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Tuesday, April 3, 2012


SEMERAH PADI (1956)

THE BEST FILM EVER DIRECTED BY P.RAMLEE
By Mustafar A.R. & Zaini Yusop


"LET THE WORLD KNOW, HOW PROUD WE ARE
WITH P.RAMLEE AND HIS FILM, SEMERAH PADI"


P.RAMLEE, SA'ADIAH & SALLEH KAMIL


P.RAMLEE SANG "MAKAN SIREH DI SEMERAH PADI"

"SEKAPUR SIREH SEULAS PINANG"

NORDIN AHMAD (TARUNA) & P.RAMLEE (ADUKA)

* MALAY FILM PRODUCTIONS LTD. [SB] Present SEMERAH PADI Starring NORDIN AHMAD SA'ADIAH P. RAMLEE Co-starring DAENG IDRIS NORMADIAH MUSALMAH SALLEH KAMIL A. RAHIM With MALIK SUTAN MUDA SA'AMAH ZAINON KEMAT HASSAN SHARIFF DOL MUHAMMAD HAMID NYAK OSMAN OMAR SUWITA Photography C. RAMACHANDRAN Original Story OMAR ROJIK Screenplay P. RAMLEE Dialogues S. SUDARMADJI Silat Instructor MALIK S.M. Continuity SALEHA Music P. RAMLEE Lyrics JAMIL SULONG Orchestra M.F.P. STUDIO ORCHESTRA Score FRED LIBIO Playback Singer SALOMA Dance Instructor NORMADIAH Production Manager KWEK CHIP JIAN Film Editor H.R. NARAYANA Audiography MOK CHEK POH Art Director J.S. ANTHONY Laboratory CHOW CHENG KOK and LEE MONG NAM Assistants Director S. HASSAN SAHAB and S. SUDARMADJI Photography S. JUMARI Audiography WONG SHAUR LEEI Film Editor K.K. RAMAN Art Director A. RASUL Laboratory WONG HONG PENG Producer RUN RUN SHAW Director P. RAMLEE

* Original, as recorded in the credit title

Year release: 1956 (14 July)
Running time: 100 Minutes (approximately)



SYNOPSIS___

The incident occurred in Semerah Padi Village. The Village Chief and his followers were very faithful and firm with the Islamic religion. The Village Chief had two assistants (Commander Semerah Padi) - Taruna (The Right Assistant) and Aduka (The Left Assistant). Taruna and Aduka, apart from being the most loyal guardian and Penghulu’s assistant, they were very close friends who were more than blood brothers.

The Semerah Padi Village Chief had a very beautiful daughter named Dara who loved Aduka. Aduka loved Dara too. Taruna too loved Dara but was not reciprocated. Dara was cool towards Taruna. However. Dara was engaged to Aduka after the Village Chief and his wife were satisfied with Taruna’s character and agreed to by Taruna’s parents.

Even though it was difficult to accept Taruna as a husband, it was the custom in Semerah Padi that the daughter should accept the parent’s wishes. So, Dara agreed to her engagement with Taruna. Meanwhile, Aduka accepted the engagement with a broken heart. Aduka distanced himself from Dara.

On the night of the engagement between Taruna and Dara, the calm of the night was broken when a resident (Keciwa) suffered severe wounds after being attacked by his wife (Galak) and a young man (Jejaka) from another village.

They also committed adultery. Keciwa finally died and this made the Semerah Padi Village Chief direct Aduka to arrest both of them for causing murder and adultery. However, Taruna also wanted to follow him (initially the Village Chief prevented Taruna from going because it was his engagement night with Dara) because he regarded it as a duty which should be carried out by him.

After a violent fight between Taruna and Aduka on one side with Jejaka and Galak on the other side, finally Taruna and Aduka succeeded in arresting Jejaka and Galak.

Because of their involvement in murder and adultery was considered a serious crime,the Village Chief was left with no alternative but to follow the Quranic laws to punish them with death penalty by impaling.

