Si Ronda

Si Ronda
Directed by Lie Tek Swie
Produced by Tan Khoen Yauw
Starring
Cinematography A Loepias
Production
company
Release date
  • 1930 (1930) (Dutch East Indies)
Country Dutch East Indies

Si Ronda is a 1930 silent film from the Dutch East Indies which was directed by Lie Tek Swie and starred Bachtiar Effendi. Based on contemporary Betawi oral tradition, it follows the exploits of a bandit, skilled in silat (traditional Malay martial arts), known as Si Ronda. In the lenong stories from which the film was derived, Ronda was often depicted as a Robin Hood type of figure. The production, now thought lost, was one of a series of martial arts films released between 1929 and 1931. Si Ronda received little coverage in the media upon its release. A second adaptation of the tale, Si Ronda Macan Betawi, was made in 1978.

Production

Si Ronda was adapted from a lenong (a Betawi oral tradition similar to a stage play) popular with ethnic Chinese and native audiences of the time. The Ronda stories follow the Betawi bandit of the same name, who is skilled at silat (traditional martial arts) and reputed to take from the rich to give to the poor. [1] The Indonesian film scholar Misbach Yusa Biran suggests that Ronda was selected for adaptation because of its potential action sequences. In the domestic cinema, such sequences had generally been inspired by American works and been well received by audiences. [2]

Similar stories to Si Ronda's include those of Si Jampang and Si Pitung; [3] these stage plays centred on extraordinary men (referred to as jago) who, though living outside the law, generally fought for the common populace. [4] Adaptations of the genre, manifested as bandit films, became popular in domestic cinema following the release of Si Tjonat by Batavia Motion Picture in 1929. This release was followed by the Wong brothers' Rampok Preanger (also 1929), and an adaptation of the Si Pitung stories in 1931. [5] Not all films in this genre, which consisted of a quarter of all domestic releases for 1929–1931, maintained the heroic qualities of the central character: the Wongs' adaptation of Si Pitung, for instance, portrayed him as a simple bandit and not the Robin Hood figure of stage. [6]

Si Ronda was directed by Lie Tek Swie and produced by Tan Khoen Yauw of Tan's Film. [7] The two had previously worked together on the company's highly profitable Njai Dasima in 1929. [8] Cinematography was handled by A. Loepias. Shot in black-and-white, [7] this silent film starred Bachtiar Effendi, a set decorator with Tan's, in his on-screen debut playing the title role. [9] It also featured Momo, an actor who had appeared in the film Njai Dasima. [10]

Other Languages
Bahasa Indonesia: Si Ronda
Bahasa Melayu: Si Ronda
Türkçe: Si Ronda