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Film / Alkitrang Dugo

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"Kahit na tayo'y malayo sa inalkitrang kalye ng Maynila, dito natin mapapatunayang tao pa rin tayo."
("Although we're far from the asphalt [paved] roads of Manila, here we prove that we are still human.")

Alkitrang Dugo (literally Asphalt Blood) is a 1975 Filipino survival film, very loosely based on, or rather as the credits put it, Inspired by… the British novel Lord of the Flies by William Golding. One of the main differences from the original work is turning the all-boy main characters into boys and girls, and aging them up from children to adolescents, hence there are brief moments of romantic interactions between some of the teen-aged survivors.

A team of adolescent athletes is stranded in an uninhabited island after their plane crashed. With their coach and pilots dead, the complex assortment of young students from both public and private schools are left on their own to survive. But crisis draws out natural leaders like Luis who thinks of organizing and putting an order in their situation. On the other hand, there will also always be the envious and mutinous opposition who will seek to divide the group. While Luis thinks of ways for their survival, Andy strives to influence the others towards indolence and savagery.

Provides examples of:

  • The '70s: Gee, with the characters sporting wide lapels and bell-bottoms despite it being their school uniform, you think?
  • Adaptation Name Change: Everybody is given different names, especially with the addition of female characters now and the setting of the movie. Some characters however, are obvious counterparts to the original: Luis to Ralph, Andy to Jack, and Nilo to Piggy.
  • Adaptational Badass: This movie's version of Piggy (Nilo) is able to stand up more on his own without having Ralph (Luis) to come to his aid, and when some of the students tease him, he acts more annoyed than anything. Although this doesn't stop him from dying, the circumstances surrounding his death is more due to someone's fatal error than anything malicious.
  • Adaptational Diversity: Instead of male characters from an all-boys school, there are also female characters since the students apparently attend a co-ed school. A female character named Clarita plays a major role in keeping things from spiraling down any further by acting as Luis's Morality Chain and being his only devoted follower throughout the film.
  • Adaptational Nationality: Naturally, the kids are Filipino to account for the setting being changed to an uninhabited Philippine island.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: The kids in here aren't as horrible as the boys from the original, and even though Andy does become something of a bloodthirsty, unstable barbarian during the slaughtering of the boar and his attempt to hunt down Luis and Clarita who he may wanted to kill, he was still nowhere near as how evil Jack became in the book. In the end, the remaining students who were loyal to him began beating him when they find out that he was involved in the deaths of Angelo and Nilo, which he tried to justify were both accidents. When the boat finally comes to rescue them and the injured Andy tries to stand up, Luis helps him.
    • Andy's henchmen also do not murder their Piggy counterpart, who instead died of an accident as mentioned above.
  • Adaptational Villainy: The kids who were on Luis's side, except for Clarita, eventually side with Andy including Nilo, the movie's Piggy who is seen being fanned and lavished with food by some students as if he was a king while the teens were dancing around in excessive merriment. This is still sort of downplayed in that they never killed anyone (if you don't count the pig) and Andy was the only one who had blood on his hands by the end of the film.
  • Adaptational Wimp: In contrast to the Adaptational Badass of Piggy (see above), this movie's version of Jack (Andy) is shorter, skinnier, and is easily overpowered by the movie's version of Ralph though he still has a fiery temper of his own. The only time he is seen beating someone else is because they are smaller than him, forcing Luis to stop him.
  • Adapted Out: The theories about a beast that might be lurking in the island is never discussed.
  • Adults Are Useless: Well...they died in the crash after all, as the kids later find out.
  • Age Lift: The children from the original are now teenagers, possibly to appease the censors since children being forced to do savage acts would be deemed too controversial.
  • Blow That Horn: At the start of the film, Nilo finds the conch shell which Luis uses to signal for the students to gather around. This shell also does not shatter unlike in the book, which might also explain why they fared better than the boys and did not descend into full savagery or immorality by the end of the film.
  • Chromosome Casting: Averted. This one features male and female students who were on their way to compete in an athletic meet.
