“How we can do better” is a new column that takes an insider’s look at various sectors and how they could improve. In this installment, we delve into film criticism in Indonesia.
“Hopefully, this talk won’t turn into something toxic and negative,” said Joko Anwar, one of Indonesia’s leading filmmakers, as he opened a discussion between filmmakers and film critics through Twitter Space, the social media’s live audio feature, on Aug. 20. That heads-up seemed necessary; there needed to be an antidote to the recent clash among filmmakers, critics and moviegoers in the country.
The clash started with the bad reception for doctor-and-musician-turned-filmmaker Tompi’s latest film, Selesai (Finished), which was panned by the general audience (its rating on the movie database site IMDb is 4.6 out of 10 stars). The public disdain was not only targeted at the film’s artistic quality but also its “sexist tone”, as one IMDb reviewer