FILM REVIEW: TRUDIS LIIT

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Plot: Ang Trudis Liit ay isang pelikulang Drama kung saan inaapi ang kaawa-awang si Trudis (Vilma Santos) ng kanyang madrasta (Bella Flores). Ito ay ipinalabas noong Pebrero 21, taong 1963. – Wikipedia (READ MORE)

The Reviews: “This is, of course, Vilma’s first film and it has all the elements of a melodrama – the good guys and one extremely bad woman (Bella Flores). This early, you can already tell that Vilma was to the acting profession born. (She won FAMAS Best Child Actress for this film). She doesn’t allow herself to be eclipsed by her veteran co-stars: Luis Gonzales and the Lolita Rodriguez. But with due respect to Vilma, even if she is the one who plays the title role here and is undeniably good in this Sampaguita Pictures box-office hit, the one who leaves a really lasting impression in the minds of most viewers is the character played by Connie Angeles – Oreng. After all, wasn’t it this girl who gets chewed up by a German Shepherd in the film?” – Butch Francisco, Newsflash.org Feb 2004 (READ MORE)

“Nakihalo lang ako doon sa mga nag-a-audition sa Trudis Liit [1963],” pagbabalik-tanaw ng aktres kung paano siya napasok sa showbiz at naging bida nga kaagad sa nabanggit niyang proyektong iyon. Hindi ako dapat talaga doon [sa audition na iyon]. Nakipila lang ako. Pagpila ko, tinatawag ako ng mommy ko na, ‘Hindi ka diyan! Sabi ko, ‘Andito na, e!’ Makulit na ako no’ng time na ‘yon! So, anyway, tinawag ako ni Doc Perez [of Sampaguita Pictures] at that time. Pinaarte ako. Nag-adlib-adlib pa ako. Nakuha naman ako. So, when I started, dalawa kaagad ang pelikula ko—Trudis Liit at Anak, Ang Iyong Ina [1963]. Ang naaalala ko lang tungkol sa maaga kong pagpasok sa pag-aartista, parang laro lang sa akin iyon. Parang naglalaro lang ako noon kaya hindi trabaho sa akin iyon, e. So, very-very memorable sa akin iyon. At saka no’ng Trudis Liit, every lunch, lagi akong may apple. Lagi akong may chicken. Every lunch talaga ‘yon. Parang… Siguro bata, so ibibigay nila ‘yong gano’ng ano sa ‘yo. Parang may prize ka, gano’n. So, memorable sa akin iyon.” – Vilma Santos (READ MORE)

“This is, of course, Vilma’s first film and it has all the elements of a melodrama – the good guys and one extremely bad woman (Bella Flores). This early, you can already tell that Vilma was to the acting profession born. (She won FAMAS Best Child Actress for this film). She doesn’t allow herself to be eclipsed by her veteran co-stars: Luis Gonzales and the Lolita Rodriguez. But with due respect to Vilma, even if she is the one who plays the title role here and is undeniably good in this Sampaguita Pictures boxoffice hit, the one who leaves a really lasting impression in the minds of most viewers is the character played by Connie Angeles – Oreng. After all, wasn’t it this girl who gets chewed up by a German Shepherd in the film?…” – Butch Francisco, Philippine Star November 3, 2005 (READ MORE)

“Throughout the years, the local film industry saw a continuous parade of child actors and actresses who eventually became adult performers to take their rightful places in the pantheon of movie stars. Hereunder are some of those phenomenal thespian-turned-stars:..Vilma Santos—She was the original Trudis Liit in 1963. Paired with Edgar Mortiz as a loveteam, they appeared in Our Love Affair, My Love at First Sight, Don’t Ever Say Goodbye and Young Love. But her filmography is filled with outstanding films directed by top-notch directors. Her unforgettable films included: Bata..Bata..Paano Ka Ginawa? (Chito Rono) which won for her a best actress award from Belgium directed by Chito Roño; Anak (Rory Quintos); Dekada 70 (Chito Rono) with Christopher de Leon; Pahiram ng Isang Umaga (Ishmael Bernal); Relasyon (Ishmael Bernal) which gave her a gand slam of all local best actress awards from FAP,FAMAS, Star; Broken Marriage (Ishmael Bernal); Hahamakin Lahat (Lino Brocka); Rubia Servios (Lino Brocka); Kapag Langit ang Humatol (Laurence Guillen); Pagputi ng Uwak, Pag-Itim ng Tagak (Celso Ad. Castillo); Burlesk Queen (Celso Ad. Castillo) and Sister Stella L. (Mike de Leon)…” – FAP (READ MORE)

“…Contravida Queen Bella Flores was featured in “Showbiz Central’s” Most Influential segment as she plays a big part in GMA Films’ new movie with Rhian Ramos and Aljur Abrenica, “My Kontrabida Girl.” It’s also a tribute to Bella as she’s celebrating her 60th anniversary in showbiz. The screen name Bella Flores was given to her by the late Sampaguita Pictures’ boss Dr. Jose Perez. “I was so glad when I was told it means beautiful flowers,” she said. Her real name is Remedios Dancel and she was born on Feb. 27, 1936, which means she turned 76 yesterday, Monday (Feb 27/2012). She was only 15 when she did her first villain role maltreating child star Tessie Agana in the blockbuster “Roberta.” She recounted that Vilma Santos auditioned with her for her first movie, “Trudis Liit,” in 1963. “Natakot siya at tumakbo dahil nakita niyang pinahirapan ko ‘yung ibang batang nag-audition,” she said. “Ngayon, governor na siya. Sina Roderick Paulate at Gina Alajar, sa’kin din nagsimula as child stars sa ‘Kaibigan Kong Sto. Nino’…” – Mario Bautista (READ MORE)

“Ang pelikula ni Ate Vi na Trudis Liit ay tandang tanda ng maraming Vilmanians. Nagdulot ito ng unang karangalan para kay Ate Vi at sa murang edad ng siyam. Sa mga Vilmanians ang maraming madramang eksena ni Vilma rito’y natanim sa ating alaala. Ang sabi nga ng isa sa ating Vilmanian na si Henry Llaneza, “the first movie I’ve seen in Black & White TV mula sa bintana ng kapitbahay ay ang “Trudis Liit” na napaiyak ang lahat ng nanonood dito nagsimula ang lahat…” ng kanyang pagiging isang Vilmanian. Katulad ni Henry, dito rin nagsimula ang aking paghanga sa star for all season. Galit na galit ako nuon kay Bella Flores dahil sa pang-aaping ginawa niya kay Trudis. Sa pagkapanalo ni Ate Vi ng FAMAS Best Child Actress sa pelikulang ito, sinundan pa ng Sampaguita Pictures ang tagumpay nito sa pamamagitan ng pelikulang Ging. Dito makikita ang malinaw na talento ni Ate Vi. Hindi lamang sa kanyang hindi pilit na pag-iyak kundi sa pagkanta rin. Dito rin sa pelikulang ito’y nakipagsabayan siya sa pagganap ni Olivia Cenizal at sa pang-aapi ni Carol Varga. Ang dekada ng sisenta ay patuloy na nagbigay ng maraming pelikula kay Ate Vi magmula sa pagiging isang batang artista hanggang sa isang teenager. Umabot ito sa unang karangalan niya bilang isang hindi na batang artista sa pamamagitan ng pagkanominado niya sa Best Supporting Actress muli sa FAMAS at ang kanyang pagkapanalo ng parehong titulo mula naman sa San Beda College…” – RV (READ MORE)

