2012

Eka is sleepy because she didn't have her nap today. Alright, gonna stop with the 3rd person thingy. Had a difficult time waking up this morning because my bed was in the perfect temperature *sigh* It feels rather unfair having to wake up early on a Saturday morning. I remember stupidly telling God something like I don't know what heaven looks like, but thank you God, my bed feels so heavenly. I am that silly. In the end I woke up later and was late today.

Watched 2012 with Yeni today. She missed her yoga class and in the end decided that we should just watch the movie now instead of the initially planned tomorrow. It was kinda funny when we were telling people, how about watching vingt douze? and people didn't really get it. Maybe I said it wrongly :P Anyway, I wanted to watch 2012 because I love John Cusack. Unless the movie is not so interesting or a horror, I will most likely watch any movie with John Cusack in it :P Con Air was the movie where I fell in love with him :P

Watching 2012, I was racking my brain what is another movie that carries similar theme as this one, where a vessel was being made and human being and species of living things were chosen to fill the vessel so that after the doomsday was over, the world could be populated with selected species? I think there's a movie like this, no? The idea of 2012 kinda scares me. I've watched a few disaster movies but I don't recall feeling frightened with the theme they present. Many scientists have said it's very unlikely that doomsday will happen on December 2012 but if doomsday does happen the way the movie showed it, it's kinda too freaky. The special effects are actually what captivated me the most in this movie. It must feel so nice to be able to generate such a catastrophe with all the cool softwares.

Story wise, I can't say it to be amazingly cool. For an action movie there's quite a lot of drama in it, which was not necessarily good. I even feel it was slightly boring. As much as I like John Cusack, he didn't particularly stand out in this movie, or particularly adorable and likeable. If any character stood out, for me it would be Woody Harrelson who played a nutty person who was telling everyone that doomsday is coming. Overall, getting out of it, I wasn't as excited as I was about it going in. It's another doomsday movie. I don't know, maybe I am just really losing interest on a lot of things. I wonder if something will hit me, charge me, and intrigue me. Per favore Dio, per favore?

:) eKa @ 7:43:00 PM • 0 comments

Merantau

Went to watch Merantau yesterday with Vivy. I went with much apprehension because afterall it's an Indonesian movie :P Seriously I wasn't planning to watch any movie until 2012 comes out. I found out about this movie because Vivy just casually mentioned it. Even then I don't think any of us give it any thought. What changed was, I saw the picture in GV website and then I read the synopsis which was so not enticing (made me roll my eyes) and then I hunted down the trailer. Saw the website, watched a behind the scene video blog and somehow got mildly interested. I asked Vivy if she wanted to watch it. Somehow she said okay maybe the cheap Tuesday was enticing as well. I can guarantee you that if she had said no, I wouldn't have been bothered to watch this. I think she wouldn't have watched it alone either.

So merantau in my definition is when someone leaves his / her hometown to make a life for himself / herself in another place. In a way, you can call me as merantau in Singapore. However I got it easy here. Afterall Singapore is so harmless. Anyways Merantau the movie kinda made merantau sounds like a rite of passage which me and Vivy are doubtful if there's any community in Indonesia currently which takes merantau as a rite of passage. So anyway, it tells the story of Yuda who hailed from Padang (the place which was badly damaged by an earthquake recently) who went merantau in Jakarta. Here he met a girl with a young brother who were living the hard life. The girl was being sold to some caucasian bad guys and Yuda who is really good in silat fought all the bad guys to save the girl. See, the story is not much of a gem but really the trailer which showed the fighting scenes really attracted me. But seriously though, if this weren't an Indonesian movie, I wouldn't watch it. Action-martial-art movies which purely sell actions without an interesting storyline don't really attract me. Well to say this is a purely Indonesian movie is kinda not necessarily true because the director and writer is actually British. However it was done in Indonesia, produced by an Indonesian company, yes they are some non-Indonesians working on it but I have to say that it is very Indonesian in nature.

For the life of me, I cannot recall ever watching an Indonesian movie in a cinema. There were some good ones that I had wanted to watch but somehow it never happened. So Merantau is actually the first Indonesian movie that I watched in a cinema. The first Indonesian movie that I actually paid money to watch! So it's kinda a big deal and I am happy to tell you I was quite entertained with it. I thought it was not bad. I thought it was really really cool. Yes perhaps compared to Hollywood or Jackie Chan movies, there are many things that Merantau is lacking but to know that this was done by Indonesians in Indonesia is just so awesome. You actually feel so proud about it and feel like clapping :D The story though is imperfect. As Vivy said there were many plot holes. Me being the critical one or perhaps you can say being the nagging girl who went to watch an action movie, is going to write some comments on it. So here you go :P These comments may contain spoilers though.