With the punishment carried out, it made Borek (Jejaka’s brother) go berserk and vowed to take revenge against Semerah Padi Village Chief. He intended to kill the Village Chief but before that Borek and his followers burned and murdered people turning Semerah Padi into a chaotic village.

However, with the presence of Taruna and Aduka who were known for their strength and bravery, many of Borek’s followers were killed leaving only Borek himself on the run.

Even though Semerah Padi Village was in a chaotic and unstable condition, the Village Chief did not disappoint the Sultan when he requested 11 more volunteers to fight pirates who were causing problems on the seas as a show of allegiance and service to the country. Aduka was asked to remain at Semerah Padi as a leader to maintain peace.

Borek’s flame of hatred towards the Village Chief did not diminish and came to its peak when he decided to kidnap Dara. Aduka managed to trace the derelict hut where Borek took Dara. However, before Borek could proceed with his intention of molesting Dara, Aduka reached the location and so a violent fight broke out between Aduka and Borek which ended in Borek’s death. He died by Aduka’s chopping knife.

Aduka brought the unconscious Dara home. However, on the way home, while taking shelter in a shed due to a heavy rain, Aduka was unable to control his sexual urge because of Dara’s pleading and so they committed adultery.

On Taruna’s arrival at Semerah Padi Village, after a successful naval mission, he was told by Aduka that Aduka had committed adultery with Dara (his fiancé) and wanted Taruna to kill him. However, Taruna refused because he loved Aduka much more than Dara. He even said figuratvely, “However bad the meat is, I will eat it as long as you are not harmed.” Dara’s situation was also known to her parents.

Taruna then went to meet the Semerah Padi Village Chief to quicken his marriage with Dara but Dara’s parents objected it and returned the customary betel leaves as a sign of breaking off the engagement.

As a strict and faithful Village Chief to God, he decided to punish Aduka and Dara according to the Quran’s laws by giving 100 lashes of rattan each even though Taruna pleaded to reduce the number of lashes.

When the punishment was over and both Aduka and Dara had recovered from the effects of the punishment, they were married and witnessed by Taruna, Dara’s former fiancé.

P.RAMLEE AS DIRECTOR & ACTOR___

The strength of this film depended on P. RAMLEE’s direction. His choices of actors and actresses were also perfect for their roles such as Sa’adiah, Nordin Ahmad as Taruna and Daeng Idris as the Village Chief of Semerah Padi.

Even though it contained scenes copied from Japanese and Hindustani films, it was still perfect and portrayed his maturity through this second film in spearheading a film to reach a higher level as compared to the other directors who had previously worked at MFP.

P. RAMLEE’s acting was good as usual. His role as Aduka was well performed. Just as in “Penarek Becha”, his appearance in this film looked unhappy (except for at the beginning of the film) because his love towards Dara was unsuccessful due to Dara’s parents’ preference to Taruna to be their son-in-law.

Even though playing the role of a second hero, there were instances where he performed perfectly well like when he met Salleh Kamil who kidnapped Sa’adiah to take revenge and where he confronted Nordin Ahmad after committing adultery with Sa’adiah who played the role as Dara.

It was not easy to simultaneously direct and act but P. RAMLEE was able to do it well that it became the best film among the films he ever directed and acted. Everything about this film was perfect (the story, acting, photography, editing and the rest). The only thing it lacked was that it was not produced in color.

RHYTHMS & SONGS___

All were traditional Malay songs and all became people’s favourites.
1. Semerah Padi (P. RAMLEE & Group)
2. Makan Sireh Di Semerah Padi (P. RAMLEE)
3. Sekapur Sireh Seulas Pinang (Saloma)
4. Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi (Momo)
5. Lenggang Kangkong Baru (Saloma)
Composer & arranger: P. RAMLEE
Lyrics: Jamil Sulong
Music score: Fred Libio
Accompanying music: M.F.P. Studio Orchestra

BEHIND THE SCENES___

According to what Omar Rojik told me (a few months before his death) the title of the story was “Pukau” (his own story) based on a Langkawi legend, “Mahsuri”. It was later modified (P. RAMLEE rearranged the original story) with the scenes and dialogues written by P. RAMLEE himself.

