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Monthly Archives: November 2004

Ouch!



Huh!

Tertipu aku!

Tipu tepu!

Kamu …



Berani-beraninya menipu

Sok ngaku-ngaku!

Bikin kita termangu-mangu!

Ngga taunya …



Pinter juga kamu ya!

Bikin aku terpingkal, terbahak, terhenyak, terperanjat, terbelalak

Padahal mustinya aku kesal, sebal, marah udah kaya orang dijarah

Ah kamu …



Tukang selingkuh!

Tapi maunya ambil untung

Bukan prinsip buka tutup

Tapi tetep hanyut

Teruusss …



Aku sekarang heran

Pe-De bener kamu penuh keyakinan

Kalo ga ada yang mempertanyakan

Padahal aku udah curiga mati-matian

Ngaku sodara tapi ga ada kemiripan!



Duh Gusti, anak kecil ini sudah tumbuh besar

Aku yang lebih tua tetep merasa ga wajar

Kalo ngeliat dia jadi liar

Yang Maha, biar …

Janji ngga dibakaR?



🙂



– Cole Porter’s Night and Day plays along inside my head throughout the trip –


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Posted by on 11/30/2004 in Personal

 

25 Years : A Space Odyssey

There’s one particular thought that has been hanging on my mind for the past few weeks:

Isn’t it funny, when we grow older, we always long for a space on our own, yet at the same time, we tend to get insecure with being alone?

Consider the former first.

Some people, or should I say parents, have this great ability in bearing their children to live on their own as soon as the necessity arises.

Hmmm … can I consider myself as a lucky one here? 🙂

It was both a mutual decision made between me and my folks that I had to live by myself when I started enrolling my study in high school, and what followed was the addiction to make every single decision by myself, to take care of everything by these two tiny hands and feet, and to adapt and perceive new occurences by filters I created on my own.

So much so of the addiction to the extent that it may not be easy to adjust being together with my family again, yet, coming from the similar background as myself, my folks understand very well that their only son badly needs to be freed!

Here I am, it’s been ten years.

And it surely has been ten years of not realizing the danger of the latter part. Or actually, being trapped in the comfort zone of achieving the former?

It will only be redundant if I repeat over the countless sources suggesting that insecurities come from ridiculous demands unconsciously set by ridiculous bunch of people claiming as respectable representative of society, or from unintentional pressures seeing our friends suddenly taking part of marriage rush! baby boom trend!

One can only wonder where the salary has gone at the month of wedding ceremonies …





Again, my writings selalu tak berpangkal tak berujung, it’s a matter of blurting out my thoughts and whatever
I feel like penning.


My dearie Onny,
The scene is on bus 61 on the way to our dimsum dinner at Bukit Timah.




“Tell me about it yah, Pal! Semua orang udah nggendong bayi, gue masih maen laki!”
“Huahahahaha … Elo juga tuh ye! Nyari laki yang rada beneran napa, heran!”
“Yeah, gue pengennya dapet remaja mesjid, apa daya dapetnya yang naughty”
“Hihihihihi … Dan dari semua laki elo, ga ada yang gue approve, kecuali yang terakhir …”
“Gila! Haduh, ga mungkin banget gitu loh!”
“Kenapa ngga?”
“Elo tau sendiri lah!”
“Yeah … Too bad!”




“Nie’, isn’t it funny, makin kita gede, makin kita pengen idup sendiri. But at the same time, berasa ngga sih makin insecure with being single?”
“Hahahahah, been there done that Pal, and I’m still doing it now.”
“Guess Sex and the City doesn’t even help yah.”
“Hahahahaha…”




“So, ada rencana balik for good?”
(diam)
“Ngga tau Nie, I don’t know what draws me to the city. Goodness, it’s this little tiny island! Yet somehow, I feel more at myself here, I don’t know, especially with me being me …”
(ketawa bareng)
“Hahahaha .. Yeah, with YOU being YOU!”
“Yeah! Hahahahaha …”


Ella Fitzgerald is belting her rendition of How Long Has This Been Going On? And it couldn’t be more perfect than this –
 
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Posted by on 11/29/2004 in Personal

 

-from my little notebook- (1)

forget.

don’t put him inside.

don’t call.

don’t initiate.

don’t jump.

don’t ever hope.

are you happy?