“…Vilma was talking about Trudis Liit, the ’60s Sampaguita tearjerker in which she played the title role, with Luis playing her father, now US-based Lolita Rodriguez her mother and Bella Flores as the kontrabida. Luis, whose real surname is Mercado, died of complications of pneumonia at 11:30 Thursday night, March 15, at the Makati Medical Center where he was confined for the last time (he had been in and out of the hospital). As in the case of movie greats, Luis’ age is confidential and maybe not even his wife Vina Concepcion, who belongs to the clan that owns Concepcion Industries, and their three children can be forced to reveal it. After Trudis Liit, Vilma would star with Luis years later when she was already a teenager, in Iginuhit ng Tadhana and in Pinagbuklod ng Langit, produced by Sampaguita Pictures, believed to have helped Ferdinand Marcos win when he ran for President and then for reelection. In both movies, Luis plays Marcos, with Gloria Romero as First Lady Imelda Marcos and Vilma as Imee Marcos (now Ilocos Norte Governor). In the second, Gina Alajar plays as Irene Marcos (Mrs. Greggy Araneta), Now-Sen. Bongbong Marcos plays himself in the first movie (it was Jonjie Aranda, ex-husband of Sen. Loren Legarda, who plays Bongbong in the second). “I shot Palimos ng Pagibig (a Viva drama, with Edu Manzano and Dina Bonnevie) at Luis’ house,” added Vilma. “I remember him as sobrang kalog, palabiro. Ang tawag namin kay Tito Luis palengke kasi nga Mercado ang real surname niya. I was nine years old then and he always reminded me to just enjoy everything. We were always shooting dramatic scenes at parati akong iyak nang iyak, but after every take, tawa na kami nang tawa because Tito Luis would start cracking jokes…” – RicoJr (READ MORE)

Advertisements

FILM REVIEW: IGINUHIT NG TADHANA


The Plot: Iginuhit ng Tadhana (Carved by Destiny) is a movie based on the life of Ferdinand Marcos prior to his ascendancy as President of the Philippines. The movie was chronological in setting, featuring Marcos as a young boy in his hometown, as a brilliant student, and up to the time that he was unjustly imprisoned as a suspect in the murder of the political rival of his father. The movie then moves up to his acquittal, his career as a young congressman and senator, and up to the time that he married Imelda Marcos. The movie was shown in Manila as additional campaign material for Marcos’ candidacy for the Presidential race, which he eventually won. The movie portrayed Marcos as a person who is more than just a politician. – Wikipilipinas

The Film: “…Marcos knew the power of the medium of film. Earlier on, Marcos produced a film biography using the most popular stars for his first presidential campaign. He ran against Macapagal who also came up with a film biography to boost his reelection bid. Marcos would also use another film Iginuhit ng Tadhana (Written by Destiny, 1965) to campaign for a second term. The two Marcos film bios would be the only successful political films—commercial and election wise—as other film biographies in the post-Marcos period by senatorial and presidential aspirants would prove dismal, unhelpful for election bids. The post-Marcos period liberalized the political and economic scene. It conventionalized and intensified the election of movie and sports stars, and even television news hosts to national politics. Television stations were sequestered by the government, the largest of which, however, was returned to its pre-martial law owners. ABS-CBN would become the leading television station until after 2000, allowing two of its news anchors to become senators…” – Rolando Tino (READ MORE)

“…In 1965, the Board of Censors suspended the movie exhibition of Iginuhit ng Tadhana (a movie biography of Presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos). Many believed and suspected that Malacanang had a hand in the board’s decision and such action was a wrong political maneuver and ploy that proved disastrous to the reelection bid of incumbent President Diosadado Macapagal. It practically ensured the Presidential electoral victory of Marcos…The suspension of the showing of a movie on the life of Senate President Ferdinand E. Marcos stirred yesterday a political storm and precipitated the resignation of the chairman of the Board of Censors for Motion Pictures. Officials of the board said that the board voted to suspend the exhibition of the movie, “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” (Destined by Fate) because its producer failed to submit it for preview by the board en banc or by the entire board. The film had been approved for showing by a subcommittee of four headed by Mrs. Rosalina I. Castro last August 24. The board said it interpreted the refusal of the movie company, the 777 Film Productions, to comply with its order as defiance of the Board. The order of the board also suspends the showing of the movie in eight provinces and cities— Camarines Norte, Batangas, Marawi City, Pampanga, Cotabato, Aklan, Masbate, and Sulu. The film has been showing in theaters in these places since Aug. 24, the date of the approval of the picture by the subcommittee of four. In the wake of the suspension of the showing of the film, columnist Jose L. Guevarra, chairman of the board of censors, tendered his resignation. Guevarra did not state his reason for resigning in his letter to President Macapagal, but sources close to him said that the resolution of suspension, which was adopted in his absence, had something to do with it…” – Isagani Yambot, Sept. 3, 1965 (READ MORE)

“…Isa sa paborito ko ay ang Iginuhit ng Tadhana,” ayon pa kay Conrado, “because that film helped President Marcos win the elections in 1965. If you remember, that film was banned by the Macapagal administration and the people naturally became curious. The movie was a big hit.” Iginuhit ng Tadhana was divided into three parts: Marcos as student, Marcos after school and Marcos in his early years in politics. Conrado directed the portion with the President as a young man, during the Nalundasan case, a crucial part in the President’s life. Before he began shooting, according to Conrado, he made his own research and first visited Batac where they shot an important scene…” – Conrado CondeJingle Extra Hot Movie Entertainment Magazine, April 27 1981 (READ MORE)

“This rarely seen, authorized biography of former President Ferdinand Marcos stars Luis Gonzalez, Gloria Romero, Vilma Santos, and Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. as himself. (The film starts with a flash of lighting as he is born on 9/11 in 1917.) ” – Vincent Nebrida (READ MORE)

“…In the 1960’s, Gloria Romero portrayed Imelda Marcos in “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” and “Pinagbuklod ng Langit.” In the 1970’s she starred in two memorable movies: Behn Cervantes’s vanished movie, “Sakada” (1976), and earlier, 1973’s “Lipad, Darna, Lipad,” the biggest movie of its time in which she played a “manananggal” to Vilma Santos’s super heroine. Up to now, she considers the last as one of her most unforgettable…” – Lito Zulueta (READ MORE)

“…And what many people probably didn’t know is that Bongbong played himself in Iginuhit ng Tadhana, produced by Sampaguita Pictures as a campaign pitch for Ferdinand when he first run for president in 1965, with Gloria Romero as Imelda, Luis Gonzales as Ferdinand, (now reelectionist Batangas Gov.) Vilma Santos as Imee and Gina Alajar as Irene (now Mrs. Greggy Araneta). A few years later, a sequel, titled Pinagbuklod ng Langit, was produced also by Sampaguita, directed by Eddie Garcia, with Gloria, Luis, Vilma and Gina reprising their roles and Jose “Jonjie” Aranda (first husband of Bongbong’s fellow Nacionalista, reelectionist Sen. Loren Legarda; their marriage was annulled in 1986) playing Bongbong….” – Ricardo F. Lo (READ MORE)

“…In hid book, Don Jose & The Early Philippine Cinema, Joe Quirino credits jose Nepomuceno pioneer in producing movies that not only entertained but also informed. Wrote Quirino: “His screen adaptation of Noli Me Tangere, Jose Rizal’s novel exposing the social cancer that festered during the Spanish occupation of the Philippines, captured the sardonic and satirical contents of the imflammatory noel.” Satire was a popular device through which producer aired their views on social issues. In 1929, a satirical movie called Patria Amore caught the ire of the local Spanish community who went to court to stop its exhibition. A counterpart incident took place in 1965 when the Liberal Party tried to stop the showing of Iginuhit ng Tadhana, the propagandistic movie of the life of Ferdinand Marcos. The same motion picture propelled Marcos to the presidency. Movies of social significance often face this dillemma on their way to the big screen. Because of their strong public statement, they invite uproar from concerned sectors, an experience that became almost a daily ordeal for the late director, Lino Brocka. In recent years and until his death in 1991, Brocka had been the prime mover of Tagalog movies of social significance. Some of his works that easily fall under this category are, in no particular orderL Orapronobis (about vigilantes and rebels in the countryside), Bayan Ko (on labor unrest), Gumapang Ka sa Lusak and Hahamakin Lahat (on political corruption), Maynila: Sa Mga Kuko ng Liwanag (on moral degradation and exploitation)…” – Nestor Cuartero, Panorama, dated June 13, 1993 (READ MORE)

