JOSE RIZAL The movie tells the life story of Jose Rizal, the national hero of the Philippines. It covers his life from his childhood to his execution at the hands of the Spanish forces occupying the Philippines in the late 19th century. We are also thrown into the world of Rizal’s novels. So we get a glimpse of how he viewed Filipino society under the Spanish heal. One note, this movie is not for the faint of heart. There are graphic depictions of violence and even torture. The opening few scenes depict some episodes from Rizal’s novels. In one a Catholic priest rapes a Filipina. I guess I now know where the Mestizo (i. . , mixed blood) class came from in the Philippines. In the other scene a Catholic priest beats a child for alleged stealing. Strong stuff, and it made me wonder how the Catholic Church could possibly retain any power in the country, if this is what the national hero thought about it. The movie introduces us to the life of subjugation of the Filipino people under the rule of the Spanish friars. From the execution of three Filipino priests in 1872 for alleged subversion to the harsh and unequal treatment of Filipino students in the schools, this film is a stinging indictment of Spanish colonial rule in the Philippines.
We see scenes both from Rizal’s actual life but also from his imagination. As a young man, Jose is sent to study in Spain. This is a plan hatched by his brother Paciano. Jose will write and do everything in his power to bring to the attention of the world the abuses of Spanish power in the Philippines, while Paciano will protect the Rizal family at home and keep up the struggle against Spanish rule. Jose excels in his studies as a medical student at Madrid University and eventually earns a degree as an ophthalmic surgeon.
Don’t waste your time!
Order your assignment!
Meantime, he becomes involved with a group of radical Filipino students who also seek to end the Spanish abuses in their country. He eventually has a falling out with the student group as he realizes that the real struggle is taking place back home. He decides to return to the Philippines. He is arrested by the Spanish authorities upon his return to the Philippines in 1892. He is sent to Dapitan in Mindanao where the Spanish authorities can keep a watchful eye on him. It is there that he meets the love of his life, Josephine Bracken, although the movie does not devote much attention to this love affair.
When a rebellion breaks out in 1896 the Spanish governor orders that Rizal be moved to the prison in Manila. It is here that Rizal is introduced to Luis Taviel who has been appointed to defend him at his trial. Taviel is a Spanish officer who at first mistrusts Rizal and views him as a dangerous revolutionary. Most of the movie takes place in Rizal’s prison cell and involves Taviel confronting him about his life. There are frequent flashbacks but some of them are flashbacks to his novels, so it is sometimes hard to keep the order clear. Eventually Taviel learns to respect Rizal and he decides to do his best job in defending him.
But it is to no avail. The evil head of the Franciscan order in Manila arranges for a new governor to take over control of the Philippines. The new governor promptly orders a show trial where the outcome has already been decided. Rizal must die. Despite his best efforts, Taviel cannot save Rizal from his fate. The verdict is reached and the execution date is set for December 30, 1896. Taviel admits to Rizal that he is ashamed to be a Spaniard. In what is the most bizarre scene of the movie, on the night before his execution, Rizal is confronted by his own character Simoun from his novel.
Simoun urges Rizal to rewrite him so that his mission can be for a higher purpose. And so in his final work, Rizal pens “Mi Ultimo Adios” knowing full well that his death will light the torch of the Filipino Revolution. The final few scenes show Rizal being led out to the execution ground. He requests to face the firing squad but he is denied. The Spanish want to shoot him in the back as a traitor. But as he is shot full of bullets he manages to turn as he falls so that he lands facing the sky. I must tell you that my wife was crying like a baby during this scene and she’s seen the movie twice.
I must also admit that I had some moisture in my eyes too. I was also muttering to myself “Spanish Bastards! Spanish Bastards! “. This is by far the best Filipino movie that I have seen so far. I would urge anyone reading this who likes movies, to either rent it or buy it. One note, this is a rather long movie so you might want to see it over two nights. The copy I have comes on 2 video cassettes. THE MISSION In simplest terms, The Mission is a fictionalized account of a historical event that was both an atrocity and a tragedy. Here are the background events, as I understand them.
In 1750 Spain and Portugal signed a treaty renegotiating a borderline between Spanish and Portuguese territories in South America, with Portugal taking control of a previously Spanish region on the Paraguay River. In this region were a number of mission communities, founded by the Society of Jesus, where thousands of native Guarani converts lived. These missions (called “reducciones” or “reductions”) were not simply spiritual centers, but thriving economic communities where converts worked together and prospered. The Jesuit missionaries, who were ardent champions of the Pope, strongly opposed slavery, an institution long condemned by Rome.
