Switch off what you expect to see and hear about Indonesia. Everything is fresh and new. Fasten your seat belt. Make yourself at home. This is going to be a thrilling journey through the Indonesian archipelago. And this time, you will face an Indonesia which is conceptually deeper, rather than just the physically carved, batik-printed archipelago.
Indonesia is the focus of Reel Asian’s spotlight this year. Perhaps you envision a country full of poverty and chaos, conflict and religious tensions. All that you have learned from TV might be true. But some things that might be true might also be untrue. There’s always another side to each story, a different way to see, hear, feel, say and do things. You can fight violence with violence, but you can also choose to face it peacefully, even playfully.
Because you are now free to choose to smile, even when it hurts.
Wahyu Aditya | Indonesia | 2001 | Video | 3:00 | Colour | Canadian Premiere
The hunter and the hunted. But why would you hunt an ostrich?
Born in Malang in 1980, Wahyu Aditya is an animator, director of music videos and a teacher. Although he holds an advanced diploma in interactive multimedia and animation from Australia, Aditya admits that he learned animation mostly from books and the Internet. Experimental animation and combining a lot of different elements is a favourite recipe for making his films.
Farishad Latjuba | Indonesia | 2003 | 16MM | 16:00 | Colour | World Premiere
A drug dealer and a schoolgirl are having a rendezvous in a hotel. Smuggled into the room for dessert is a strong-smelling fruit known as durian.
Born in Jakarta in 1971, Farishad Latjuba only recently started working with film, after being exposed to computer programming in the late ’90s. After graduating with a B.A. in economics from San Francisco State University, he began to explore audiovisual work. When not doing a film, he works as a web programmer. Latjuba also runs a small “kine-club”, screening various films weekly in Kemang, Jakarta. (Visit http://layarperak.com.)
Violence Against Fruits
Tintin Wulia | Indonesia | 2000 | Video | 3:00 | Colour | Canadian Premiere
Why don’t you just eat dogs instead? Relax, sit back, and enjoy the disembowelment of Diospyros Kaki right in front of your eyes. Inspired by the May 1998 Jakarta riot.
Born in Bali in 1972, Tintin Wulia has worked as an architect, a film composer and a music teacher. Working in digital media in Boston in 1996, she learned how to make tiny movies using digital video editing and decided to dedicate her talent to filmmaking. Wulia is now facilitating an animation co-production between children from different parts of the world, while also working for Minikino (http://minikino.org), a volunteer organization that holds regular screenings followed by discussion in Bali.
Lexy Rambadeta | Indonesia | 2002 | Video | 26:00 | Colour | Canadian Premiere
When the bones of the military massacre victims of March 1966 are found in Wonosobo in 2002, old wounds resurface. This documentary shows how the conflict has remained unresolved in present-day Indonesia.
A graduate of the faculty of social and political science from Gadjah Mada University, Rambadeta launched his career when he left his hometown, Yogyakarta, and joined The Alliance of Independent Journalists in 1998 in Jakarta. While fellow journalists took still pictures, Rambadeta has always been inclined to using video to convey his messages. After studying photography and film and working internationally as a journalist, he began to combine journalism with his audio-visual skills to produce captivating documentaries. In 2001, he established Off Stream (http://offstream.net) – “the voice of the voiceless” – a support body for Indonesian independent documentary filmmakers in Jakarta.
A Very Slow Breakfast
Edwin | Indonesia | 2002 | 16MM | 6:00 | Colour | World Premiere | Director in attendance
Morning. Time for breakfast for the family, and time to search for the meaning of being a family.
Born in Surabaya in 1978, Edwin studied graphic design (1999) in his hometown before moving on to the Jakarta Institute of the Arts, where he is studying film directing. He believes that short film has a unique discourse and is not only a stepping-stone to feature film. In his short-film experiments Edwin constantly provokes his audience by reflecting on the obsolete, established values of “Indonesia” – showing a society in transition, challenging old myths and dogmas.
Dennis Adishwara | Indonesia | 2002 | Video | 27:00 | Colour | Canadian Premiere
El Meler knows the ins and outs of Haji Subuh Street. One day, a fearless person appears and challenges him to a fight.
Adishwara, now a broadcasting student at the University of Indonesia, Jakarta, made his acting debut a few years back in a short DV film made by his high school friends. Since then, Adishwara has directed two action shorts, with his brother and neighbours as cast and crew. With simple equipment he has managed to re-create entertaining effects often seen in mainstream action movies. Besides his recent appearance in a bigger production – as a supporting actor in the popular teenage feature Ada Apa Dengan Cinta? (What’s with Love?), 2002 – Adishwara is also planning to make his own feature on DV.
Tintin Wulia | Indonesia | 2003 | Video | 5:00 | Colour | World Premiere
Yes, sir, everything’s OK. We have lost track of the human scale, but everything is definitely OK.