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Wednesday, June 9, 2021


"Adultery (Aida Macaraeg, Case No. 7892)" (1984)
Regal Films
Release Date June 1, 1984
Based on a legal story by Aida Sevilla Mendoza
Screenplay Jose Javier Reyes
Cinematography Conrado Baltazar
Editor Rogelio Salvador
Music Lutgardo Labad
Direction Lino Brocka
Cast Vilma Santos, Phillip Salvador/ Also Starring Deborah Sun, Alvin Enriquez and Mario Montenegro

Synopsis: Aida Macareg (Vilma Santos) works as a waitress in a restaurant and is the lone breadwinner of her family. She goes berserk every time she comes home to an uncooperative sister, a jobless brother with a kid and a pregnant wife, a moralistic mother and a bedridden father. Aida longs for release from her situation.

Her boyfriend, Carding (Phillip Salvador), still has to finish college. He acts as courier for Bombay (Rene Hawkins), a drug dealer, who is also into other illegal activities. He is made to promise to avoid Bombay, but the need for money keeps him going to him for odd jobs.

One day, Aida turns her back on her family and asks Carding for a live-in arrangement. They move into an apartment they could hardly afford. He now depends on Bombay as their means of livelihood. He is able to buy appliances for her — and Aida is spared from working. However, Carding is caught red-handed and is implicated in the shooting of a policeman.

Aida goes back to work as a waitress. She visits Carding regularly in prison. She discovers she is pregnant. They decide to get married. Carding is sentenced to fourteen years in prison. Aida realizes she cannot bear the child in her reduced circumstances. She opts for an abortion. Her sister, Miriam (Deborah Sun), tells Carding she had a miscarriage.

In the restaurant, Aida meets Tito Pangilinan (Mario Montenegro) who is smitten with love for her. He is frank. He has a wife and three grown-up kids. Aida does not tell him the truth.

Carding is transferred to Davao. He writes several letters to Aida but they are not answered. One day, he is told that his sentence has been commuted. After seven years, he is finally free and starts to look for Aida. He hears stories from his aunt but does not believe her. He is able to track down Miriam who, caught by surprise, gives him her address.

It is a shocked Aida who meets Carding. She says she is keeping house for Miriam’s lover and child but this only makes him doubt her. The pieces do not fit and Carding discovers that the boy, Alvin, is Aida’s son. The relationship with Tito Pangilinan is revealed and Carding thinks the son is his.

Upon the instigation of his aunt, Carding sues for adultery. Tito is disgusted with Aida’s lies and removes their son from her care. He wants him spared from the trauma of the forthcoming trial. The trial finally descends on the protagonists.

The marriage is dissected; the past recalled. The question of his paternity props up, but Aida states to Carding’s chagrin, that he is not his child. His baby was aborted due to her hardships. The lawyer tells Aida that the trial will be resolved in Carding’s favor. She is advised to beg him to drop his suit so that she might be reunited with her son. She visits him in his aunt’s house but he is cool to her request.

During the day of the verdict, Carding announces that he is withdrawing the lawsuit. Days later, Carding brings Alvin to his waiting mom. It seems he told Tito he would drop the case if he returns Alvin to her. Carding has now accepted the sad facts of the situation. He is leaving for Cebu where he will be in charge of some agricultural lands. Aida thanks him profusely.

(Source: Lino Brocka: The Artist and his Times)

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