The story of “Mahsuri” by Tunku Abdul Rahman (the first Prime Minister of Malaysia) was turned into a film by Cathay Keris Film with Kasma Booty as Mahsuri and directed by B.N.Rao. It was also produced in color.

P.RAMLEE also wanted to make it a great film with the title of “Long Batee”, but due to its costumes and background which could complicate matters, P. RAMLEE had to change its title to “Semerah Padi” with the story and more moderate costumes and background.

In this second film he directed, P.RAMLEE again blended the main actors and actresses who acted in the first film he directed (“Penarek Becha”) such as Sa’adiah playing the main role (Dara), he himself as Aduka and Salleh Kamil as a crook - Borek.

Daeng Idris who initially name as the role of Orangkaya Marzuki (then played by Udo Omar) in “Penarek Becha”, held the role of the Village Chief of Semerah Padi.

Since the film “Takdir Illahi” (1951), P. RAMLEE always played the role of a hero, but in this second film he acted the leading actor in supporting role while Nordin Ahmad played the leading role - Taruna.

This film also entered the 3rd. Asia-Pacific Film Festival in Hong Kong together with “Hang Tuah” but due to its religious characteristics, the jury could not evaluate it for any award.

I still remember when I saw the film in Capitol Cinema, Kuala Lumpur at a midnight show when the Union Jack was taken down and the Malayan Flag was raised (31st. August 1957) at the Selangor Club Padang (now Dataran Merdeka), there was a scene where Sa’adiah sang "Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi" in color.

When it was shown on TV and also on VCD and DVD, this scene was cut. That scene was before Sa’adiah was kidnapped by Salleh Kamil.

In producing films, a director cannot escape from copying other people’s creation. Even the famous director (Steven Spielberg) was not immuned to it.

The same was with P.RAMLEE. Since he was influenced by a Japanese director (Akira Kurosawa) P. RAMLEE copied the techniques where the camera moved fast as used by Akira Kurosawa in his film “Rashomon”. The scene was when P.RAMLEE was searching for Sa’adiah who was kidnapped by Salleh Kamil in the jungle.

The background music too was copied from “Rashomon”. It can be said many scenes in this film were influenced by “Rashomon”.

However, the scene at the hut after Dara was saved by Aduka (before adultery happened) was similar to the scene found in the film directed by Raj Kapoor - “Awara”.

The scene showing the world spinning in its orbit before the beginning of this film was copied from “Samson and Delilah” which was directed by Cecil B.DeMille and, before that, “Casablanca” directed by Micheal Curtiz.

COMMENTS & CRITIQUES___

After directing “Penarek Becha”, P.RAMLEE directed this film which higlighted Islamic religious laws based on the Quran. This dramatic film in a traditional setting was directed by P.RAMLEE with perfection. To me this was the best among the films directed and acted by P.RAMLEE.

If The Malaysian Film Festival were held then, this film would have grabbed many awards including Best Film, Best Director (P.RAMLEE), Best Male Actor (Nordin Ahmad), Best Female Actress (Sa’adiah), Best Photography (C. Ramachandran), Best Film Editor (H. R. Narayana), Best Song ("Sekapur Sireh Seulas Pinang"), Best Male Supporting Actor (P.RAMLEE), Best Story (Omar Rojik) and Best Screenplay (P.RAMLEE).

The readers’ choice in Bintang magazine chose this film (Best Film), P.RAMLEE (Best Director), Sa’adiah (Best Actress) as well placed. Only the choice of P.RAMLEE (Best Actor) was rather misplaced because Nordin Ahmad was the leading actor.