“…The First Manila Film Festival was held for the first time in 1966. Reserved solely for Hollywood and foreign movies, first-run downtown theaters like Ideal, Odeon, State, Ever, Galaxy, Capitol, Lyric, among others were opened for exhibition to locally-produced or Tagalog movies. The filmfest was the brainchild of then Manila Mayor Antonio Villegas. The 10-day festival which coincided on the city’s foundation day (June 24) was a huge success participated in by big names in the industry…A total of 18 movies (14 new, 4 reissues) were exhibited during the 10-day festival. Iginuhit ng Tadhana, Portrait of the Artist as Filipino and Daigdig ng mga Api, all released in 1965, and Zamboanga, shown a month earlier, were allowed to participate…” – VIdeo48 (READ MORE)

RELATED READING:

Filmography: Kamay na Gumagapang (1974)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Basic Information: Direction:Tony Cayado; Story: Pablo S. Gomez; Screenplay: Mauro Bautista; Cast: Vilma Santos, Rosemarie Gil, Romeo Miranda, Alicia Alonzo, Dick Israel, Matimtiman Cruz, Tita De Villa, Jose De Villa, Venchito Galvez, Conrado Conde, Naty Mallares, Winnie Santos, Rey Tomenes, Elisa Robles, Louie Zapata; Original Music:Totoy Nuke; Cinematography: Felipe Santiago; Release Date:26 July 1974 (Philippines); Production Company:VP Pictures

Plot Description: No Available Data

Film Achievement: No Available Data

Film Review: “Pablo S. Gomez is one of the top komiks writers in the Philippines. He is also a movie scriptwriter and director. His most popular works include Kurdapya, Petrang Kabayo, among others…Among the prolific writers in the Philippines, Gomez created more than 1,000 komiks novels and stories. Some 300 of which were given film adaptations by movie studios like Sampaguita Pictures, Lea Productions, FPJ Productions, Seiko Films, Viva Films, and Regal Films…In the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, his list of works that became blockbuster movies were…Kampanerang Kuba (1973), Kamay na Gumagapang (1974)…” – Wikipilipinas (READ MORE)

“…My first big break as a kontrabida was given by Dr. Perez of Sampaguita Pictures in Kamay Na Gumagapang. In one of our press conferences, he told everyone “Watch out for this guy, Dick Israel, he’s going to be the next Eddie Garcia…” – Edwin P. Sallan (READ MORE)

“…Ang masterpiece ni Tony Cayado na Kamay Na Gumagapang (July 26, 1974) ay handog ng VP Pictures na pinangunahan nina Vi, Rosemarie Gil, Romeo Miranda, Alicia Alonzo, Dick Israel, Matimtiman Cruz, Tita de Villa, Venchito Galvez, Winnie Santos at Naty Mallares. Ito ay sa panulat ni Pablo S. Gomez at iskrip ni Mauro Bautista. “Beware: Kamay Na Gumagapang is creeping at your back!…” – Alfonso Valencia (READ MORE)

Filmography: Ang Hiwaga Ni Maria Cinderella (1973)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Basic Information: Directed: Emmanuel H. Borlaza; Cast: Vilma Santos, Jay Ilagan, Blanca Gomez, Geena Zablan, Janet Clemente, Ike Lozada, German Moreno, Jannie Frias, Jingle, Winnie Santos, Maricel, Jonjon Salvador, Mary Rose Junco, Jerry Jackson, Dondon Nakar, Florence Aguilar, Romeo Miranda, Max Alvarado, Matimtiman Cruz, Joseph Sytangco, Elizabeth Vaughn; Original Music: Tito Arevalo; Cinematography: Tommy Marcelino

Plot Description:   Filipino version of Cinderella.

Film Achievement:   “…Jay Ilagan and Vilma Santos did twelve films with commercial success except for one, their most critically acclaimed film, Sister Stella L. Total Number of films with Vilma Santos – 12 (Inspiration, Ang Konduktora, Tsismosang Tindera, Ang Hiwaga ni Mariang Cinderella, Tatlong Mukha ni Rosa Vilma, Paano Ba Ang Mangarap, Sister Stella L, Coed, Leron Leron Sinta, Ito Ang Pilipino, Remembrance, Karugtong Ng Kahapon)…” – RV (READ MORE)

“…Borlaza gave Vilma Santos her very first best actress, winning the 1972 FAMAS for via Dama De Noche. He is also credited in narrowing the popularity gap between her and the musical era’s darling of the 70s, Nora Aunor. Total Number of Films in our list of VSR’s Top 50 films = 4 (#10 Lipad Darna Lipad 1973, #32 Dyesebel at ang Mahiwagang Kabibe 1973, #48 Darna and the Giants 1973, #49 Dama De Noche 1972)…” – RV (READ MORE)

Film Review: “……Besides teaming up with Edgar Mortiz during her teen years, Vilma Santos also starred and appeared in many movies opposite other leading men…Jay Ilagan — Inspiration (1972), Ang Konduktora (1972), Tatlong Mukha ni Rosa Vilma (1972), Tsismosang Tindera (1973), Ang Hiwaga ni Maria Cinderella (1973)…” – Simon Santos (READ MORE)

“…His films lack the arthouse style and social relevance that critics loves most in a Brocka or Bernal films but who cares about the critics when the paying public loves them. And the producers demand his service, from Doc Perez of Sampaguita Pictures, Atty. Esperidion Laxa of Tagalog Ilang Ilang Productions and later on, Vic Del Rosario of Viva Films and Lily Monteverde of Regal Films. Clearly, his films exists with one purpose, to entertain the masses not to depress or remind them with the country’s sad fate of economy or the below poverty line lives of many. The success of the Vilma-Borlaza films gave Vilma Santos versatility and preparation to a more serious acting career. It also narrowed the popularity gap between her and the musical era’s darling of the 70s, Nora Aunor. These are perhaps, the most significant contributions of Emmanuel Borlaza to Vilma’s career. Vilma who was considered only second to Nora couldn’t matched her singing talent and so, Borlaza countered this lack of singing with films that showcased Vilma’s acting versatility…” – RV (READ MORE)

Filmography: Dama De Noche (1972)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Basic Information: Directed, story: Emmanuel H. Borlaza; Cast: Vilma Santos, Edgar Mortiz, Fred Montilla, Lillian Laing, Matimtiman Cruz, Ruben Tizon, Jovie Barse, Priscilla Ramirez, Danilo Jurado, Cloyd Robinson; Screenplay: Nestor Torre

Plot Description: A dual role – demented lead. She plays the role of twin sisters, one of whom is a lunatic.

Film Achievement: 1972 FAMAS Best Actress; 1972 Quezon City Film Festival Nomination Best Actress – Vilma Santos

Film Review: “…This being Vilma Santos’ 50th year in show business (she started as a child star in 1963 with the dramatic tearjerker, “Trudis Liit”), her loyal fans are perfervidly recalling the highlights of her “golden” acting career…The year 1972 turned out to be a most productive season for Vilma, who started to do different and better movies that required her to go beyond teen-fave cuteness. In “Inspiration,” she was partnered with Jay Ilagan, and they came up with memorably endearing portrayals. In “Takbo, Vilma, Dali,” she was dynamic instead of soporifically sweet. In “Ang Konduktora,” she revealed her penchant for comedy. And, in “Dama de Noche,” where she played a psychologically troubled young woman, she won her first big acting award. This was a major milestone and triumph for the young actress, because heretofore most of the acting honors in film competitions went to Nora…What’s up next for everybody’s Ate Vi? Higher political office, quite logically and obviously. But, we hope against hope that, every couple of years or so, she will continue to gift us with another memorable screen portrayal, to further enhance her already exceptional filmography. She’s simply too good a thespian to surrender completely to politics…” – Nestor U. Torre, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 03 August 2012 (READ MORE)

A very young Vilma Santos plays twins—a goody-two shoes and a manic meanie. They fall for the same guy—if I’m not mistaken, a slim Edgar Mortiz. The good twin sings pretty songs, looks morose most of the time, and is often helpless; the bad twin is active, take-charge, and flashes her eyes at the camera a lot. In the end she burns the house down; unfortunately she traps herself in it. Good Vi and Bot escape, and watch the house go down in flames while holding on to each other beside a dama de noche shrub (or at least I assume it’s one). And yes, there is a theme song that goes, “Daaaama de noche… daaaaaaaaamaaaaa de nocheeeeee….” (P.S. Vilma Santos won best Actress in the 1972 Famas Awards for her role/s in the movie.) – Joel McVie, the McVie

Dama de Noche is showing in three theaters— Remar, Delta and Sampaguita. It is, Vilma was quoted as saying, her dream role fulfilled. The very professional Vilma has come out with the resolution than henceforth she will demand to see the script and also see that the script is demanding— or she’ll say nix. Well, Dama de Noche is exactly just that: demanding. In it she delineates the twin-sister roles of sweet Armida and deranged Rosanna. Vilma sobs and screams, giggles, and crazy-dances, claws and clowns, sobs again and screams some more. But she does more than all these things. She acts. In the Filipino movieworld where crying is synonymous with acting, that certainly is being ahead of one’s kind.