I’m not.

but to see you happy,

I can only ask for this bearable torture.

jotted down on my little red dolphin notebook while I still lit the flame up

 
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Posted by on 11/27/2004 in Personal

 

November



I always fall in love WITH November.


The end of the year is still a month away, there’s still a time to make up the numerous unfulfilled new year’s resolution, which very likely, be carried forward to the following year! Hahahahaha … By nature, human beings are blisfully equipped with this ability to procrastinate. *grin*.


I like November for its smell of the rains, which to certain extent can be irritating, but just smell the breeze while taking a stroll along the bridges lining along Singapore river, the small path on the pedestrian leading to Esplanade without having to block the ray of glaring sunlight, or sipping a cuppa in one of those cafes in Liang Seah Street while witnessing the drops of water from the sky in front of your eyes and your body lying on a cozy sofa, what more can you ask?


November gives me a thrill whenever I take myself into a wandering land of daydreaming 🙂


I always fall in love IN November.



Not ‘fall in love’ per se, but to be in love with anything related to love itself.


Well, yeah, way back 8 years ago, gue punya pacar pertama kali di bulan November. Tahun berikutnya pun naksir orang bulan November, dan taun berikutnya jadian bulan November, walopun sumpah ini ga penting banget! Hahahaha!

Sadly, the pattern has been dismissed from 5 years ago, nothing has happened to my love-life in November since half a a decade ago.



What might be interesting is the fact that I’m surrounded by love.

Again, don’t take it literally.

I’m referring to these people around me who are smitten by that particular feeling.


Love.


or simply Like.

could be enhanced by Lust.


or maybe Loath!


Apapun itu, eksistensi gue di bulan November taun 2004 ini masih sama seperti yang selalu terjadi sejak separuh dekade yang lalu : sendiri.


Dan seperti yang selalu terjadi, keberadaan gue dikelilingi oleh orang-orang yang sedikit lebih beruntung dari gue.


Ada pacar, ada selingkuhan, ada yang menyukai, ada yang lagi disukain, ada yang masih bertahan dengan mantan kekasih, ada yang menemukan rasa cinta, ada yang berkisah kasih sesat sesaat (hahahahah), ada cemburu, ada rasa sayang, ada being obsessive, ada yang setia menemani, ada being hurt, ada jealousy, ada harapan untuk mendapatkan, dan semua ada di bulan November ini. (gue mo ngomong “semua ada deh disini!” ntar dituntut ama Campur-Campur nya Anteve!)


Me?


Let’s put it this way.


(trying hard not to sound cliche and politically correct) I’m happy for them, I can emphatize, symphatize, feel the way they might be reeling their feelings into at the moment.


Walaupun gue berada di luar sistem itu.


Eventhough not any single of what I mentioned above apply to me.


Meskipun gue yakin, saat ini Tuhan lagi ngeliat gue sambil bilang, “Nauval, just wait a little longer. You know how things always work out for you, and this is no exception.”

–reminiscence of 2046 through its wonderful and mystical soundtrack accompanies this writing–

 
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Posted by on 11/21/2004 in Personal

 

Festival Film Indonesia 2004 – My Takes!

How can I miss this information on the nominations of this long-awaited Festival Film Indonesia (FFI) 2004? And how can they create such a list of nominations? Before I complain any further, be prepared! It’s Nauval at his film-buff’est’ (if there’s such a word) commenting on this year’s FFI!

Best Film:

– Ada Apa Dengan Cinta?

– Arisan!

– Biola Tak Berdawai

– Ca Bau Kan

– Eliana, Eliana

– Pasir Berbisik

Nauval says:

Isn’t it obvious that the list itself represents the outstanding works of Indonesian rising film industry for the past half a decade?



Count out AADC? for its phenomenal box-office takings which may not appeal to the festival members.




Leave with 5, it’s a matter of whether the darling judges will go to literary work (Ca Bau Kan) that raised the furor from the author himself for butchering some essential elements from the novel, or to art-y work (Pasir Berbisik) that puts a 2-hour journey of watching into a long, endless trip, or to supposedly dramatical work that seems to stand still (Biola Tak Berdawai).