The plot arrangement of this film was firm. Beginning with the peaceful environment of Kampung Semerah Padi it was followed by the upheavals as Jejaka and Galak committed serious crimes of killing and adultery. Making it more problematic, Borek reacted to take revenge on the Village Chief of Semerah Padi for issuing a death sentence (impalement) on his brother - Jejaka.

Tension escalated when Jejaka kidnapped Dara. After Dara was saved by Aduka, they committed adultery. Then Aduka asked Taruna to kill him because he committed adultery with Dara (Aduka’s fiancé). The Village Chief was caught in a dilemma to impose Allah’s punishment towards his own daughter and his Left Assistant.

That was a perfect plot arrangement. The editing (by H.R.Narayana) was also one of the reasons why this film could be considered the best film not only by his direction but also the other directors, especially in MFP.

As regards to acting, it was beyond doubt anymore. The list of awards which could have been won by him was enough to prove the credibility of the roles played by Nordin Ahmad, Sa’adiah, Salleh Kamil, Daeng Idris and P.RAMLEE himself.

The photography technique (by C.Ramachandran) which was based on Japanese films, especially “Rashomon”, was very much different from what was seen in “Penarek Becha”.

The fighting scene between Aduka and Borek at the old hut in the jungle was the second best fighting scene after “Sumpah Orang Minyak” and the traditional melody songs also portrayed P.RAMLEE’s excellence as a film director.

What was missing (as mentioned earlier) was its color. Had it been colored it would be more interesting. Yes, when the time come, "Semerah Padi" will be in color. Wait and see.

AWARDS___

1. Best Film
2. Best Director (P.RAMLEE)
3. Best Actor (P.RAMLEE)
4. Best Actress (Sa’adiah)
* Organised by Bintang magazine (1956)
5. Best Supporting Actor (Nordin Ahmad)
* Organised by Utusan Film Dan Sport (1956)

* The Best Supporting Actor award should not be given to Nordin Ahmad because he was not a supporting actor but the male actor in a leading role. P.RAMLEE then should not be given the Best Actor award because he was not the main actor but just a supporting actor.

Even in the credit title, P. RAMLEE was placed third. However, this sort of slip-ups do occur in Hollywood Oscar Awards in determining its categories.



SEMERAH PADI FULL MOVIE (Sumber: Pinatubo)


FIVE VIDEO CLIPS FROM "SEMERAH PADI"___




(sumber: alam07shah)


(sumber: pcbajet)


(sumber: njendra)


(sumber: njendra)


(sumber: pakcummy)

FACTS & FIGURES___

* This was the first film which P.RAMLEE used a story written by Omar Rojik. Later, P.RAMLEE also directed films based on stories written by Omar Rojik - “Antara Dua Darjat” and “Dr.Rushdi”.
* This was the second film P.RAMLEE chose Sa’adiah and Salleh Kamil to act in his film after “Penarek Becha”.
* Not many were aware that this P.RAMLEE film was also done in color - the scene when Sa’adiah (using Momo’s voice) sang "Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi" before Salleh Kamil kidnapped Sa’adiah. It was not known why the scene was cut later.
* The first time P.RAMLEE’s name as director was put at the end of the film.
* This film broke the record the number of screening days of “Penarek Becha” (21 days) in Singapore - 26 days, Capitol Cinema 20 days and Queen 6 days.
* After starring in this film, Nordin Ahmad received a better offer from Cathay Keris Film and more successful when he acted in “Orang Minyak”, “Serangan Orang Minyak”, “Noor Islam”, “Sultan Mahmood Mangkat Di Julang”, “Sri Mersing”, “Laila Majnun” and “ Gurindam Jiwa”. He was appointed director in 1964 with his first film, “Wan Perkasa”.
* Nordin Ahmad was born in Butterworth, Penang in 1932 and began his career through film “Juwita”. He died due to yellow fever on 15th. Jun 1971.