Vilma as Armida is drab and dry, almost a movie prop. It is in the portrayal of Rosanna that Vilma would tear one’s heart away. The many close-ups so effectively used throughout the movie show the unglamorous Vilma: her frowns, her lip-twitching, her uninhibited and stifled sobs. But Vilma is less successful with the shifty look that is the distinctive trait of the deranged. She compensates for this in the ‘betrayal’ scene when Rosanna suspects that Leo, Armida and the psychiatrist (Fred Montilla) all conspired to imprison her in the hospital. Another outstanding feat is the subdued scene where Rosanna learns that Leo has gone to the Lerma villa to meet Armida.

The vivacious Rosanna is just as winsomely pathetic. Watching her is just like seeing a bosom friend trying to pretend she’s happy when both of you know she’s not only in this case, Rosanna is truly happy. Her non-knowledge of her plight is what is particularly heart-curling. Dama de Noche is Tagalog Ilang-Ilang Production’s entry in the QC filmfest which started on Oct.15. It is a very simple story, almost run-of-the-mill, but Nestor Torre, Jr. who wrote the screenplay saved it with his meaningful and amusing lines. However, the movie is occasionally dragging with the Filipino moviemania for spoonfed sequences. – Times Jornal October 24, 1972 (READ MORE)

“…I didn’t expect to win, although marami ang nagsasabi sa akin na malaki ang pag-asa ko. Ako naman, I don’t believe anything unless talagang nangyayari. Kasi noon, I expected to win, sa film festival din sa Quezon City, but somebody else did. I was very disappointed. Noong awards night nga, I wasn’t convinced I would win hanggang hindi ko pa hawak ‘yong trophy…” – Ricardo F. Lo, Expressweek Magazine January 19, 1978 (READ MORE)

“…We wrote quite a number of scripts for Vilma, including the screenplay for “Dama de Noche,” which turned out to be the first film that gave her an acting award. “This was a big deal for Vi because she was very frustrated at the time due to the fact that she was always losing to Nora in acting derbies in the ’70s. Thus, when she won her Famas trophy, she felt vindicated. It was when “Dama de Noche” was being shot that we had an instructive experience with Vilma. She played a mentally disturbed girl in the story, and there was one scene in which she was supposed to dance her way through a forest. Somebody had interpreted this to mean that the dance would be choreographed number, so a ballet-like dance costume had been made for Vilma! When we got to the movie set that day, Vilma showed us her dance costume, and we were shocked. We explained that the “dance” was supposed to be spontaneous, thus unchoreographed and uncostumed! After our explanation, Vilma returned the costume to the production people, and simply “danced” the scene at her mentally challenged character would, spontaneously. This experience told us that, despite her young age then, Vilma was determined to do her job well, and once she understood how a scene should be done she would insist on doing it the right way, no matter if she ruffled the feelings of some people in the production…” – Nestor U. Torre, Philippine Daily Inquirer, June 6, 2003 (READ MORE)

“…And God Smiled at Me vs. Dama De Noche, 1972 – a German Moreno- directed escapist fare vs. a dual-role directed flick by Emmanuel Borlaza at the QC FF. Nora’s first best actress award, Vilma’s first of many defeats vs. La Aunor in the acting field. Nora’s role was simple, she was playing herself. Vilma’s dual role had degree of difficulty. She had a breakdown scene, with the camera showing a close up of Vilma crying and laughing all at once – the “luka-luka role.” Many fans and critics disagreed with the verdict. Come 1973 FAMAS awards, Vilma had her vengeance. She won over Nora, but she shared the award with Boots Anson-Roa. It’s not a complete victory…” – Anonymous (READ MORE)

“…Sa Amerika at iba pang bansa, palasak ang mga organized schools of acting na doon ay p’wedeng mag-enrol ang isang nag-aambisyong mag-artista at nang ma-refine niya o lalong mapagbuti ng anumang likas niyang kakayahan sa pag-arte. Isa sa mga pinakatanyag nilang acting techniques ay iyong tinatawag na Method Acting. Ang taguriang The Method ay pinaiklu mula orihinal na Stanislovsky Method, sinulan noong 1909 bg Rusong aktor-direktor na si Konstantin Stanislavsky. Si Stanislavsky ay mula sa Moscow Art Theatre at ang kanyang pamosong pamamaraan sa pag-arte ay pinakilala naman sa Estados Unidos ng kanyang mga disipulo. Ang Method Acting ay isang well-rounded system of training na binibigyang-pansin hindi lamang ang pag-arte kundi pati na ang wastong pagtindig, paglakad, at paggamit ng boses. Ang pinakabantog na paaralan ng Method Acting ay ang Actor’s Studio ni Lee Strasberg sa Nuweba York…Ang pinakatanyag niyang estudyante ay sina Marlon Brando, Julie Harris, Patricia Neal at ang yumaong James Dean…Sa pelikulang Pilipinoay maaaring hatiin ang mga uri ng pag-arte sa dalawang pangkat. Ang una’y kinabibilangan nina Lolita Rodriguez at Nora Aunor. Ang pangalawa’y binubuo nina Charito Solis at Vilma Santos. Ang istilo ng acting nina Lolita ay banayad, mahinahon, pigil. Ang nadarama’y mababasa sa mga mata at sa bahagyang kiling ng ulo o sa kilos ng katawan. Kung ihahambing dito ang klase ng arte nina Charito, ay iyon namang matatawag na obvious, halos natatawag ng pansin. Kung nagagalit ay talagang hysterical na, nangininig ang mga labi, nandidilat ang mga mataat nagtutumili sa pagsasalita (ang buong katawa’y nangangatal). Natatandaan marahil ninyo si Charito doon sa eksena sa “Araw-Araw, Gabi-Gabi” (nanalo siya rito ng best actress sa Manila Filmfest) na muli silang nagkasama-sama ng kanyang mga napahiwalay na kapatid. Napaluhod pa siya at napahagulgol sa matinding tuwa. (Pero tila nagbago na si Ms. Solis sa ganitong estilo mula nang mahawakan siya ni Brocka “Larawan”). …Natatandaan din siguro ninyo si Vilma Santos sa “Dama De Noche” (nanalo siya rito ng best actress sa Famas), doon sa eksenang dinala siya sa pagamutan ng mga baliw at nang matuklasan niya ito’y nagsisigaw siya, nanlalaki pati mga butas ng ilong at halos lumuwa ang mata sa galit. Sa malas naman ay ito ang higit na naiibigang istilo sa pagarte ng ating publiko. Kung bigay-tudo at eksaherado ay mas maganda para sa kanila. Di ba’t maging sa buntalan ay mas nagugustuhan nila yung matatagal na eksena ng bakbakang walang patlang ang palitan ng mga suntok at sipa?…” – Mario E. Bautista, Jingle Extra Hot Magazine, 11 February 1980 (READ MORE)

“…Matunog ang bulungan na maaaring maglaban daw sina Vi at Guy sa Best Dramatic Actress category sa Q.C. Filmfest. Si Guy sa kanyang “And God Smiled At Me” at si Vi sa “Dama de Noche.” Sabagay, tops si Vi basta’t drama. Pero isa na ako sa nagsasabing si Guy ay hindi patatalbog sa kanya sa linyang ito. Nakita ko na itong gumagawa ng drama scene (And God) at tutoo pa namang susmaryosep! Ang galing! But then, talagang heavy ang role ni Vi sa drama. Dual pa which makes it doubly mahirap. Magkapatid na ang isaý luka-luka…” – Cleo Cruz, Superstar Magazine, 16 October 1972