The Vatican had particularly condemned the enslavement of the newly discovered peoples of the Americas; but social acceptance of this teaching (as of the Church’s condemnations of dueling in the nineteenth century or of abortion today) was limited and partial. Spain had anti-slavery laws, but Portugal didn’t; and naturally the Guarani ??? who even under the Spanish administration were already being covertly hunted by Portuguese slavers with the tacit support of opportunistic Spanish governors ??? deeply resented the transfer of power.
Once the Spanish withdrew, the only protection remaining to the Guarani would be the Jesuit reducciones. The Portuguese, of course, wished to see the missionaries depart from the region together with the Spanish civil authority. In spite of this, the Jesuit missions might possibly have been able to remain in the new Portuguese territories with Vatican support. However, some ecclesiastical officials apparently found this politically inexpedient. Because of the Jesuits’ opposition to slavery and their strong defense of the papacy, the Order was already a political target in some European countries.
If the missions succeeded in openly thwarting the Portuguese in South America, some officials feared that the Portuguese government would retaliate by expelling the Jesuits from Portugal, leading to similar setbacks throughout Europe. Thus, in the name of protecting the Order on the Continent, the missionaries were ordered to abandon the reducciones and send their converts back to their native ways of life. (Ironically, both the ecclesiastical effort to protect the Society of Jesus, and the Portuguese effort to overcome the Jesuit agenda, eventually failed.
Despite the withdrawal from South America, the Jesuits were expelled from Portugal, and within 25 years the order had been officially suppressed by the Vatican. On the other hand, the disputed territories were soon returned to Spanish control; and ultimately slavery was abolished throughout the entire region, and the Guarani slaves emancipated. ) The Mission tells the story of one company of missionaries who defy the order to leave their mission, defending the right of their converts to remain in their new home.
Some of these priests, led by a novice named Mendoza (De Niro), even actively lead the Guarani in guerrilla warfare against the Portuguese forces who eventually arrive to expel them ??? despite bitter opposition from their own leader, Fr. Gabriel (Irons), who insists on a path of peaceful disobedience and spiritual devotion. Inevitably, “neither approach is effective”, as Ebert sees it; and the conclusion is as tragic as it is inexorable. THE MISSION The Mission was absolutely one of the best films I have seen and I regret not having the privilege of watching this beforehand.
But I found myself emotionally devastated after seeing this film the first time. The film packs a punch in its contrast between the beauty of nature and human self-sacrifice on the one hand and the depths of human self-interest and ruthlessness on the other. Its theme is as relevant today as it was in the 1600s – what are the consequences of my actions, and what price must be paid by me and by others as a result? The film depicts several characters with whose choices the viewer can identify – the missionary, the repentant killer, the papal legate – and gives no easy answers to the choices that confront them.
But the fact that there are no easy answers doesn’t let them off the hook. In the end, they all have to take responsibility for what they do or fail to do. There are many great movies but The Mission is in a class of its own. It belongs to a select group of films which are able to penetrate our lives and change us forever. The powerful themes of forgiveness, love, innocence, guilt, freedom, and human nature are presented against a backdrop of incredible scenery. At first glance The Mission is a story about a political struggle. Upon closer examination it is no less than divine revelation about the nature of the human heart.
Rarely does a film have all the elements in film making all come together so perfectly. I can honestly say that this is THE BEST film I have ever seen, and the most powerful film I have seen. I always said that some films are ‘one’ of the best, but I can truly say that this is THE Best film I have seen. The cinematography is excellent, excellent casts, and an awesome score. Moreover, the movie has extended violent ending, and sometimes is shocking in that finale. But what made this film even more impacting was the fact that it was based on true accounts.
So the question arises: How could we as humans be so brutal towards others who have every right to freedom and happiness? A must see film that will open your eyes to the harsh reality of slavery and those who desperately fought for their rights. Though they lost the battle, their cry for equality lives within the chronicles of time. The actors played a wonderful role to tell the story of a torn civilization. In addition, this movie has many excellent features. It contains wonderful camera work in breathtaking scenery, an impressive score, and generally good performances.
All these things make the film quite powerful, and it can really draw the viewer in. But there are a number of historical inaccuracies. This is quite important, because the film begins with the words “This is a true story that actually took place in 1750. ” The movie’s portrayal of the Indians, and their relationship to the missionaries, has been attacked by historians, among other aspects. REACTION PAPERS In SOCIAL SCIANCE 4 Submitted to: Mr. Raymund Canezares Instructor Submitted by: James Curt Maribojoc BSIT-2a REACTION PAPER In Social Science 4 Submitted by: Dawn B. Portugaliza BSIT-3b Submitted to: Mr. Raymund Canezares Instructor