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Saturday, August 17, 2013


"Rodora" (1956)
Sampaguita Pictures
Release Date August 7-19, 1956/ Dalisay
Story Mars Ravelo
Serialized in Pilipino Komiks
Direction Mar S. Torres
Cast Paraluman, Van de Leon, Amalia Fuentes, Juancho Gutierrez, Cesar Reyes, Chichay, Justina David, Ven Medina, Martin Marfil, Romeo Vasquez/ Introducing Meldy Corrales

Based from the novel by Mars Ravelo, Rodora tells of the sad plights of a mother and a daughter separated by fate; the mother who has no memory of a child she bore and the child (a daughter) who hopes of finding her long lost mother.
Clara (played by screen legend Paraluman), a mother of two (a boy and a girl), is left for dead dumped in an isolated river bank by her jealous husband, Don Gustavo (Van de Leon) after she was brutally beaten
(see the first film clip below).
Courtesy of Sampaguita Pictures

A farmer, Damian (Ven Medina) finds her, takes her home and treats her injuries. When Clara wakes up, she can’t remember anything--- a victim of amnesia. She assumes new identity, falls in love with Damian, marries him and bears a child, Rodora.

In a sudden turn of events, Clara regains her old self, goes hysterical and runs away. Damian, in pursuit, is killed in the process when he is run over by the speeding train. Clara comes home to her old house surprising Gustavo. Clara is herself shocked when told the she is away for a year and she can’t explain nor remember what transpired in those months she is absent. Clara begs to stay and Gustavo, still mean and harsh to Clara decides not to take her in, but change his mind when Clara warns of legal actions against him on the custody of the children. She is treated by Gustavo more of a servant and the children are made to believe that their mother is long dead.

Years passed, the grown-up Rodora (Amalia Fuentes), in the care of her drunkard grandfather, Mang Adiong (Martin Marfil), decides to go to the city in search for her mother. Gustavo now dead and the two grown-up kids are making life hard on their mother and Clara believes that time will heal all wounds and her two children will soon come to realize their mistakes.
Rodora ends up working in Clara’s household (in all places). Celso (Juancho Gutierez), Rodora’s boyfriend, learns from Don Gustavo and Clara’s former servant (Chichay) who happens to be Celso’s guardian that the wedding photo and the diary of Don Gustavo she stole, is the same woman he saw in the framed photo hanging in the house of Rodora. At that moment, Clara’s son, who has a lustful desire on Rodora, which is supposed to be his half sister, tries to rape her. That exciting climax can be viewed in the second clip below---

Courtesy of Sampaguita Pictures

Pilipino Komiks/ 1955/Unang Labas
Nobela ni Mars Ravelo/
Guhit ni P.Z. Marcelo

click images to enlarge

---Ika-13 na labas---

click images to enlarge

Komiks materials---
From the private collection of Steve Santos


Rodolfo Samonte said...

I like your series of clips from movies. A chance to see once again my favorite actors from that golden age of Philippine movies. Paraluman, as her name implies, was exactly that in her younger days. One of Pinoy filmdom's loveliest and sexiest actress, here she shows what a great actress she was. Van de Leon, another great actor, and one of my favorite bad guys, also played the good guys, he was Tirong in Coching's Condenado and also the outlaw in Taga sa Bato. And a very young Mr. and Miss Number One. You can see glimpses of Amalia's talent, and Juancho still can't act. And an unfunny Chichay, all captured in those two clips. Keep 'em coming. I can't wait to see what's next.

TheCoolCanadian said...

Simon and Rod:

Me too. He-he.
I love Paraluman. Didn't realize she was that amazing.

I've always liked Mar S. Torres because even if the material he was working from is not well-written or extremely convoluted as in the case of Rodora, he always managed to make it quite interesting. He was too intuitive, something that reminds me of one of Hollywwod's biggie in the old days, Willy Wyler.

Basing upon Simon's synopsis of Mars Ravelo story, we can say for sure that coincidences in story writing suck big time, but we all know that reality is stranger than fiction. This sort of thingy have happened in real life (coincidence where people meet in an unusual way), but I still believe that FICTION should dare not write REALITY. That's why when we write fiction, even if it were based on a real story, we have to take some artistic license to bend some real facts to conform to what a good, creative story should look like.

The scene where Paraluman regained her memory without the aid of a psychiatrist injecting sodium amytal into her bloodstream, may turn people off, thinking that it is too easy and too impossible.

Unfortunately, this scene is extremely plausible. Re-living the same trauma that caused the problem in the first place – will usually cause the brain to regain its lost memory.

Gosh, I love PZ Marcelo's drawings here. It looks so Filipino, simple and clean, and so appealing.

Now, here's a special request: BUSABOS by Pablo S. Gomez (based upon PSG's life - but played by LOLITA RODRIGUEZ), and if possible, the opening scene of DONATA, again by Gomez.

Simon: are we becoming too demanding?


Video 48 said...

Hindi naman, JM, haha! Yes, I have a copy of "Busabos". Hope to feature it soon and more of these great Tagalog classic movies. And again,thank you for the support and also to Rod for all those invaluable insights and comments.

Downloader said...

Oh my! I just stumbled in this site and was very amazed on how you compiled all these stuff.

Now, I'll be an avid follower of this blog starting today.

Bookmarked and added to my Google Reader!


Anonymous said...


Si VAN DE LEON, din ba ang gumanap na TALAHIB, sa TAGA SA BATO, ni Coching? Talahib & Tirong are both outlaws sa nobelas ni Coching....


Fail Aftermaths said...

wow that is one nice film!


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