RELATED READING:

Filmography: Iginuhit ng Tadhana (1965)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Basic Information: Direction: Mar S. Torres, Jose De Villa, Conrado Conde; Screenplay: Luciano B. Carlos, Emmanuel H. Borlaza; Additional Screenplay: Chito B. Tapawan; Cast: Luis Gonzales, Gloria Romero, Rosa Mia, Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. (as himself), Vilma Santos (as Imee), Chona (as Irene), Tony Cayado, Ven Medina, Venchito Galvez, Jose Morelos, Marcela Garcia, Lourdes Yumul, Matimtiman Cruz, Renato Del Prado, Pablo Raymundo, Conrado Conde, Jose De Villa, Nenita Navarro, Sabas San Juan, Jaime Javier, Willlie Dado, Jimmy Evangelista, Mariano Honrado, Nellie Madrigal, Rey Tomenes, Emmanuel Borlaza, Marcelino Navarro, Naty Mallares, Aring Bautista, Ding Tuazon, Henry Stevens, Aurora Ilagan, Florencio Tarnate, Abner Villar, Pio Torres, Tita De Villa, Joseph Strait, Remedios Marcos, Vic Pacia, Teddy Valdemor, Joe Salazar, Jose Villafranca; Music: Restie Umali; Directors of Photography: Higino J. Fallorina, Steve Perez, Amaury Agra; President and Executive Producer: Alejandro S. Galang; Production Co.: 777 Films Productions (Philippines); Film Poster: Video 48

Plot Description: Iginuhit ng Tadhana (Carved by Destiny) is a movie based on the life of Ferdinand Marcos prior to his ascendancy as President of the Philippines. The movie was chronological in setting, featuring Marcos as a young boy in his hometown, as a brilliant student, and up to the time that he was unjustly imprisoned as a suspect in the murder of the political rival of his father. The movie then moves up to his acquittal, his career as a young congressman and senator, and up to the time that he married Imelda Marcos. The movie was shown in Manila as additional campaign material for Marcos’ candidacy for the Presidential race, which he eventually won. The movie portrayed Marcos as a person who is more than just a politician. – Wikipilipinas (READ MORE)

Iginuhit Ng Tadhana chronicles the rise of one of the most powerful and controversial leaders the Philippines has ever had- Ferdinand E. Marcos. The movie shows details of his life from the time he was born to his days as a youth in his hometown, growing up in a political family, to his incarceration for allegations of murdering his father’s political rival, up to his eventual acquittal. The movie then continues to show Marcos in the prime of his political career, winning seats in Congress and the Senate, up to his highly-publicized whirlwind marriage to Imelda Marcos. Originally shown and produced during the run-up to the political elections where Marcos won the Philippine presidency for the first time. Iginuhit ng Tadhana paints this erstwhile leader as more than a political personality. – Kabayan Central (READ MORE)

Film Achievement: Entry to the 1966 1st Manila Film Festival; 1965 FAMAS: Best Picture Nomination – 777 Films; Best Actor Nomination – Luis Gonzales; Best Actress Nomination – Gloria Romero

Film Review: “…As a piece of hagiography, you can’t get more melodramatic or shameless than 1965’s Iginuhit ng Tadhana (Drawn by Fate). In this biopic covering the life of kleptocrat and Martial Law architect Ferdinand Marcos (Luis Gonzalez) from his childhood to his ascent to the Philippine presidency, there is crying beside windows (courtesy of the martyr mother to end all martyr mothers, Rosa Mia), nervous wiping of brows on witness stands (because apparently, trial judges are blind to obvious body language), and kilometric monologues—including interior ones spoken in voice-over! How these characters don’t bore themselves to death is beyond me…Iginuhit ng Tadhana wastes no time getting down to its primary objective: settling scores. Conceived as propaganda for Ferdinand’s debut presidential campaign, the first 45 minutes of Iginuhit’s 136-minute running time busies itself scrubbing the Marcos name off the first of its multitude of sins: the death by sniper of Ferdinand’s political rival in Ilocos Norte, Julio Nalundasan. On the night of the murder, the film insists, our hero was busy reviewing for a law exam. He couldn’t possibly have stolen a rifle from his ROTC bunker and shot the congressman while he was brushing his teeth! And still, despite his nerd cred (and the aforementioned nervous mopping of brows by the star witness), the court had the gall to convict him! Hopefully, having gone through his own travesty of justice, our hero will have the empathy and drive to strengthen the rule of law in his own presidency, right? Right? Anyway, having demonstrated Ferdinand’s brilliance as he mounts his own defense in front of the Supreme Court, the film gets down to its next order of business: the meet-cute between our hero and his wife-to-be, Imelda Romualdez (Gloria Romero). Imelda is a far cry from his own mother, who visits her son in jail wearing a baro’t saya—no, when Ferdinand meets Imelda in the congressional cafeteria, she is wearing a man’s shirt, pants…and mismatched shoes! I can imagine the young Imelda watching this sequence and thinking, That will never happen again. After that, Iginuhit ticks off all the obligatory boxes: portraying Marcos as a family man, conscientious lawmaker, and devoted mama’s boy. (If I were Imelda and I were watching my husband call his mother “honey,” as this film says he does, I would have ran screaming from his latent Oedipus complex.) Oh, and watch out for a young Vilma Santos playing the eldest child, Imee. The role doesn’t give her much to do, but I foresee great things from this young performer…maybe even a run in politics…” – Andrew Paredes, ANC, 21 September 2018 (READ MORE)

“…Sinabi ni Ernesto Maceda, abugado ng 777 Productions, na ang pagpigil sa “Press Preview” o hayagang pagtatanghal ng “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” ay ilegal at labag sa saligang batas. Ayon kay Maceda, ang pelikula sinuri na ng BCMP, at dahil doon ay itinatanghal na iyon sa walong lalawigan…Sa isang dako, sinabi ni Gng. Olympia Lozano, kalihim-tagapagpaganap ng BCMP na pinigil ang pagtatanghal ng “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” dahil sa pagtanggi ng 777 Productions na iharap sa lupon ang pelikula upang suriin…Nagharap kagabi ng pagbibitiw sa Pangulong Macapagal si Jose L. Guevara bilang tagapangulo ng Board of Censors for Moving Pictures. Ginawa ni Guevara ang ganitong aksiyon kasunod ng pagpigil ng pelikulang “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” na naglalarawan sa buhay ni Sen. Ferdinand Marcos, kandidato sa pagka-pangulo ng NP. Ipinaliwanag ni Maceda na marami nang nakapanood ng “Iginuhit ng Tadhana”at nagkakaisa ng palagay ang lahat na walang batayan upang pigilin ang pagtatanghal nito. Upang masubhan kahit kaunti ang pagkayamot ng mga inayayahan sa “gala premiere” kagabi sa Rizal Theatre, ipinasiya ang pagtatanghal ng pelikulang Ingles, ang “The Thin Red Line…” – Leonardo P. Reyes, Taliba, 3 & 16 September 1965 (READ MORE)

