Hang Tuah (film)

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Hang Tuah
The Legend of Hang Tuah
Directed by Phani Majumdar
Written by MC ff.Sheppard (Original Story),Jamil Sulong Dialog-(Original Story),Phani Majumdar (Screenplay)
Starring P. Ramlee
Ahmad Mahmood
Nordin Ahmad
Music by P. Ramlee
Cinematography NB Vasudev
Distributed by Malay Film Production Ltd
Release dates
Country Singapore
Language Malay

Hang Tuah (The Legend of Hang Tuah) is a 1959 Malay feature film directed by Phani Majumdar. It is the first Malay film to be fully shot in Eastman colour film. It was released to public on 28 January 1956. The film was based on the legendary Admiral Hang Tuah of Malacca and his 4 sworn brothers; Hang Jebat, Hang Kasturi, Hang Lekir and Hang Lekiu. This film has received 'Best Musical Score' award at the 3rd Asian Film Festival in Hong Kong in 1956 and an official screening at 7th Berlin International Film Festival in 1957, where it was nominated for the Golden Bear.[1]


Hang Tuah and four of his best friends, Hang Jebat, Hang Kasturi, Hang Lekir and Hang Lekiu, while still teenagers have shown their heroism beating the pirates at sea. And as adults, as proposed by Hang Tuah, they went to Mount Ledang to study with Tok Guru Adi.

As a student, Hang Tuah met a native girl, Melor. In his meeting with Hang Tuah, Melor had shown love and affection towards Hang Tuah and vice versa.

After completing his studies and with sufficient knowledge, Hang Tuah and his four friends return to Malacca and with a difficult parting done, Hang Tuah promises to wait for Melor if she comes looking for him in Malacca later.

In Malacca, Hang Tuah, Hang Jebat, Hang Kasturi, Hang Lekir and Hang Lekiu saves the life of the Bendahara (Minister) Dato' Tun Perak from an angry mob when he was on his way for an audience with Sultan Mansur Shah - the ruler of Malacca.

Following the courage shown in front of the eyes of the Tun Perak himself, Hang Tuah and his four comrades are appointed by the Sultan of Malacca as warriors, garnering envy from some state dignitaries including Tun Ali.

Shortly after the appointment, the Sultan of Malacca leaves for Majapahit to marry Raden Mas Ayu and he is accompanied by Hang Tuah and his friends. There, in a ceremony, their strength is challenged by a renowned Majapahit warrior, Taming Sari.

Having fought tooth and nail with Taming Sari, Hang Tuah demonstrated his expertise, proving his weapon can also beat Taming Sari's when Hang Tuah knew Taming Sari's strength lies in his weapon.

With Taming Sari's death, his magic keris is presented to Hang Tuah which increases the latter's power and strength.

After some time later, Sultan Mansur Shah expresses his disappointment in being unable to marry Tun Teja because she was engaged to Megat Panji Alam. And to redeem her for the Sultan of Malacca, Hang Tuah secretly goes to Gujarat with the aim of bringing Tun Teja back.

Before Hang Tuah leaves Malacca, Melor comes in search of him. But Melor is caught when she runs into Tun Ali and Pateh Karma Wijaya. She is released by tricking them into thinking she is a handmaiden.

In Pahang, with Hang Tuah ruse succeeding in courting Tun Tijah, she breaks off the marriage to Megat Panji Alam. But on the ship, Hang Tuah states the fact that he came to Gujarat just to bring Tun Teja to Malacca to marry the Sultan. Tun Teja is disappointed but willing to sacrifice for her love to Hang Tuah.

Hang Tuah is caught between his loyalty to the Sultan and his love for Melor, since the latter has become a palace handmaiden and belongs to the Sultan.

However, on persuasion Dang Rani (on command Tun Ali and Pateh Karma Wijaya) finally agreed to meet Melor. This meeting consequently, was witnessed by the Sultan as planned by Tun Ali and Pateh Karma Wijaya. Upon witnessing this, the Sultan ordered for the execution of Hang Tuah as being in close relation to a palace handmaiden is an act of treason according to palace laws.

