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Jakarta Post

This is a very funny country, indeed

  • Nauval Yazid


JAKARTA   /   Sun, May 2 2010   /  04:24 pm

In its third week of release, comedy satire Alangkah Lucunya Negeri Ini (How Funny This Country Is) showed a relatively slow demise in cinemas, replaced instead by upcoming Indonesian soft-porn horror and low-brow drama. The build up of word of mouth from early audiences was relatively strong, and new audiences who recently discovered the film were either drawn by their recommendations or the tongue-in-cheek title that admittedly tickles on the first encounter. Clearly a satire (from the mere mention of its title), this film recalls the glory days of not-so-old Indonesian cinema: of mixed drama and comedy, whose stories were often grounded in the struggling lives of the middle class in Jakarta, often seen laughing about the hardship. Or, in the words of film buffs, this has the markings of the work of Nya' Abbas Akub - the belated Indonesian director known for his class-conscious ...