“…Malamang makarating ngayon sa Korte Suprema ang hidwaan ng prodyuser ng Iginuhit ng Tadhana at ng lupon ng sensor na pumigil sa pagtatanghal sa publiko ng nasabing pelikula. Nakatakdang dumulog ngayon sa mataas ns hukuman ang mga abugado ng prodyuser ng pelikula matapos na pigilin ng hukuman sa paghahabol kahapon ang pagpapatupad sa utos ng mababang hukuman na nagpapahintulot sa pagtatanghal ng pelikula…Sa naunang hatol ni Hukom Edilberto Soriano ng hukumang unang dulugan ng Maynila ay ipinahintulot niya ang pagtatanghal sa masuliraning pelikula bagay na salungat sa pasiya ng lupon ng sensor na pumipigil sa nasabing pagtatanghal. Ang hatol ni Soriano ay idinulog ng mga abugado ng pamahalaan sa hukumang sa paghahabol sa kanilang matwid na walang huridiksiyon sa usapin ang mababang hukuman…Sinabi ni Abugado Claudio Teehankee, isa sa mga abugado ng prodyuser ng pelikula sa buhay ng Pangulong Ferdinand E. Marcos ng Senado na idudulog nila sa Korte Suprema ang desisyon inilagda kahapon ng Hukuman sa Paghahabol. Ipinaliwanag niyang ang dalawang sumusunod na matwid ang knailang ihaharap sa mataas na hukuman sa paghahabol: 2 Katwiran na Inilahad – 1. Na walang bisa ang kontrata na maaaring bawiin ang permiso sa isang pelikula upang maitanghal anumang oras. 2. Na hindi nagmalabis si Hukom Soriano sa pagpapasiya sa usapin…” – C. de Guzman, Taliba, 3 & 16 September 1965 (READ MORE)

“…Marcos knew the power of the medium of film. Earlier on, Marcos produced a film biography using the most popular stars for his first presidential campaign. He ran against Macapagal who also came up with a film biography to boost his reelection bid. Marcos would also use another film Iginuhit ng Tadhana (Written by Destiny, 1965) to campaign for a second term. The two Marcos film bios would be the only successful political films—commercial and election wise—as other film biographies in the post-Marcos period by senatorial and presidential aspirants would prove dismal, unhelpful for election bids. The post-Marcos period liberalized the political and economic scene. It conventionalized and intensified the election of movie and sports stars, and even television news hosts to national politics. Television stations were sequestered by the government, the largest of which, however, was returned to its pre-martial law owners. ABS-CBN would become the leading television station until after 2000, allowing two of its news anchors to become senators…” – Rolando Tino (READ MORE)

“…In 1965, the Board of Censors suspended the movie exhibition of Iginuhit ng Tadhana (a movie biography of Presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos). Many believed and suspected that Malacanang had a hand in the board’s decision and such action was a wrong political maneuver and ploy that proved disastrous to the reelection bid of incumbent President Diosadado Macapagal. It practically ensured the Presidential electoral victory of Marcos…The suspension of the showing of a movie on the life of Senate President Ferdinand E. Marcos stirred yesterday a political storm and precipitated the resignation of the chairman of the Board of Censors for Motion Pictures. Officials of the board said that the board voted to suspend the exhibition of the movie, “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” (Destined by Fate) because its producer failed to submit it for preview by the board en banc or by the entire board. The film had been approved for showing by a subcommittee of four headed by Mrs. Rosalina I. Castro last August 24. The board said it interpreted the refusal of the movie company, the 777 Film Productions, to comply with its order as defiance of the Board. The order of the board also suspends the showing of the movie in eight provinces and cities— Camarines Norte, Batangas, Marawi City, Pampanga, Cotabato, Aklan, Masbate, and Sulu. The film has been showing in theaters in these places since Aug. 24, the date of the approval of the picture by the subcommittee of four. In the wake of the suspension of the showing of the film, columnist Jose L. Guevarra, chairman of the board of censors, tendered his resignation. Guevarra did not state his reason for resigning in his letter to President Macapagal, but sources close to him said that the resolution of suspension, which was adopted in his absence, had something to do with it…” – Isagani Yambot, Sept. 3, 1965 (READ MORE)

“…Isa sa paborito ko ay ang Iginuhit ng Tadhana,” ayon pa kay Conrado, “because that film helped President Marcos win the elections in 1965. If you remember, that film was banned by the Macapagal administration and the people naturally became curious. The movie was a big hit.” Iginuhit ng Tadhana was divided into three parts: Marcos as student, Marcos after school and Marcos in his early years in politics. Conrado directed the portion with the President as a young man, during the Nalundasan case, a crucial part in the President’s life. Before he began shooting, according to Conrado, he made his own research and first visited Batac where they shot an important scene…” – Conrado CondeJingle Extra Hot Movie Entertainment Magazine, April 27 1981 (READ MORE)

“This rarely seen, authorized biography of former President Ferdinand Marcos stars Luis Gonzalez, Gloria Romero, Vilma Santos, and Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. as himself. (The film starts with a flash of lighting as he is born on 9/11 in 1917.) ” – Vincent Nebrida (READ MORE)

“…Ipinanganak nga marahil si Ma. Rosa Vilma Tuazon Santos sa show business dahil sa pagitan ng taping ng “Larawan..” ay nagkasunod-sunod na ang kanyang mga pelikula…“Iginuhit Ng Tadhana” ng 777 Films (Setyembre 7 – 15, 1965)…hanggang “Young Love” ng VP Enero 1 – 21, 1970) ng lumikha ng rekord sa takilya….Makalipas ang mga tatlong buwan, nakatanggap ng maikling sulat si Mama Santos muka lay G. Agra. Naghahanap ang Sampaguita Picutures ng batang babae na gaganap ng mahalagang papel sa “Anak, Ang Iyong Ina!” at isinali ng amain ang pangalan ni Vi. Hindi puwedeng lumiban si Papa Santos sa pinpasukang government office, at ayaw naman nilang mapahiya ang kamag-anak, kaya napilitan si Mama Santos na humingi ng day=off sa opisina (Aguinaldo’s). Pagdating sa studio, wala si G. Agra at nasa location shooting, ngunit totoong naroroon ang pangalan ni Vi, kaya’t pinapasok sila sa tanggapan. Napadaan sa harapan ni Mama Santos si Bella Flores na dala ang script ng “Trudis Liit.” Nagulumihanan si Mama Santos. Binasa niyang muli ang liham ni G. Agra. Mali yata ang napuntahan nila! Akma niyang tatawagin si Vi na noon ay nkikipaglaro sa iba pang mga bata upang yayain na itong umuwi, nang pumasok sina Mommy Vera, Dr. at Mrs. Perez, at Eddie Garcia. At doon nagsimula ang movie career ni Vi na magpahanggang ngayon ay batbat pa rin ng iba’t ibang panunuri, opinyon at konklusiyon…” – Ched P. Gonzales (READ MORE)

“…Pero higit na tumatak si Luis nang gampanan niya ng dalawang beses si Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos. Ito’y sa kontrobersyal na pelikulang “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” bago tumakbo si Marcos bilang presidente noong 1965. Sinundan ito ng “Pinagbuklod ng Langit” noong 1969. Si Imee Marcos, na ginampanan noon ni Vilma Santos, naalala ang galing ni Luis na mahirap na daw tapatan ngayon. “His acting was understated. A great actor and a good friend. He played a big role in our lives. Halos naniniwala na ako na tatay ko siya dahil sa boses. Mahal na mahal namin si Luis Gonzales,” sabi ni Imee. Ayon sa kanyang kabiyak, huling hiling ni Luis na ipa-cremate ang kanyang labi…” – Mario Dumaual (READ MORE)

“…Vilma was talking about Trudis Liit, the ’60s Sampaguita tearjerker in which she played the title role, with Luis playing her father, now US-based Lolita Rodriguez her mother and Bella Flores as the kontrabida. Luis, whose real surname is Mercado, died of complications of pneumonia at 11:30 Thursday night, March 15, at the Makati Medical Center where he was confined for the last time (he had been in and out of the hospital). As in the case of movie greats, Luis’ age is confidential and maybe not even his wife Vina Concepcion, who belongs to the clan that owns Concepcion Industries, and their three children can be forced to reveal it. After Trudis Liit, Vilma would star with Luis years later when she was already a teenager, in Iginuhit ng Tadhana and in Pinagbuklod ng Langit, produced by Sampaguita Pictures, believed to have helped Ferdinand Marcos win when he ran for President and then for reelection. In both movies, Luis plays Marcos, with Gloria Romero as First Lady Imelda Marcos and Vilma as Imee Marcos (now Ilocos Norte Governor). In the second, Gina Alajar plays as Irene Marcos (Mrs. Greggy Araneta), Now-Sen. Bongbong Marcos plays himself in the first movie (it was Jonjie Aranda, ex-husband of Sen. Loren Legarda, who plays Bongbong in the second). “I shot Palimos ng Pagibig (a Viva drama, with Edu Manzano and Dina Bonnevie) at Luis’ house,” added Vilma. “I remember him as sobrang kalog, palabiro. Ang tawag namin kay Tito Luis palengke kasi nga Mercado ang real surname niya. I was nine years old then and he always reminded me to just enjoy everything. We were always shooting dramatic scenes at parati akong iyak nang iyak, but after every take, tawa na kami nang tawa because Tito Luis would start cracking jokes…” – RicoJr (READ MORE)