I will always root for Eliana, Eliana for its rich and deep socio-cultural context presented in a very subtle and convincing manner yet very easy to digest, the main problem lies on the film itself being marketed as an ‘indie’ flick targeted for a very limited number of audience.




The safest take? For its daring breakthrough wrapped in such a candy-for-the-eye presentation, Arisan! will sweep of the jury’s feet over its lovable and charming story that appease to everyone.



Will win: Arisan!

Should win: Eliana, Eliana

Should have been nominated : (none)



Best Director:

– Nan Achnas : Pasir Berbisik

– Nia DiNata : Ca Bau Kan

– Riri Riza : Eliana, Eliana

– Rudy Sudjarwo : Ada Apa Dengan Cinta?



Nauval says:


Wow! What a battle of genders!

I tip my hat off to Rudy for bringing in a fresh look at how a good teen flick should be, as well as to Riri Riza for his most mature work to date in a flick that could only be made after such a long thoughtful process of observation on the life itself.



However, showy works shall prevail, and no directors have gone painstakingly further than Nan and Nia in putting up every single pieces of details in their period flicks. After all, period-theme films always prove to be more difficult to handle and they should get advantages from this fact.

Yet, Nan places herself one step above for injecting a dose of strong feminism and emotional elements in her piece to make up what lacks in Nia’s film (which she puts nicely in her Arisan! to be precise).



Will win : Nan Achnas

Should win : Riri Riza

Should have been nominated : Nia DiNata (Arisan!)



Best Actor:

– Andre Stinky : Kiamat Sudah Dekat

– Ferry Salim : Ca Bau Kan

– Nicholas Saputra : Ada Apa Dengan Cinta?

– Tora Sudiro : Arisan!



Nauval says:

Aaarrgghhhh !!! The weakest category of all !!! Heeelllppp !!! *tutup layar monitor sampe gelep*

Dear members of jury, WHAT WERE YOU THINKING??????




I have to calm myself whenever Tora appears on the screen. Not for being other-worldly handsome, but I’ve to calm and prevent myself from tearing the screen into pieces for his horrible dead-panned expression that only enhances his lack of acting skill! Isn’t it just enough for him to get nominated in those popular vote a la MTV Movie Awards? For goodness sake!




Don’t get me started on Andre Stinky! Refer to the second name he’s using here.




Nicholas Saputra slips into his role nicely in his first film (Tora, note that!), although the role itself may be seen as being “too-common” or “too-ordinary”. Sadly, it doesn’t help either if he gets nominated in Biola Tak Berdawai, his Rangga character in AADC? gets into him very well.




Thank God one name deserves to be here!


Ferry Salim has certainly put his nuanced emotion in that seemingly two-dimensional role yet his ability in transforming himself as once a dignified man only to be tortured by his passion will get rewarded nicely at this year’s festival.



Will win: Ferry Salim

Should win : Ferry Salim

Should have been nominated : Slamet Rahardjo (Pasir Berbisik), Jeremias Nyangoen (Kanibal Sumanto)



Best Actress:

– Cut Mini Theo : Arisan!

– Dian Sastrowardoyo : Ada Apa Dengan Cinta?

– Lola Amaria : Ca Bau Kan

– Rachel Maryam : Eliana, Eliana

– Ria Irawan : Biola Tak Berdawai



Nauval says:


Contrary to the male counterpart, this is the toughest category of all!



But a little curiosity here, Dian Sastro in AADC? instead of Pasir Berbisik? If only she got nominated for the latter film, then she would rise up as one of the strong contenders here, but this time, she has to be satisfied being left out earlier in the race.

One of the biggest surprises of my film-watching experience last year is to see Cut Mini Theo steps into the skin of her role in an unbelievably fitting way without being over-acting that I can’t think of any other actress would replace her there. Yet the competition proves to be too stiff for her to grab the coveted prize.

Lola may get notice for her image as one of the prominent figures in the industry rather than her titled role. She has a great deal of emotional scenes which she really stretches her acting skill further, yet they may slip out of our memories easily. After all, Ca Bau Kan is not really centred on the title character, it’s an ensemble piece.