1. Yuda had the same bus take him from Padang to Jakarta. Padang is in Sumatra and Jakarta is in Java. They are 2 different island. So the idea of going from Padang to Sumatra in the same bus is kinda strange for me. I don't know if this really what happens in Indonesia but it's just strange. I wonder how long it takes if people really take the whole land and water way of going from Padang to Jakarta. By the way, the scenes of where Yuda's village was, is so beautiful. I wonder if those places are affected by the earthquake.

2. The scenes in Jakarta is really so Jakarta. Oshie gave me a new word today, dichotomy. He used this to explain how Jakarta is, which is very true. I thought Merantau captured the Jakarta which belongs to the haves not really well. It was pretty authentic, if I can say. So if you're not Indonesian or from Jakarta and thinking they're doing it just for the movie, it's not really just for the movie, it's a good depiction of Jakarta.

3. Along with how Jakarta looks like, the thugs were pretty authentic as well I have to say. In Jakarta we will call these people as preman. In hollywood movies, the thugs may come across as really strong, well built guys but true to the ones in Jakarta, the thugs in Merantau are not really the best physically looking people. They could come in small short skinny sizes :P and they would really fight with steels or with a cleaver :P

4. Some of the fighting scenes as cool as they were, were kinda too dramatic. One was the one in the lift. I was actually quite excited with the fighting scene in the lift because of the small area a lift present. However the timeline is illogical. The fight was supposed to last from the 5th floor to the 14th. Yes one of the bad guy did pause the lift, but Yuda restarted it. The fight and talking after the lift was restarted was just too long. So that's pretty illogical.

5. The bad guy in the lift was in the end shot by 2 other bad guys when the lift opened. This scene was just too dramatic for me. Too many shots were fired. Too many blood going on and even after that many shots and blood, the guy still didn't die instantly!!! Didn't make sense at all. However this scene kinda reminded me of how Hongkong action movies would have done it as well. Too much drama!

6. I have to add also, no Jakartans will not call the police if there's a major fight going on in the lobby of their appartment or if they hear a lot of shooting going on. Another illogical thing :P

7. The last fighting scene was between Yuda and the 2 caucasian bad guys. One of them was actually a martial art artist who in real life trains in China. I was expecting a lot from the fight between them however the fight between them wasn't that amazing. This bad guy even had to die first :( He was kinda handsome by the way.

8. I hate the ending. I don't like unhappy ending and major spoiler here!!! *alert* Yuda in the end died! The way he died was so dramatic. It reminds me of the movie Tootsie, in which Dustin Hoffman's character was auditioning for a part. He played a wounded person and was asked to move to the center of the stage from the end of the stage to be more dramatic in his dying scene. Dustin Hoffman's character said it didn't make sense, if you were dying why would you walk so far, you wouldn't even have the energy to do so. That's precisely what Yuda did however!!! He walked quite far despite of the major wound he had and his dying scene was pretty long that it doesn't make sense. In real life I think one would faint before dying since he lost a lot of blood. This kinda thing gets annoying, really :P

9. Some of the lines the character said were pretty Indonesian (I feel), some of the acting were pretty Indonesian as well. What do I mean with that, hmmm ... sometime I feel Indonesian tend to get unnecessarily dramatic :P However, I thought the casts were great. Great bunch of people. Everybody did really well. I thought Iko Uwais who played the main character, Yuda, was really cool but I think I like seeing him because of the character Yuda. Yuda is such a nice guy. So even though the guy is not the most handsome guy around, you would just fall for such nice decent guy!

I think I actually still have a lot of things to say but I'm gonna stop here. I am totally recommending this to all Indonesian out there to catch it. Non-Indonesians, well I don't know if you would be as excited as me but I would be very happy if you watch it too :D I thought the movie is a really good production coming out of Indonesia :) As I said, it kinda makes me feel proud that Indonesia can come out with something like this :D

:) eKa @ 9:45:00 PM • 0 comments

Of Life - 07.11.09

Hello peeps. Had a nightmare on my nap today and I really didn't like it. Aaarrghhh!!! My nightmares usually are not about monsters or death situation but about uncomfortable situations and they are so bad because of how they make me feel inside it. The feeling kinda lingered when I woke up so normally I would feel moody afterwards (not like the moody feeling hasn't been happening all the time) *sigh*

Anyway today started quite weird also. You know how when you sleep, it's like the time for your brain to reboot. Well my reboot happened pretty weird this early morning. This has actually happened before. I got awoken and I didn't know where I was and what I was actually doing. I got totally disoriented. Normally then I would first realized I just got awoken from a sleep and then I tried to figure out where I was. Somehow normally I would try to think if I was in my bed in Jakarta and then I got utterly disappointed to know I was in Singapore. This morning however, I didn't get to figure that out. After the location question came, my brain somehow wanted to quickly figure out what day it is. I figured it was Saturday morning and with that information, all were cleared. I knew where I was and what will be happening. I wonder if you guys have experienced similar thing?