When Hang Tuah is gone, his sacred kris (Taming Sari) is presented to the Sultan of Malacca who then awarded it to Hang Jebat, now assigned to take the place of Hang Tuah. However, Hang Jebat considers the Sultan's punishment as unfair given that there is not enough proof to support claims of Tuah's wrongdoing. Thus, he vows to avenge his best friend.

In a ceremony celebrating the birthday of Pateh Karma Wijaya, Melor decides to avenge Tuah's death by killing Pateh Karma Wijaya with a kerambit hidden in her hair bun during a dance performed for him. However, Melor is also killed by a spear thrown by a guard.

Hang Jebat goes ahead with plans to avenge the death of Hang Tuah even with the opposition of Hang Kasturi, Hang Lekir and Hang Lekiu. Hang Jebat goes on a rampage in the Sultan's palace causing many casualties. Due to that, the Sultan of Malacca had to flee leaving the castle and settle in the home of Bendahara (Minister) Dato' Tun Perak.

Sultan of Melaka voices his anger and shame as not one of his ministers and admirals dared to stand up to Hang Jebat. The Sultan then expresses his regret on ordering the execution of Hang Tuah as he may be the only one able to match Jebat's skills in combat. Upon hearing this, Bendahara Tun Perak exposes the secret that he did not kill Hang Tuah as according to the sultan's order but instead Hang Tuah is kept hidden in a prison cell. Immediately, the sultan ordered Hang Tuah be brought to him and he is to be given pardon.

Hang Tuah was brought by Bendahara (Minister) Dato' Tun Perak for an audience with the Sultan. For the task of killing Jebat, Hang Tuah requests the magical kris Taming Sari be returned to him in which the sultan regretfully replied that the keris has been given to Hang Jebat.

Instead, the Sultan of Melaka offers his inheritance kris to Hang Tuah. However, Hang Tuah humbly expressed to the Sultan that with the heirloom kris he will not be able to hurt Jebat wielding the magical Taming Sari, much less kill him.

Hang Tuah then proceed to the Sultan's palace where Hang Jebat is resting. Standing in front of the palace, Tuah challenges Jebat to a fight. Hearing there is such a person who dare to challenge him Jebat looks out the window only to be shocked seeing it is Tuah who has came. Trying to persuade his best friend, Jebat swears that he is only doing this out of loyalty to Tuah and avenge the mistreatment given to him by the Sultan. But Hang Tuah is not to be dissuaded and insists on killing Jebat. Reluctantly, Jebat allows his once good friend to come up to the palace and fight with him.

As the fight goes on Hang Tuah is unable to hurt Hang Jebat with the Taming Sari in his possession. Seeing how Tuah is so determined to kill him, Jebat willlingly trades keris with Tuah and resumes their fight. This time, Hang Tuah is able to stab Hang Jebat who then dies in Tuah's arms.

After this event, Sultan Mansur Syah awards Hang Tuah with the title of Laksamana. As the whole of malacca celebrates the inauguration of Tuah as Laksamana, Tuah sits at home saddened about both Melor and Jebat meeting their demise for avenging him while he is still alive. Hang Tuah then questions himself on whether he is right for his utmost loyalty to the Sultan or is Jebat right for standing up to an unjust Sultan.


  • P Ramlee as Hang Tuah
  • Ahmad Mahmood as Hang Jebat
  • Saadiah as Melor
  • Nordin Ahmad as Hang Kasturi
  • S.Shamsudin as Hang Lekir
  • Aziz Sattar as Hang Lekiu
  • Haji Mahdi as Sultan Mansur Syah
  • Zaiton as Tun Teja
  • Daeng Idris as Dato' Bendahara Tun Perak
  • Udo Omar as Dato' Tun Ali
  • S. Kadarisman as Pateh Karma Wijaya
  • Siti Tanjung Perak as Mak Tuah


  • Berkorban Apa Saja
  • Joget Tari Lenggang

Famous quotes from the Film[edit]

  • "Raja Adil Raja Disembah,Raja Zalim Raja Disanggah" ("A fair king is a ruler to be obeyed, a cruel king is a despot to be revolted")
  • "Takkan Melayu Hilang di Dunia" ("Never shall the Malay race vanish from the face of the Earth")-This quote would later become a famous rallying cry for Malay nationalism.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Awards IMDB

External links[edit]