# Update will be made from time to time.




KONSEP PENERBITANNYA HARUS DIPUJI

Setelah diamati buku setebal 355 muka surat ini, kesimpulannya konsep penerbitannya harus dipuji kerana ia berlainan sekali dari apa yang pernah disajikan sebelum ini. Dilihat pula dari segi kesungguhan kedua-dua insan (Datuk Aziz Sattar dan Mustafar A.R.) yang pernah mengenali P. Ramlee, banyak betul perkara yang boleh kita ambil iktibar, dan 20 tahun bukan masa yang sedikit untuk mereka menyiapkan buku yang cukup bermutu ini. Memang benar karya peninggalan Seniman Agung Tan Sri P.Ramlee tiada bandingan dan sumbangannya dalam bidang seni terus abadi dan terpahat dalam minda semua lapisan masyarakat, namun di sebalik kehebatannya, buku ini yang turut menyelitkan gambar-gambar dari filem, sinopsis, ulasan dan pengalaman kedua penulis ketika pembikinan 66 filem P. Ramlee, ada memaparkan kisah menarik antaranya bagaimana P.Ramlee menceduk idea dari filem-filem luar untuk disesuaikan dengan filem-filem arahannya - Kakak Tua.




10 comments:

  1. Maaf kalau saya tersilap. Jika mengikut kajian saya, filem "semerah Padi" bukanlah filem terakhir lakonan Nordin Ahmad sebelum berhijrah ke Cathay-Keris Film.

    Selepas "Semerah Padi", Nordin berlakon di dalam filem "Anak-Ku Sazali" (1956). Pada pendapat saya, filem terakhir Nordin Ahmad di Malay Film Productions adalah filem "Belantara" (1957) bersama Normadiah.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ya, memang betul.
    Maksudnya disini, apabila Nordin Ahmad memperlihatkan lakonannya yang mantap dalam "Semerah Padi", Cathay Keris menawarkannya untuk datang berkhidmat di studio tersebut.
    Bagaimanapun, dia tidak terus menerimanya tetapi menyudahkan terlebih dulu filem "Anak-Ku Sazali" dan filem terakhirnya di MFP, "Belantara".
    Apa pun, saya ucapkan terima kasih kepada sdra Anonymous.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Assalamualaikum encik Mustafa A.R,
    Tiada sebarang komen ataupun cadangan cuma ingin mengucapkan terima kasih atas informasi yang amat berguna kerana saya adalah peminat filem 70an lebih2 lagi cerita2 tentang pelakon kesayangan saya, Allahyarham Tan Sri P Ramlee. Teruskan usaha anda dan saya menyokong penuh blog ini dari masa ke semasa.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Terima kasih Sdra TheSecretCode.
      Sambutan yang dicapai FKM luar jangkaan.
      Betul kata orang tua-tua:
      "Tak kenal maka tak cinta".
      Ketika mula kewujudannya saya ragu-ragu
      tentang sambutan yang bakal diterima.
      Berapa ramai yang mahu membacanya,
      dalam Bahasa Malaysia dan topiknya pula
      lebih menjurus filem Melayu lama, klasik.
      Tetapi ternyata ramalan saya meleset,
      sebagai bukti Sdra lihat saja artikel
      Statistik FKM yang baru saja disiarkan.
      Nampaknya, keiklasan saya membina blog
      FKM ini direstui dan diterima dengan baik.

      Delete
  4. Assalamualaikum Encik Mustafar.

    Semoga dipanjangkan umur dan dikurniakan kesihatan yang baik.

    Apabila saya membaca dalam buku "Filem-Filem P. Ramlee" yang mengatakan dalam filem "Semerah Padi" ada lagu "Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi", saya terpanggil untuk membuat semakan pada title credit filem itu.

    Apabila saya menyemak title credit, tidak tercatat nama Momo sebagai playback singer.

    Sekiranya benar wujud lagu "Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi", kenapa nama Momo tidak dicatatkan.