Anyways, I had quite a full social week. Kinda good to be meeting different people and be doing different stuff and talking different stuff. Kinda good to be spending time with people who are nice.

1) Went to watch My Sister's Keeper last Sunday with Vivy. Darn it, I cried a lot. I think this is the only movie that made me cry that much. It's like crying from start to end! I read in Wikipedia that the original story from the book differs quite greatly with the movie but I like how the movie ends. I think if it had followed the book, it would have been more depressing. Abigail Breslin was of course great. Cameron Diaz did really well too. You don't get to sense her silliness at all which normally occur in the comedies that she did. I thought the cast were really great. An emotionally draining movie but I thought it was really good.

2) Tuesday I met Oshie for dinner. The last time I saw him was actually on Christmas last year! I think he has physically changed a bit but that's the least of his changes actually. I don't know how informative and helpful I was for him during dinner :( I don't think I helped much. He's gonna go through a big change in life soon. I asked him how it felt. He said he was feeling excited about it. I kinda like that spirit in him. I hope things gonna turn out great for him which most probably will because he works so hard and I'm sure he's not gonna stop fighting. I have a stand that sometime what matter is just you work hard for whatever it is you are doing even though people don't think much of what you do because ultimately I feel it is God that you should impress. Everything that will happen will come from God or at least that's how I want it to be. I want what happen in my life to be from God. I feel sincerity in what you do is very important. Personally I just would like to kick ass in no matter what I do :P

3) Wednesday I went to watch a show by Ennio Marchetto. I got a free ticket courtesy of The Italian Cultural Institute :) I chose to take la Gioia since she took me for a ballet performance during Singapore Sun Festival. Ennio Marchetto's performance was quite funny though I found some of the jokes were pretty crude. Seriously there was one part which I thought was too crude for the conservative uptight me. The least crude but still disturbing for me was when Kermit the frog was stroking Ms. Piggy's body with the tune of Touch My Body from Mariah Carey. Err ... it was disturbing for me. There were some kids in the show. I don't know if their parents had to explain anything especially during the crudest part which I'm not gonna write. The show does make me think that there's definitely a generation gap between the youngster and the older ones. The youngster ones may wonder who were the people, who were actually Freddie Mercurie, Tina Turner, Dolly Parton and such. The older ones may wonder who were the people, who were actually people like Kanye West and Lady Gaga. I wonder if there will come a time as well when I'm not following what's happening currently. Perhaps it has happened actually.

4) Yesterday I met up with Yeni to prep her for today. Got a free dinner out of it :P I really like having her in my Saturday's engagement. I realize it's kinda really nice to have an Indonesian around. Today I see new people. It's always the case that people would just disappear slowly but I really hope the core group will stay for long. It would be kinda hard to keep doing this alone.

On other news. I have been kinda crazy with photoshop photomerge since the photoshop world event that I attended last week. Been playing with my pictures but I don't have much pictures to play with. If I had known how easy it is, I would have taken my pictures better. Unfortunately my vaio will not be able to take all the heavy work. Aarrghh ... is it possible that someone buy me a new laptop? *sigh* You can see what I have been doing here. They are totally far from perfect and I wonder if they are printed if they are any good, but so far on screen, they are kinda nice :P Some of my favourites are below. Julia Child said don't say anything you do is of no good to people. Let them figure it out by themselves. Chances are they may not, so why bring yourself down in front of them. However I am gonna comment on these pictures and maybe it will help you be more critical if you see pictures :P

This one is of Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy. I really like this picture. I really like the pastel yellow and orange houses on the bridge especially since the rest of the buildings wear a light pastel colours. Not really a good composition but really with the angle I had, it's the best I have.

This one is of the Tuscan hills and vineyards. Kinda nice small but its original size kinda look not so nice on my Vaio.

The last one, the longest yet, and most problematic is of the Hongkong skyline. This comes from pictures from different days. There's quite a difference from the part on the left and the one on the right. The right one is actually sharper than the one on the left. The shots from the different days show how different the weather were. The one on the left has clouds while the one on the right has a dark sky. Did you notice that? :P I like the colours of the reflection on the water! Very very nice!

:) eKa @ 8:46:00 PM • 0 comments

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