  • Deserted Island: Apart from a few animals like bugs, snakes, a wild boar and the like.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: A boat finally comes to the rescue while the students jump for joy at the beach. What differs this from the very bittersweet ending of the original is nobody really dwells on the loss of innocence nor the deaths of the two fellow students beyond being furious at Andy for having something to do with them.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Angelo accidentally drops a stone on Andy causing him to react violently and beat him senseless, thus foreshadowing his violent nature which would shape the tone of the film as the story goes on.
  • Film of the Book: Albeit one that takes many liberties from the source material.
  • Gorn: The wild boar that the kids slaughtered is shown to be quite graphic, chanting every time they rip into its flesh.
  • Gory Deadly Overkill Title of Fatal Death: Alkitrang Dugo translates to "Asphalt Blood". Specifically, it's the description of blood that has a very dark red color, almost to the point of looking black, hence its comparison to tar or asphalt.
  • Gratuitous English: The characters speak in Taglish, considering their ages, and also use a lot of slang. At one point, they sing some English pop songs as some type of improvised tribal musical performance.
  • Half-Hearted Henchman: The two guys of Andy's hunting group eventually out his crimes of killing Angelo and Nilo when the mob was confronted by Luis. This causes his own followers to turn against him and start beating him. They might've killed him if not for the Deus ex Machina coming just in time.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Andy's group try to set fire to the cave that Luis and Clarita were hiding in by burning some brambles near the entrance only for the fire to spread towards them instead, burning their clothes as a result and forcing them to retreat, thus giving the chance for Luis and Clarita to escape.
  • A House Divided: Of course, like the book, the group eventually splits with a few kids considering the more organized but strict Luis as their leader and the more fun-loving but irresponsible Andy as the other. Eventually, some of the kids that chose Luis defected to Andy's side during the pig slaughtering scene, with only Clarita remaining loyal to him.
  • Humans Are Bastards: Luis's speech about how they will remain "human" in spite of their circumstances implies that the inherent cruelty within themselves causing them to turn against each other is as human as they come.
  • Inspired by…: The credits state it as this. Naturally, this results in the movie deviating greatly from the book, with only the basic premise remaining the same.
  • Kill the Cutie: Angelo, the one who plays the flute, is killed due to being accidentally speared in the chest by Andy's hunting group. Nilo, the movie's Piggy counterpart, dies after falling into a ravine and was later revealed to have been speared in the leg by Andy, presumably by accident as well, causing him to fall into said ravine.
  • Killed Offscreen: Nilo, whose body was only discovered to have fallen into a ravine with his glasses hanging by a branch.
  • Lighter and Softer: The atrocities that happen in the film are quite tame compared to the book and its 1990 American adaptation. And the murders that do happen were more or less accidental, instead of them being out of mass hysteria or premeditated.
  • Madness Mantra: The book's "Kill the beast! Cut his throat! Spill his blood!" is translated into Tagalog as well as additional lyrics that describe graphic mutilations of the boar they killed. They also chant this while hunting down Luis and Clarita.
  • Modesty Shorts: The female students are seen wearing these instead of panties.
  • Morality Chain: Clarita is this to Luis, often holding him back when he acts violently towards Andy and preventing him from falling to the group's savageness in general.
  • Murder by Mistake: Angelo and Nilo were both mistaken for wild animals, and were accidentally speared by Andy's hunting group as a result.
  • No Hugging, No Kissing: Some mild flirting ensues between the male and female survivors given that they were teens, but they never show any overt gestures of affection towards each other beyond teasing and talking.
  • The Not-Love Interest: Clarita's role related to Luis is ambiguous as to whether she's just a close friend or girlfriend. The two are the only ones not seen flirting with each other unlike the other students, but they remain very close throughout the film with Clarita being the only one remaining loyal to Luis as the group spirals down into disorder. And if she was his girlfriend, it's likely that it was an established relationship.
  • Only Sane Man: Luis and Clarita are the only ones who weren't influenced by Andy's savage behavior.
  • Precision F-Strike: Andy exclaims "anak ng shet" (son of a shit) after being fed up with Luis ordering him around.
  • Teenage Wasteland: The stranded teenagers are trapped in the island with one in favor of an organized leadership and one in favor of an adult-free no rules paradise, wedging a divide between the two groups who have chosen their side.
  • Title Drop: Not so much an exact title drop but rather a reference to it. The Madness Mantra which was translated directly from English also adds some new words, one of them being "dugong alkitran" (blood of asphalt).