the birthday bash thrown by Max Alvarado, Divina made quite a twosome throughout the night with Eddie Gutierrez, who is rumored to have finally reconciled with her after his adventurous spree.)

     She claims that she'd give marriage a thought when she reached 25, four years hence.  And she would say yes only to a man who is tall, dark, and not handsome.  "He must be about 10 years my senior because I expect him not only to be a husband but likewise a father to me."

     Her reason for not preferring goodlooking men?

     "I'm by nature very possessive.  Handsome guys are inclined to go astray, aren't they?"

Source:  The Weekly Nation, March 25, 1968

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