Which of course, not the case for Eliana, Eliana. I fall in love immediately with Rachel Maryam upon seeing her in this film which seems like taking a cab ride together with her role here. As the film clearly focuses on Eliana’s mind and behaviour, Rachel brings the character alive and vivid, she embodies herself as a troubled woman who maintains her dignity despite having to struggle her life upside down. You can feel that the film was created with her in mind.

I try my best not to make any ‘safest’ choice here, but there can only be one award, and Ria Irawan outshine them all. Her experience of over 30 years in this industry seems to be impossible to defeat, she is the kind of actress whom you can always count on for a good performance no matter how small the role is, and her journey of changing characterization in Biola Tak Berdawai makes the film truly watchable.



Will win : Ria Irawan

Should win : Rachel Maryam

Should have been nominated : Dian Sastro (Pasir Berbisik)



Best Supporting Actor:

– Dedy Mizwar : Kiamat Sudah Dekat

– Didi Petet : Pasir Berbisik

– Mang Udel : Pasir Berbisik

– Surya Saputra : Arisan!



Nauval says:

Again, one name is clearly out of place, and that name is none other than Surya! Goodness, can’t they see how uncomfortable he is in the role that requires one to be a whole-hearted gay, but he just can’t make it. Even worse than Tora! Enough said.

Three seniors will compete against each other, but let’s be frank, Dedy Mizwar has been doing this kind of role in television for over a decade, and seeing his performance in Kiamat Sudah Dekat, I don’t see any significant difference.

Leave with two, Mang Udel and Didi Petet, seriously I don’t recall Mang Udel’s presence there! Is it a matter of appearing too briefly or he convinces us in slipping to his role well?

Whatever it is, my vote goes to Didi Petet who goes against the stereotype, he hasn’t done many villainous roles over the years, but it gives me chill during the scene where he persuades Dian Sastro to touch herself. Ain’t that scary?!



Will win : Didi Petet

Should win : Didi Petet

Should have been nominated : Joseph Ginting (Ca Bau Kan), Robby Tumewu (Ca Bau Kan), Alvin Adam (Ca Bau Kan) –> yes, the film is filled with a number of great supporting turns from its actors!



Best Supporting Actress:

– Aida Nurmala : Arisan!

– Henidar Amroe : Eliana, Eliana

– Jajang C. Noer : Eliana, Eliana

– Lulu Dewayanti : Ca Bau Kan



Nauval says:

Can’t help saying this, but … what happens to Christine Hakim in Pasir Berbisik?! Just because she’ll be receiving Lifetime Achievement Award, can’t she just being nominated this time around? Her presence maybe overshadowed by Dian Sastro, but it’s one of her mettiest roles I could recall.




Again, cross out Aida Nurmala! Gee, I feel like somebody should question the casting process of Arisan! Apart from Rachel Maryam and Cut Mini, everyone seem to be out of place there.

Lulu’s role has too little screen time to be taken into consideration and she doesn’t give anything new to her character as a cheapskate whore, and finally, it’s all a deathmatch between the two: Jajang C. Noer and Henidar Amroe in their grittiest roles ever.

Jajang is one consummate artist who constantly gives a terrific performance, no exception is her performance here as a mother who tries to persuade her only daughter to return to their homeland, only to find herself being confronted with the reality of big cities she secretly longs to have. Witnessing her emotional ride on this flick throughout making us feeling emphatized to the characterization of a mother she creates within.

Henidar Amroe doesn’t give too many lines in Eliana, Eliana, but isn’t that the rule of acting? Lines are merely replacements of what our gestures and facial expression can’t deliver, and if we hold on to this rule, then she succeeds in achieving that. She has only one scene, in one setting, yet her presence haunts us long after she’s gone. The way she cries, the way she holds her cigarette are meticulously crafted to reveal her character’s innerself, rather than seeing Henidar tries to act as one.



Tough call.



Will win : Jajang C. Noer

Should win : Henidar Amroe

Should have been nominated : Christine Hakim (Pasir Berbisik), Rachel Maryam (Arisan!)



Best Screenplay:

– Ada Apa Dengan Cinta? by Jujur Pranoto

– Biola Tak Berdawai by Sekar Ayu Asmara

– Ca Bau Kan by Nia DiNata

– Kiamat Sudah Dekat by Musafar Yasin

– Pasir Berbisik by Nan Achnas & Rayya Makarim



Nauval says:

What’s this, good things from Arisan! seem to be left out whenever it is necessary to be nominated?