“…And what many people probably didn’t know is that Bongbong played himself in Iginuhit ng Tadhana, produced by Sampaguita Pictures as a campaign pitch for Ferdinand when he first run for president in 1965, with Gloria Romero as Imelda, Luis Gonzales as Ferdinand, (now reelectionist Batangas Gov.) Vilma Santos as Imee and Gina Alajar as Irene (now Mrs. Greggy Araneta). A few years later, a sequel, titled Pinagbuklod ng Langit, was produced also by Sampaguita, directed by Eddie Garcia, with Gloria, Luis, Vilma and Gina reprising their roles and Jose “Jonjie” Aranda (first husband of Bongbong’s fellow Nacionalista, reelectionist Sen. Loren Legarda; their marriage was annulled in 1986) playing Bongbong….” – Ricardo F. Lo (READ MORE)

“…In hid book, Don Jose & The Early Philippine Cinema, Joe Quirino credits jose Nepomuceno pioneer in producing movies that not only entertained but also informed. Wrote Quirino: “His screen adaptation of Noli Me Tangere, Jose Rizal’s novel exposing the social cancer that festered during the Spanish occupation of the Philippines, captured the sardonic and satirical contents of the imflammatory noel.” Satire was a popular device through which producer aired their views on social issues. In 1929, a satirical movie called Patria Amore caught the ire of the local Spanish community who went to court to stop its exhibition. A counterpart incident took place in 1965 when the Liberal Party tried to stop the showing of Iginuhit ng Tadhana, the propagandistic movie of the life of Ferdinand Marcos. The same motion picture propelled Marcos to the presidency. Movies of social significance often face this dillemma on their way to the big screen. Because of their strong public statement, they invite uproar from concerned sectors, an experience that became almost a daily ordeal for the late director, Lino Brocka. In recent years and until his death in 1991, Brocka had been the prime mover of Tagalog movies of social significance. Some of his works that easily fall under this category are, in no particular orderL Orapronobis (about vigilantes and rebels in the countryside), Bayan Ko (on labor unrest), Gumapang Ka sa Lusak and Hahamakin Lahat (on political corruption), Maynila: Sa Mga Kuko ng Liwanag (on moral degradation and exploitation)…” – Nestor Cuartero, Panorama, dated June 13, 1993 (READ MORE)

“…A number of films suffered a similar fate at the hands of the censors, including so-called political films, no matter how mature or serious the treatment was. One such example is Gerardo de Leon’s Daigdig ng Mga Api (1965), a dramatization of the problem of tenancy in our country. Another one is Maliwalu Massacre, whose exhibition was stopped by influential groups with access to the censors. Political factions likewise used film to advance the cause of their party and enhance the image of their candidates in the elections. Even Ferdinand Marcos biography on film, Iginuhit ng Tadhana, was recalled during the incumbency of newspaperman Jose Guevarra but was nevertheless shown prior to the 1965 elections…” – Justino Dormiendo, Parade Magazine, September 25, 1983 (READ MORE)

“…The First Manila Film Festival was held for the first time in 1966. Reserved solely for Hollywood and foreign movies, first-run downtown theaters like Ideal, Odeon, State, Ever, Galaxy, Capitol, Lyric, among others were opened for exhibition to locally-produced or Tagalog movies. The filmfest was the brainchild of then Manila Mayor Antonio Villegas. The 10-day festival which coincided on the city’s foundation day (June 24) was a huge success participated in by big names in the industry…A total of 18 movies (14 new, 4 reissues) were exhibited during the 10-day festival. Iginuhit ng Tadhana, Portrait of the Artist as Filipino and Daigdig ng mga Api, all released in 1965, and Zamboanga, shown a month earlier, were allowed to participate…” – VIdeo48 (READ MORE)

RELATED READING:

Filmography: Trudis Liit (1963)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Basic Information:Directed: Jose De Villa; Story: Mars Ravelo; Screenplay: Chito B. Tapawan; Cast: Vilma Santos, Connie Angeles, Lolita Rodriguez, Luis Gonzales, Bella Flores, Charlie Davao, Rodolfo ‘Boy’ Garcia, Ely Roque, Matimtiman Cruz, Ray Marcos, Ven Medina, Venchito Galvez; Original Music: Pastor de Jesus; Executive producer: Dr. Jose Vera Perez

Plot Description: Ang Trudis Liit ay isang pelikulang Drama kung saan inaapi ang kaawa-awang si Trudis (Vilma Santos) ng kanyang madrasta (Bella Flores). Ito ay ipinalabas noong Pebrero 21, taong 1963. Wikipedia

Film Achievement: 1963 FAMAS AwardsBest Child Actress – Vilma Santos; The film was remade into a teleserye in 2010 starring Jillian Ward and into a film in 1996 starring Marijoy Adorable.

Film Reviews: “This is, of course, Vilma’s first film and it has all the elements of a melodrama – the good guys and one extremely bad woman (Bella Flores). This early, you can already tell that Vilma was to the acting profession born. (She won FAMAS Best Child Actress for this film). She doesn’t allow herself to be eclipsed by her veteran co-stars: Luis Gonzales and the Lolita Rodriguez. But with due respect to Vilma, even if she is the one who plays the title role here and is undeniably good in this Sampaguita Pictures box-office hit, the one who leaves a really lasting impression in the minds of most viewers is the character played by Connie Angeles – Oreng. After all, wasn’t it this girl who gets chewed up by a German Shepherd in the film?” – Butch Francisco, Newsflash.org, Feb 2004

“Nakihalo lang ako doon sa mga nag-a-audition sa Trudis Liit [1963],” pagbabalik-tanaw ng aktres kung paano siya napasok sa showbiz at naging bida nga kaagad sa nabanggit niyang proyektong iyon. Hindi ako dapat talaga doon [sa audition na iyon]. Nakipila lang ako. Pagpila ko, tinatawag ako ng mommy ko na, ‘Hindi ka diyan! Sabi ko, ‘Andito na, e!’ Makulit na ako no’ng time na ‘yon! So, anyway, tinawag ako ni Doc Perez [of Sampaguita Pictures] at that time. Pinaarte ako. Nag-adlib-adlib pa ako. Nakuha naman ako. So, when I started, dalawa kaagad ang pelikula ko—Trudis Liit at Anak, Ang Iyong Ina [1963]. Ang naaalala ko lang tungkol sa maaga kong pagpasok sa pag-aartista, parang laro lang sa akin iyon. Parang naglalaro lang ako noon kaya hindi trabaho sa akin iyon, e. So, very-very memorable sa akin iyon. At saka no’ng Trudis Liit, every lunch, lagi akong may apple. Lagi akong may chicken. Every lunch talaga ‘yon. Parang… Siguro bata, so ibibigay nila ‘yong gano’ng ano sa ‘yo. Parang may prize ka, gano’n. So, memorable sa akin iyon.” – Vilma Santos (READ MORE)

“…Contravida Queen Bella Flores was featured in “Showbiz Central’s” Most Influential segment as she plays a big part in GMA Films’ new movie with Rhian Ramos and Aljur Abrenica, “My Kontrabida Girl.” It’s also a tribute to Bella as she’s celebrating her 60th anniversary in showbiz. The screen name Bella Flores was given to her by the late Sampaguita Pictures’ boss Dr. Jose Perez. “I was so glad when I was told it means beautiful flowers,” she said. Her real name is Remedios Dancel and she was born on Feb. 27, 1936, which means she turned 76 yesterday, Monday (Feb 27/2012). She was only 15 when she did her first villain role maltreating child star Tessie Agana in the blockbuster “Roberta.” She recounted that Vilma Santos auditioned with her for her first movie, “Trudis Liit,” in 1963. “Natakot siya at tumakbo dahil nakita niyang pinahirapan ko ‘yung ibang batang nag-audition,” she said. “Ngayon, governor na siya. Sina Roderick Paulate at Gina Alajar, sa’kin din nagsimula as child stars sa ‘Kaibigan Kong Sto. Nino’…” – Mario Bautista (READ MORE)

