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Wiji Thukul film premieres across the nation

Severianus Endi

The Jakarta Post

Pontianak, West Kalimantan  /  Thu, January 19, 2017  /  05:21 pm
Wiji Thukul film premieres across the nation

Indonesian poet Wiji Thukul (Gunawan Maryanto) in one of the scenes of 'Istirahatlah Kata-Kata'. (Youtube/File)

A movie about missing activist-cum-poet Wiji Thukul, Istirahatlah Kata Kata (Solo, Solitude), was screened for the first time in 14 cities on Thursday, including in Pontianak, where most of the movie was shot.

The movie tells the story of the period when Wiji had fled from his hometown of Surakarta, Central Java, to Pontianak, West Kalimantan, in 1996. The movie depicts Wiji’s loneliness, isolation, and his fear of being caught by the authorities in Pontianak, while depending on his friends’ generosity to stay alive.

(Read also: Wiji Thukul biopic reveals human side of missing poet)

Wiji hid in Pontianak for about eight months, moving houses and changing his name. A few months before the end of the New Order in May 1998, Wiji went missing and until now he has not been found.

Director Yosep Anggi Noen said during the premiere in Pontianak that he wanted the movie to serve as a reminder for the young generation about missing activists.

“The young generation has made an attempt to record and remember Wiji Thukul’s fight through this movie. His role in toppling the New Order regime and bringing forth the era of democracy was important. This freedom is the result of the fight of Wiji and other activists,” Yosep said.

Teater Garasi actor Gunawan Maryanto, himself an award winning poet, played Wiji in the movie.

Scenes of the movie capture rural areas of Pontianak, with dirt roads, lush scenery and the iconic Kapuas River. (evi)


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