And the overlook of Eliana, Eliana in this category just happens to be too much to bear! These two films with smart lines peppered here and there have to be mentioned for their original ideas. And by original, I don’t mean to drag on a conversation of necessity in splitting adapted screenplay and original screenplay, but can we take a look at the nominees?




AADC?, while being an above average teen flick as a whole, bears a resemblance to previous decades’ numerous teen films.


Kiamat Sudah Dekat feels like an episode of Dedy Mizwar’s religious television series.

Leave with three other nominees, Ca Bau Kan may suffer a drawback from the strong criticism blurted out by literary clique over the butchering of the original novel which may hinder its potential in grabbing the coveted prize.


Between Biola Tak Berdawai and Pasir Berbisik that venture into the same field of psychological journey of women and their torturing lives, my choice falls on the latter for its strong concept of the pain and the struggle under pressuring atmosphere, with the price that the film may be hard to digest for some.



Will win : Pasir Berbisik

Should win : Ca Bau Kan

Should have been nominated : Eliana, Eliana, Arisan!




============================================



Well, whatever the result is, here’s a cheer for FFI, don’t ever stop!

Thank you, Helmy Yahya, it’s well-done!

 
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Posted by on 11/16/2004 in Film

 

Over the Pandan Leaf Chicken and the likes of it

Two days ago, on a surprisingly chilly Monday nite, I had dinner at Sakura restaurant in City Hall area with Dendry, Merlien, Wenny and Agee.



OK, from this first sentence you may also sense that nothing extraordinary will go beyond this point.

I’m fine with that. In fact, I agree that there’s nothing unusual from this sort of gathering, knowing the fact that we often meet one another, way back since our college life.



Aha! There you go!



I was suddenly reminded that these beloved people are also the ones I spent my lunch time in Seaview Canteen when I still struggled with my studying in NUS. Those good ol’ days where you could wander around in shorts, sandals, T-shirts that God-knows-whether-you-iron-’em-or-not, skipped class or just finished your tutorials, talked over nothing for hours while a breeze of fresh air from the seaport far away enhanced the atmosphere of warmth and innocent tenderness.



Fast forward to that Monday nite, here we are in our working suit suited to accomodate our offices’ ‘climate’, and everyone seemed to be ready to blurted out their bad day/good day at work! From how you need to work your ass off to maintain your seat in a good place of the company you’re working in, from how unforgivingly rich our bossess are and the deals they keep on making and securing, from how we’ve got to compromise and consider whenever we are about to take our leaves, from how to climb on corporate ladder, from being the ones who work head over feet and your colleagues and bosses take over the credits,

I tell ya, it’s not about “how it’s gonna be” like the way we imagined our life to be when we had that lunches 4 years ago, it’s a matter of “how it need to be done ASAP” now, unless you want to stay in the reminiscence of nostalgia and step away from the spotlights of real life, you’ve no idea what you miss.



So, over the fried baby squids, sambal kangkung, claypot seafood soup, pandan leaf chicken and ended with beancurd longan, we indulged ourselves in, simply, our lives and whatever that comes along with it. Some crave in a career path as they wish themselves end up being with, some are still trying to figure out, some are getting ’em as a means of survival, some are simply doing what needs to be done, some are just nice! 🙂



It’s still us, the same old person that you know since our good ol’ days, be it from childhood, high schools, one-time flings, pubs, religious institutions, gatherings, etc. Nothing changes, except the change itself, or as I prefer to put it in as, we have evolved.





Thelonious Monk and his works accompanies this writing —

 
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Posted by on 11/10/2004 in English, Personal

 

puisi kesiangan

terhenyak oleh temaram malam aku menengadah ke atas.

bukan langit yang menaungi tapi sekedar susunan kayu yang melengkung.

telaga itu masih menaungi aliran air,

melawan hentakan kilau cahaya yang berperang,

merebut tempat tengah dimana tiada yang berdiri.



tubuh utuhmu menghampirinya dan merangsangnya.

entah kejutan apa yang menjalari arus nadimu,

bibirmu basah oleh kecupan.



tapi hanya itu.

bukan nalurimu yang tergerak.



aku masih bermimpi, dan terus menerus menagih.