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Jakarta Post

Film, music and food mark the start of Indonesian Film Month

  • Makbul Mubarak

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Fri, February 28, 2014   /  11:02 am
Film, music and food  mark the start of Indonesian Film Month

'€˜Postcards from the Zoo'€™: This magical-realism drama with Nicholas Saputra was the first Indonesian film considered in the main section of the Berlinale. Courtesy of Babibutafilms

To celebrate Indonesian National Film Month, which starts on Saturday, '€œFilm Musik Makan'€ (Film Music Food) will be held at the Goethe-Institut in Menteng, Central Jakarta, from March 1 to 3.

The event has been organized by Babibutafilms, an independent production house in Jakarta. The company will screen a selection of its works, including the first feature it produced, auteur director Edwin'€™s Blind Pig Who Wants to Fly ( 2008 ), and the premiere of their most recent project, Rocket Rain, produced in 2013.

Aside from film screenings, the event will also include performances by alternative musicians, including sets from the band Jirapah, who contributed to the score of Rocket Rain, and indie music veterans White Shoes and the Couples Company.

According to Babibutafilms producer Meiske '€œDede'€ Taurisia, the event is an experiment for bands to share the stage with movies, meaning that music fans will share the venue with cinephiles.

'€œJakarta has a huge crowd of music lovers. Why don'€™t we try to do the same with the film lovers?'€ Dede said in Jakarta on Monday.

Babibutafilms is also experimenting with holding an alternative film event where the tickets are not free. Tickets for the two-day event cost Rp 200,000 (US$17).

Dede says that alternative film screenings in Jakarta have usually been free, as many artists have been afraid that audiences would not pay to see films with unfamiliar styles and stories.

For the event, Dede wants to stress that any film, no matter how small its budget, is a collective form of art that is impossible to do without money. '€œIt is less important for us to have many people coming compared to having people who are really willing to see the films and contribute to the creative survival of its makers.'€

'€œTo stress film as a cultural product doesn'€™t mean we are permitted to think that its making was done without capital,'€ Dede said.

Money raised from the screenings will go to fund screenings for Babibutafilms throughout Indonesia in the upcoming months, Dede said. '€œWe issue different ticket prices in every place depending on the financial capacity of the potential audiences. In 2013, the screening of our film in Kupang cost only Rp 5,000 a person. We subsidized the screening with the money we collected from our screening in Jakarta.'€

Among the films to be screened this weekend is Edwin'€™s Postcards from the Zoo, which has traveled to a host film festivals since its release. It was also the first Indonesian film to be listed in the main competition section of Berlin Film Festival.

Also on the schedule is a screening of Edwin'€™s most recent short, Someone'€™s Wife in the Boat of Someone'€™s Husband, which screened at the International Festival Film Rotterdam earlier this year.

The film adapts a short story by acclaimed Indonesian author Seno Gumira Ajidarma.

The event will also mark the premiere of the company'€™s latest project Rocket Rain, the first feature directed by the well video artist Anggun Priambodo. The film touches on the issues of divorce in contemporary Indonesia through absurd jokes and nonsensical visual composition.

Other shorts to be screened include the Clermont-Ferrand Film Festival contender Fitri, directed by Sidi Saleh, which tells the story of a prostitute forced to work on the night before Lebaran by her pimp.

Also to be shown is Vulgar, the first directorial outing of actress Ladya Cheryl, who starred in Edwin'€™s Postcards and Blind Pig.

Sidi and Ladya are expected to be on hand for the screenings.

Aside from film screenings, there Babibutafilms will also offer a workshop on processing 16 millimeter film on March 3 at the National Film Company (PFN) hosted by Edwin.

'€œWe are about to reintroduce the analog film processing to today'€™s digital generation by using the outstanding facilities at PFN,'€ Edwin said.

For more information, go to or call 081297911364.