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Friday, June 19, 2009


Today, we celebrate the 148th birth anniversary of our national hero, Dr. Jose P. Rizal.

Excerpt from Manila Bulletin Today/ Editorial---
His works impressed upon the colonial masters the inevitable operation of historical lessons. “No rule by one country over another lasts forever,” he declared in his essay “The Philippines A Century Hence.” His Noli Me Tangere awakened his countrymen from their lethargy that if they did nothing against their oppression, they would remain slaves forever. His El Filibusterismo warned the colonial masters that the Filipino people would violently separate their country from Spain if nothing was done to redress the people’s sufferings. His La Liga Filipina suggested the means to avoid such violent separation. The colonial masters were deaf to his warnings. The rest is history.

June 19, 1861, is a great day that the Filipino people should proudly celebrate. This date represents the first pulse of a great life, the dawn of a grand era, and the first spark that lighted freedom for the downtrodden Filipinos.

Our observance of Dr. Jose P. Rizal’s 148th Birth Anniversary demonstrates our respect and admiration for him as well as our awareness of the lessons he bequeathed to us. A people who honor and remember their heroes are a people who would never consent to be enslaved by others.
(Source- Manila Bulletin)

Jose Rizal's Noli Me Tangere was adapted to the big screen with National Artist for Film Gerardo 'Gerry' de Leon at the helm. The cast includes, among others, Eduardo 'Eddie' Del Mar as Crisostomo Ibarra, Edita Vital as Maria Clara, Oscar Keesee as Father Damaso, Johnny Monteiro as Father Salvi, Lina Carino as Sisa and Leopoldo Salcedo as Elias. In the supporting roles were Teody Belarmino, Ruben Rustia, Robet Arevalo, Jose Garcia, Lito Anzures, Max Alvarado, Andres Centenera, Ramon D' Salva, etc.

The movie won the year's FAMAS Best Picture and Director.

Literary Song-Movie Magazine/ 1961

(click images to enlarge)


Anonymous said...

This was a marvelous feature film adaptation of our National Hero's first novel. Sadly, it was not yet converted into digital form for new generations of Filipinos to watch.

I am going to ask several questions:

1. May I know who portrayed Basilio and Crispin in this film?

2. What was the exact date of this film's release?

3. Where was this movie first released? (most 1950s-1960s movie posters in the Philippines specified a movie theater like Life or Dalisay)

Anonymous said...

More interesting facts about GDL's Noli Me Tangere:

1. First locally-made film to be shown on an English-language theater (Galaxy, located on Rizal Avenue)
2. Largest box-office revenue at the time of film's showing: P100,000 in its first week
3. The project was conceptualized by Eddie del Mar (who portrayed Jose Rizal in a 1956 biopic about the National Hero and later portrayed Andres Bonifacio in a 1963 biopic; italics mine)
4. One of the first Filipino films to star a beauty queen (Edita Vital, Miss International 1960, portrayed Maria Clara)

Source: June 19, 2005 issue of Philippine Daily Inquirer (pages A2-1 and A2-2); you can find it on Google News Archives. Just search "noli me tangere 1961" and look for the article called "The untouchable Noli Me Tangere."

Anonymous said...

1. Edita Vital is the Philippines' representative to the 1960 Miss International beauty pageant but not the winner. She was placed as a semifinalist.
2. English-language theater in my previous comment means "a theater generally reserved for foreign [i.e. American] films."
3. Largest box-office revenue at the time of film's first week of showing: P100,000 (in 1961 money)

Anonymous said...

Mark Kelvin,

Eddie Ilagan portrayed as Basilio
and Mario Sibal as Crispin..


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