Monday, September 27, 2010

Sang Pencerah

We went to see Sang Pencerah tonight, because 1) today is the only day that we both were kinda free this week,2) the choice was between Sang Pencerah & The Experiment, I wasnt in the mood of watching something cruel.

It's a story based on Ahmad Dahlan's life, the founder of Muhammadiyah. In the beginning the pace was pretty fast, but later on it was a bit too slow, resulting in 112minutes of movie. Since the languages of the movie are Indonesian, Javanese, Dutch and Arabic, I missed a lot when they didnt translate the Arabic part, some of the actors spoke Javanese pretty fluently, while in most actors you'll hear the non-javanese accent. There were scenes in Dutch, I wished they trained the actors to speak their dialogues in Javanese accent or for those Eurasian in more Indo accent. As I watched it at Grand Indonesia, they screened it with English subtitle, however, most of the subtitles were missing, and when there were, it contained typos or translated wrongly.

In general I like the story line, there were a lot of critiques on Moslems and leaders, which resonant with our daily problems these days. I also learnt that according to Ahmad Dahlan in the movie Muhammadiyah is not a sect of Islam but only a social organization. I found it interesting as nowadays I had this feeling that Muhammadiyah is more like a sect, just as NU because people would say that they are Muhammadiyah or NU or Salafi, etc.

The movie told the struggle that Dahlan had because he challenged the traditional norm and practice which was a mixed between Hindu and Islam. He wanted to introduce modernity to Moslems at that time. Others who refused his teaching branded him as Kafir, infidel, partly because he used modern tools in spreading his teaching. He tried to correct the direction of prayer which was toward the west, something that was still practiced in parts of Indonesia to this day. In fact, only weeks ago the newspapers were full about this matter, that most of Indonesian mosques are facing the wrong direction. When he insisted on building his own musholla with the right direction, people burned it down. He then joined Boedi Oetomo before founding Muhammadiyah.

The release of this movie was coincidence with the inter religious problems in Indonesia. I hope it can be an inspiration about religious role in the society, religious freedom and pluralism.


colson said...

I had to google some time to find esxtra information on the film ("The Enlightenment" -I hope that's actually the right translation). But now I know a little bit more about this obviously pretty expensive movie( Rupiah 12 billion, wasn't it?).

Like yours others also gave it rather positive reviews; pretty authentic late 19th century - locations and clothes that is for instance.

Well, I probably will have to leave it at that. Hardly any chance to see it over here.


triesti said...

if I compare it with Gie, I like this one better, especially the clothing part. Gie's clothing looked brand new, this one although some still look pretty good, but for the most part it looked like a daily use batik.

If I happen to see it with subtitle, I'll let you know. Or perhaps, you should check out IFFR in R'dam, they always have Indonesian movies each year, sometimes even premiere at the IFFR.

colson said...

Yes, IFFR may screen it. I'll keep an eye on the organization's publicity.