Singapore Film Locations Archive

Berdosa / Sinner (1951)

Original film title in Malay: Berdosa
English title: Sinner
Chinese title: 母女飄零

Directed by S. Ramanathan
Written by S. Ramanathan (story), S. Roomai Noor & A. R. Tompel (dialogue)
Songs and syair by Ahmad Jaafar
Produced by Malay Film Productions (Shaw Brothers)
In Malay
Cast: Yem, Neng Yatimah, Siput Sarawak, Mak Dara, S. Roomai Noor, Rokiah Jaafar

Released February 1951 (in Singapore)

Film Locations (in Singapore):
Tanjong Pagar Railway Station
Great World Cabaret
Great World or New World Amusement Park

Salmah (Siput Sarawak) seduces Osman (Yem), the titular sinful person in the film, and spreads rumours of his wife Rosnah (Neng Yatimah) having an adulterous affair with his good friend. Her actions lead to their divorce and Rosnah being chased out of her home. By then, Rosnah is already pregnant and is taken in by two kind souls – Ahmad and his wife Siti. A few months later, Rosnah gives birth to Mariam. Osman marries Salmah, who works as a dancer in a nightclub (the Great World Cabaret). He becomes suspicious of her late night revelling.

Eight years later, Mariam grows up to be an intelligent child and a talented performer. She often asks Rosnah about who her father is. On Mariam’s ninth birthday, Ahmad introduces her to Hashim, an agent of a performing band in Singapore. Hashim is convinced of Mariam’s talent and employs her. Mariam and her mother begins a new life in Singapore. (In a sequence of Shaw’s product placement in the film, Mariam is introduced to the night lights of Singapore at a Shaw-run amusement park, either the Great World at River Valley or the New World at Jalan Besar.)

Meanwhile, Osman begins to hear whisperings between Salmah and her mother that she is the cause of the divorce between him and Rosnah. Osman regrets his actions many years ago and expels Salmah and her mother. He begins his arduous search for her former wife and their child, experiencing hardship and poverty, before chancing upon Mariam’s act in a theatre.







Filming locations of Berdosa:
Tanjong Pagar Railway Station [0:36, 58:28]
Great World Cabaret [35:22]
Great World or New World Amusement Park [41:00]

Film Images:
© 1951 Malay Film Productions

19510203 Berdosa Newspaper Ads2

19510203 Berdosa Newspaper Ads1

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