    Selalunya kalau lagu itu wujud dalam filem berkenaan, nama playback singer itu akan ditulis dalam title credit.

    Terus terang Encik Mustafar, saya belum pernah mendengar lagu "Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi" itu sampailah sekarang.

    Lagi pun masa filem tu dikeluarkan, ayah saya baru berusia 3 tahun. Saya tonton di RTM pun masa umur 5 tahun.

    Saya harap Encik Mustafar boleh menjawab soalan saya.

    Hormat saya,

    Oummar Nor Aman bin Othman

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Salam sdra Qummar.

      Pada perkiraan saya, tidak perlu saya menjawab soalan sdra.

      Persoalan yang sdra kemukakan memang menarik dan perlukan rungkaian seadanya.

      Apa yang perlu saya tekankan, lagu "Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi" konfirm ada, dan penyanyinya Momo.

      Dan, sdra sudah pun tahu adegannya yang dibuat dalam color itu sudah pun dipotong dari filem.

      Sebagai orang muda dan peminat filem klasik, sdra berusahalah buat kajiselidik supaya faktanya tepat.

      Saya sudah membuka langkah, langkah seterusnya sdralah yang patut lakukan.

      Dalam keadaan kesihatan saya yang ada sekarang, saya sudah tidak mampu lagi membuat kajiselidik seperti dulu.

      Silap-silap gaya, blog Filem Klasik Malaysia (FKM) ini pun akan hilang dari alam maya.

      Sdra buatlah kajiselidik, ada empat sumber untuk sdra;

      1. Jamil Sulong, tak tahulah sama ada beliau masih ingat atau tidak kerana keuzurannya.

      2. Momo, pun uzur dan sdra terpaksa pergi ke Singapura. Tak tahulah ingat atau tidak beliau lagu tu.

      3. Radio Klasik Nasional, hubungi Adibah Effendi kalau nak dengar lagu "Putus Kasih Di Semerah Padi" itu.

      4. Kassim Masdor, juga sdra terpaksa pergi ke Singapura. Ingat atau tidak beliau tak tahulah.

      Sekian, terima kasih.

      Delete
    2. Seperti Oummar Nor Aman bin Othman, saya juga belum pernah sekali pun mendengar lagu PUTUS KASEH DI-SEMERAH PADI (jodol lagu menurut ejaan lama) nyanyian Momo. Tetapi saya pernah melihat di dalam sebuah majalah (lupa namanya), poster filem Semerah Padi untuk tayangan di Mesir dengan disebut "Partly In Colour" yang mungkin merujuk kepada adegan lagu ini yang dinyanyikan oleh Saadiah dengan menggunakan suara Momo.

      - NONAMA

      Delete
    3. Mengambil masa yang agak lama juga
      Sdra Nonama menjawab soalan Sdra Qummar itu.
      Apa pun terima kasihlah.

      Delete
  5. Pak Jamil Sulong & Momo mungkin sudah terlalu uzur untuk dihubungi & mungkin juga ingatan mereka sudah tidak begitu baik. Kassim Masdor pula telah meninggalkan kita buat selama-lamanya. Pihak Radio Klasik Nasional RTM kalaupun ada rekod, pita atau CD lagu ini belum tentu dapat memastikan sama ada ia adalah salah satu lagu daripada OST dalam filem Semerah Padi. Mungkin kita boleh hubungi Encik Yusnor Ef, seorang anak didik, penulis & penerbit yang merupakan peminat tegar P. Ramlee.

    - NONAMA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. baru jumpa blog menarik ini. dah encik mustafar a.r. kata lagu "putus kaseh di-semerah padi," konfirm ada, adalah. buat apa nak dipertikaikan lagi. kalau blog finas bolehlah diragui. kepada qummar dah buat selidik ke, jangan harapkan encik mustafar saja. awak tu orang muda, kalau tak puas hati selidiklah. awak tu tak tahu, menyangah pula kepada orang yang tahu - anti-bantah (uia), sel.

      Delete