“Ang pelikula ni Ate Vi na Trudis Liit ay tandang tanda ng maraming Vilmanians. Nagdulot ito ng unang karangalan para kay Ate Vi at sa murang edad ng siyam. Sa mga Vilmanians ang maraming madramang eksena ni Vilma rito’y natanim sa ating alaala. Ang sabi nga ng isa sa ating Vilmanian na si Henry Llaneza, “the first movie I’ve seen in Black & White TV mula sa bintana ng kapitbahay ay ang “Trudis Liit” na napaiyak ang lahat ng nanonood dito nagsimula ang lahat…” ng kanyang pagiging isang Vilmanian. Katulad ni Henry, dito rin nagsimula ang aking paghanga sa star for all season. Galit na galit ako nuon kay Bella Flores dahil sa pang-aaping ginawa niya kay Trudis. Sa pagkapanalo ni Ate Vi ng FAMAS Best Child Actress sa pelikulang ito, sinundan pa ng Sampaguita Pictures ang tagumpay nito sa pamamagitan ng pelikulang Ging. Dito makikita ang malinaw na talento ni Ate Vi. Hindi lamang sa kanyang hindi pilit na pag-iyak kundi sa pagkanta rin. Dito rin sa pelikulang ito’y nakipagsabayan siya sa pagganap ni Olivia Cenizal at sa pang-aapi ni Carol Varga. Ang dekada ng sisenta ay patuloy na nagbigay ng maraming pelikula kay Ate Vi magmula sa pagiging isang batang artista hanggang sa isang teenager. Umabot ito sa unang karangalan niya bilang isang hindi na batang artista sa pamamagitan ng pagkanominado niya sa Best Supporting Actress muli sa FAMAS at ang kanyang pagkapanalo ng parehong titulo mula naman sa San Beda College…” – RV (READ MORE)

“…Vilma was talking about Trudis Liit, the ’60s Sampaguita tearjerker in which she played the title role, with Luis playing her father, now US-based Lolita Rodriguez her mother and Bella Flores as the kontrabida. Luis, whose real surname is Mercado, died of complications of pneumonia at 11:30 Thursday night, March 15, at the Makati Medical Center where he was confined for the last time (he had been in and out of the hospital). As in the case of movie greats, Luis’ age is confidential and maybe not even his wife Vina Concepcion, who belongs to the clan that owns Concepcion Industries, and their three children can be forced to reveal it. After Trudis Liit, Vilma would star with Luis years later when she was already a teenager, in Iginuhit ng Tadhana and in Pinagbuklod ng Langit, produced by Sampaguita Pictures, believed to have helped Ferdinand Marcos win when he ran for President and then for reelection. In both movies, Luis plays Marcos, with Gloria Romero as First Lady Imelda Marcos and Vilma as Imee Marcos (now Ilocos Norte Governor). In the second, Gina Alajar plays as Irene Marcos (Mrs. Greggy Araneta), Now-Sen. Bongbong Marcos plays himself in the first movie (it was Jonjie Aranda, ex-husband of Sen. Loren Legarda, who plays Bongbong in the second). “I shot Palimos ng Pagibig (a Viva drama, with Edu Manzano and Dina Bonnevie) at Luis’ house,” added Vilma. “I remember him as sobrang kalog, palabiro. Ang tawag namin kay Tito Luis palengke kasi nga Mercado ang real surname niya. I was nine years old then and he always reminded me to just enjoy everything. We were always shooting dramatic scenes at parati akong iyak nang iyak, but after every take, tawa na kami nang tawa because Tito Luis would start cracking jokes…” – RicoJr (READ MORE)

“…Bella Flores (born Remedios Dancel) began terrorizing lead actors and actresses since she was cast as the evil stepmother in the 1951 film Roberta. Since then, she has been cast in over a hundred films, making life miserable for the likes of little Vilma Santos in the 1964 film Trudis Liit and young Gina Alajar in the 1970 film Robina…Her screen name might mean “beautiful flowers,” but she has piercing eyes (always with tons of black eyeliner) and a husky voice that easily send shivers down one’s spine. She seems to excel in terrorizing kids in movies…” – Spot.ph (READ MORE)

Oreng, Trudis’ sister “…I was five when I did ‘Eskuwelahang Munti,’” Connie begins. “Maybe, my mother harbored a secret ambition to become an actress that’s why she took me there. Sintunado ako pero wala namang pinipili doon. As long as you can face the camera, and tumula ka d’yan, kumanta ka…Its products were Edgar Mortiz, Ike Lozada and Perla Adea. ‘Pag bata kasi, patatawarin ka kahit sintunado. May ribbon ako na malalaki, bungi pa ako noon. “In Trudis, we were 800 plus during the audition. Tita Lolit (Lolita Rodriguez) and Tita Bella (Flores) talked to my mother. Siguro, natutuwa sa akin. They told her na kukurutin daw ako para umiyak pero kailangan daw sabihin ko ang lines ko. So, nakuha ako, kasi the other children forgot to say the dialogue when they started crying. “I played Oreng, yung sister ni Trudis na kinagat ng aso. But I never became a dramatic actress, because I didn’t know how to cry. In one scene, inaagaw na yung baboy namin do’n, ipagbibili na ni Bella. When Ate Vi (Vilma Santos) cried, iyak na din ako pero boses lang. Wala talagang luha. Kakausapin na naman nila nanay ko. Kunwari papauwiin na ako. ‘Pag umiyak na ako, they would start shooting. After our scenes, Tito Luis (Gonzalez) and Tita Lolit would buy us Max chicken kasi pinahirapan nila kaming umiyak…” – Gypsy Baldovino (READ MORE)

“…a star, er, actress was born. Impressive start, easily cries on cue, rewarded by the FAMAS for best child actress. She had a movie with Gloria Romero and Rita Gomez in Anak, Ang Iyong Ina…” – anonymous (READ MORE)

Sampaguita vs LVN – “…During the 1950s and the early 1960s Sampaguita and LVN were acknowledged leaders of the industry. Dr. Jose Perez, Sampaguita general manager, went on to discover an array of luminaries including Gloria Romero (who won the FAMAS best actress award in “Dalagang Ilocana”), Rita Gomez, Greg Martin, Susan Roces, Amalia Fuentes, Romeo Vasquez, Barbara Perez, Tony Marzan, and Eddie Garcia who has won more acting trophies than any other Filipino thespian in the history of Philippine movies. It was also Doc Perez who gave both Vilma Santos and Rod Navarro their first movie breaks. Vilma was the child star of “Trudis Liit” while Rod appeared as an extra in a now forgotten Sampaguita movie. Meanwhile, LVN too was turning out blockbusters during the 1950s. Among its many stars were Pugo and Tugo (Doctor X, Pulo ng Engkanto, Dalawang Prinsepeng Kambal), Armando Goyena (father of Maritess and Tina Revilla), Celia Flor, Teody Belarmino, Tony Santos, Lilia Dizon, Tessie Quintana, Mario Montenegro, Jaime de la Rosa, Delia Razon, Rosa Rosal, Nestor de Villa and the uninhibited Nida Blanca. LVN produced such unforgettable musical comedies as Batanguena, Waray-Waray, and Saydwok Bendor (all starring Nida Blanca); such fantasy films as Tungkod ni Moses (where Director Richard Abelardo divided the Red Sea) and Rodrigo de Villa; and such dramatic tearjerker as In Despair (Mila del Sol and Jaime de la Rosa), Pag-asa (Armando Goyena and Priscilla Cellona), Yolanda (Celia Flor and Teody Belarmino), and Aklat ng Buhay (Rosa Rosal and Oscar Keesee)…” – Joe Quirino, Times Journal, August 19, 1977 (READ MORE)

RELATED READINGS: