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”Dekada 70” by Lualhati Bautista

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  • Pages: 3
  • Word count: 747
  • Category: Family

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Dekada 70 is one of the best novel of Lualhati Bautista, one of the best writer in the Philippines and also an award winning writer for her purposeful writings, that talks about not only the life of people during the Marcos regime but also the role of each member in the family. We can say that this novel and the film of Chito S. Roño tell us the story of this decade in the 70′s in the form of facts, figures, opinionated articles, dates, and timelines. The direction of director Chito S. Roño has the family as a center of the effect of Martial Law. With a talented cast of convincing actors and actresses, their home would become to the viewer a microcosm of the country as a whole. In fact it is in the home of the Bartolome family where most of the movie actually takes place. And it is in this home viewers are taken for a brief ride through this tumultuous time in Philippine history.

The wife Amanda (Vilma Santos) and Julian (Christopher Deleon) belongs to a middle class couple with an ideological view, who must deal with raising their children, five boys – Jules (Piolo Pascual), Isagani (Carlos Agassi), Emmanuel (Marvin Agustin), Jason (Danilo Barrios) and Bingo (John Sace) in a way wherein passion, fear, unrest and social chaos will be seen. To accept the differences of the sibling’s ideologies and views will be the greatest mission of Julian, as a father faces the painful dissent of his children, to Amanda, a mother’s love will prove to be the most resonant in the unfolding of this family’s tale and to awaken her own needs, as she embarks on a journey of discovery to realize who she is as a wife, a mother, a woman and a Filipino.

My reaction in this film really concerns about Amanda for she is the most oppressed and the most affected among all the characters in the film. We can say that she’s domestic in nature because she’s just staying inside their homes and taking care of their children. The most oppressed part for her, I think, is when Julian’s friend visited them and suddenly when she try to answer or be part of the conversation, as if, Julian’s friends were just “napipilitan” to answer her or they are just respecting her as a wife of Julian. As if she is just another maid in their house. She isn’t entitled to her decision and if she will do something, she really needs to consult it first to her husband. I noticed that almost all of the decisions in their house were from her husband.

We can say that the film was from a feminist point of view or stand on what should be the role of the woman in the house, in society and in the nation. Why is her husband’s ego so high that if he would let Amanda find job, I’m sure that his ego will not decrease at any rate? I mean, he is so unfair. Why not give Amanda a chance; nothing will lose if he’ll let Amanda do what she wanted. For Julian, being a father doesn’t mean that all the decisions in your family should come from you because you don’t own all the things in this world. You can’t decide what’s best for everyone. And lastly, everyone should be given a chance to do what they wanted to do because things that will make you contented sometimes be searched.

To Lualhati Bautista and Chito S. Roño, I salute you. I believe in this quote, “My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.” by George Washington because all I am and all I have is hers. I hope all of us will value the entire mother in the world and don’t forget that being men doesn’t mean you’re the best and you should decide for all because sometimes, women are much good at decision-making. We should accept that our decisions are not always right and what we think is the best for everyone is bad for everybody. I think my recommendation here is that, all should be given their freedom to choose their life and to live with their chosen life because no one knows us better than ourselves.

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