Filmwerkplaats Screening: Pilgrim (Karel Doing, Mei Homma, Faozan Rizal)
Japan and the Netherlands once competed for dominance over Indonesia, a strategic country in Southeast Asia. Throughout the first half of the 20th century, the archipelago was a place where millions of people were stranded and scattered as a result of the colonial occupation. Half a century later, three films were made to reenact these journeys. Instead of perpetuating big war-related narration, three filmmakers, a Japanese, a Dutch, and an Indonesian, shed light on personal memory, myth, and popular culture.
Journey to Tarakan
Karel Doing | 2002 | 47′ | The Netherlands | EN subs
After sixty years, director Karel Doing reawakens the story of his uncle Ed Huis in’t Veld, who was murdered by the Japanese in 1942 on the Indonesian island of Tarakan. He sets out in his uncle’s footsteps, he visits various ports (Amsterdam, Genoa, Port-Said) and stops off at Jakarta and Borneo. Quotations from Ed’s letters are illustrated with shots of archive documentaries from the colonial era which the filmmaker combines with his own commentary in the form of a travel diary filmed on Super8.
Faozan Rizal | 2004 | 45′ | Indonesia | EN subs
The film portrays the wanderings of Yasujiro Yamada, who in 2002 travelled to Indonesia in search of the grandfather after whom he was named. His grandfather had apparently been a Japanese soldier who survived a plane crash in Indonesia on his way to Pearl Harbor in 1942 but had never made it home.
My Note about Maiko’s Country
Mei Homma | 2017 | 19′ | Japan | EN subs
Maiko is a prostitute depicted in Indonesian seminal novel, This Earth of Mankind, by Pramoedya Ananta Toer. She was trafficked throughout Southeast Asian countries in the waning days of Dutch colonial rule. Mei Homma visited places and landmark in which Maiko was stationed. The film is a collage constructed by made-up visual archives shot in super 8 combined with of with legendary Chinese consumer goods ubiquitous in the Indonesian market.
*This screening is supported by Eye Filmmuseum