Festival Film Dokumenter 2012: Day Five.

by celo

Yay, so finally I can manage to make it through the fifth day of FFD Jogja 2012. It may just another blog post, but it’s a leap for humanity :blush: No kidding, I’m that type of guy who love procrastination so much I can’t finish something. But with this post, this very post, I prove to the whole world that I can finish my report for FFD even though it takes me a lot of time. Yeah, a very good procrastinator I am.

I planned watched three documentaries that day. Well, there’s only three screenings that day because for the closing ceremony at the end of the day. It was blazing, full of fun and such. So, what are you waiting for?

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The first documentary I watched that day was Sound of Old Room, a 72 minutes documentary directed by Sandeep Ray about a poet, Sarthak, and his life in his house where he lived for over twenty years. He struggled to be a poet, he did everything he could including abandoned his class to meet publisher. The documentary, unfortunately, didn’t dig so much about the issue so I just sat there watching how Sarthak lived his life. His issue with alcohol and how he met the girl of his life. One thing I could learn from the documentary was this personal thingy that being a poet in Calcutta is not easy, and that you have to find a good publisher too even though the indie one.

Reading the title, I thought I’ll watch about the house—or the room, whatsoever. Apparently, the house was not the main issue in this documentary. Speaking about technique, I’m not pretty sure, there was so much shaky camera in a dim light. I don’t know if it’s good or not but pretty much that’s all.

Anyway, in the end Shartak read one of his poetry to a crowd gathered. Personally—I’m not trying to offense someone but yes, this one will be very subjective—i don’t think it’s a good poetry😥

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Didn’t get lucky with the first screening of the day, I decided to linger around watching Persona. It’s a 75 minutes documentary tagged under Docs on Stage category, which means a documentary about stage performance. This one told about Rita Matu Mona, a senior theatre actress in Teater Koma. It was not only about her performance and such, the documentary also filmed about her personal life and her struggling in theater life. Actually I missed the first minutes but over all, I enjoyed this one.

I played theater at High School, so yes, this review will be a bit biased. But, trying as much as I could to be objective, Rita Matu Mona has a very strong character that you’ll need in theater life. Very dedicated mother who well-supported by her friends and family. She is a very good actress and Persona showed us that she seemed like pouring her whole life into this world. She told it there that, every time she walked out the theater life, she couldn’t make it long😆 a day or two, and she’ll be there again. Na’ah, I think it’s a good point, that you can’t walk out your passion. It’s like you’ll keep doing that or die trying to getting out. Is it a good documentary? I don’t know. Is it a good story to tell? Yes, it is.

There was something disappointed about her, tho. From a feminist perspective, I think that Rita Matu Mona was underestimating herself just because she’s a woman. With her dedication and such, I don’t think she should be. Being a woman doesn’t mean you can’t live alone and live the life you want. Well, that’s all.

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For the last screening of FFD 2012, I picked Tondo Beloved and damn it was a very good documentary with a very strong issue to be filmed. A 74 minutes documentary directed by Jewel Marahan from Philippines about, uhm, how do I explain it…, poor live of a poor family in slum area in Philippines? Actually, Tondo is the largest international port in Manila (or so, the synopsis said) and as I could see, it isn’t a good neighborhood to raise your kid or even to lived in.

The documentary brought me to the main character’s life (I’m so sorry I forgot the name) in a cramped house that I had to ask the director personally how could she manage to film it in that very cramped situation. As far as i can recall, the issue was not clearly-spoken there but instead, it merely showed you an issue worth to ask yourself. How the main character, who was pregnant at the time, managed to feed her family with everything that she could do (nothing much, I’d tell). The whole documentary kept me asking myself if the system there didn’t work or if it just their fate to be poor and that would be devastating😦 For me, a good documentary will force us to think over the issue presented and Tondo Beloved clearly did that very well.

Anyway, as the screening ended, there was Q&A session and I could manage myself to ask a little about the documentary to the director herself (yay!) and she told me that Tondo Beloved is a continuous project, there will be two more documentary following as this one only depicted the ‘Birth’ aspect. When I heard that, I was hoping to be able to watch more about this family.

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It was a great experience for me. A lot of good documentaries had my eyes opened and I also had a lot of fun at the closing ceremony. Apparently, documentary film festival is not that bad, at least for me…, and of course I’m eager to attend a lot more as far as I can manage it😀 That’s all, my report finished here and now I realize my English is not that good😆 Next time I’ll write in Bahasa Indonesia first then translate it to English, that way it will be a lot better and neater. Moreover, next time I’ll try my best to not sleep during screening😛