The luminous Irene Santiago is an accomplished talent who is known for her artfulness at tackling diverse roles. She’s starring in “Providence” as Edith, a strong, self-reliant businesswoman who as she goes through life starts to develop a strained relationship with her daughter Rachel (Juli Tapken). It is screening at the Bare Bones International Film Fest, the perfect opportunity to witness Irene’s compelling appeal. Familial based movies such as “Providence” resonates deeply with me especially this month as my own mother lies in the ICU fighting to recover from a serious infection. Audiences will get a tear in their eyes when they take in Irene’s emotionally-driven performance that spans the journey of her character Edith from her 30s to her eventual affliction by stroke. Can this tragedy somehow rekindle the bonds between the estranged mother and daughter?
Kudos to Irene for immersing herself in one of the most demanding roles in an indie film which requires her to replicate the nuances of a stroke victim. Giving a most authentic portrayal of this debilitating condition which comes with its physically strenuous challenges, Irene should really be recognised with an industry award or two. It’s time the world unearth the jewels of independent cinema such as the gorgeous Irene Santiago who are pushing the envelope and capturing the essence of being a praiseworthy storyteller.