Monday, May 7, 2018

Finally: Thank you! (Acknowledgements)

Every journey has an end. And so is my PhD journey.
What an experience! Therefore, I need to say thanks to everybody, particularly the following individuals and institutions:
(taken from my PhD thesis)


It has been a long and winding PhD journey to me for the last four years, and alhamdulillah, all praise be to God, eventually it reaches an end. I would like to express my special appreciation and thanks to some people.
First and foremost,  I would like to thank Prof. Mark Jancovich as my primary supervisor,  for giving me  very useful and sharp feedback and suggestions on many things, and  encouraging my research so I can develop as a better film researcher. Secondly, thanks to Dr. Rayna Denison, my secondary supervisor who helped me a lot during these four years.
I would like to thank   my external and internal examiners, Dr. Iain Robert Smith and Dr. Emma Pett, respectively.
I also want to express my gratitude to my sponsor, DIKTI Scholarship from Higher Education Directorate, Ministry of Research, Technology, and Higher Education, Republic of Indonesia.  Also to Bina Nusantara University, my home-university in Jakarta, for the support and family allowances, particularly The Rector of Binus University (Prof. Harjanto Prabowo), Executive Dean of BINUS INTERNATIONAL (Firdaus Alamsjah, PhD), Dean of Faculty of Computing and Media (Minaldi Loeis, M.Sc., MM), Head of Film Program (Adilla Amelia, MFA), as well as Career Scholarship Department (Icha, Ignatia, etc.).
My sincere thanks also goes to people at UEA’s FTM Department and PGR Office (particularly Clare Thornett and Ann Nichols), thank you for the PPD modules and Conference Grant.  And thank you, UEA, for giving me two awards in 2015, Student Award (UEA Engagement Awards), and Public Engagement Prizes (UEA Graduate School Prizes), and hiring me as an associate tutor for a semester in 2014 (thank you to the module conveners: Dr. Christine Cornea, Dr. Rayna Denison,  and Peter Kramer).
Also many thanks to UEA’s Graduate Student Association for Graduate conference fund, so I could attend and present papers at the Global Exploitation Cinemas Conference (Lincoln 27-29 May 2015) and the Cine-Excess Conference (Brighton, 14-16 November, 2014).
I did my successful archive visits in Jakarta in 2014 for two months.  For this, I thank Sinematek Indonesia (particularly Mbak Nia Sulaeman) and the National Library of Indonesia, as well as   UEA’s Employability and Engagement Fund for the travel grant.
To Jack Jensen and all the global fans (bloggers, members of AVManiacs), thank you for the discussions in the forums (which I passively participated) and online reviews.
The PhD journey is not only about writing a thesis, but also networking, conferences, and journals, as well as developing myself as a better person.  I learned a lot about organizing scholarly events in the UK from Dr. Ben Murtagh from SOAS University of London who asked me to become co-organizer for the Workshop on Indonesian Cinema and London Indonesia Film Screenings in 2013 and 2015.  I also thank the fellow 2015 co-organizers who are also my UK-based PhD student buddies in Indonesian Cinema studies, Tito Imanda and Eric Sasono.  Thank you the participants of the events,   Ari Purnama, Dr. Dag Yngvesson, Dr. Yvonne Michalik, Dr. Novi Kurnia, Dr. Alicia Izharuddin, Dr. Dafna Ruppin, Dr. Adam Knee, Viola Lasmana, and Katie Whitcombe.
During my PhD study I was honored that I was invited  by Patrick Campos as guest editor of the Plaridel Special Issue, Volume 11 Issue 02, Theme: The Bad, The Worse, and The Worst: The Significance of Indonesian Cult, Exploitation, and B Movies. Thank you, Patric and the Plaridel team, and also the writers: Dag, Eric, Dr. Thomas Barker, Prof.  Xavier Mendik, Bastian Mereisonne, Andrew Leavold, Dr. Maymunah Munir, and Makbul Mubarak.
My Supervisor told me to aim for the main conferences to present my papers, such as SCMS and MECCSA. And I did both. Thank you SCMS 2015 and MECCSA 2014 for my fee waiver and travel bursary and made it possible for me to attend and present my papers. Also SPRET Educational Trust that made it possible for me to fly to Montreal. And to Veronika Kusuma and Prof. Mary Steedly who invited me to Harvard University for a talk (30 March 2015) organized by  Politics and Culture in Indonesia Working Group and the Department of Anthropology, right after the SCMS conference.
At ASEASUK 2016, I had great experiences as the co-organizer of a successful panel with Tito Imanda, and met great panelists:  Wikanda Promkhuntong, Dr. Adil Johan, Dr. Muria Endah, and Shadia Prasmadji. Thank you, all!
I co-organized at least two public engagement events related to my PhD research, and got good feedback from the audience. In Jakarta, I co-organized a two-week film screenings and discussion at Kineforum, June 2014, and double bill screenings as part of Scalarama Bristol at The Cube Microplex. Thank you, Alexander Matius and Kineforum people, Matt D, and Toby Reynolds.
For good friends while I was in Norwich as well as Bristol, thank you PPI Norwich, UEA Indonesian Society, Ihsan Mosque,  PPI Bristol, Al-Hijrah Muslim Indonesian Society in Bristol, and Bristol Indonesian Society. Also, my fellow Binus colleague in the UK: Indra Kusumawardhana.
Of course, I should thank to fellow PhD UEA students, particularly Linda “Ky” McCarthy, Gopalan Mullik, Ruchika Gurung, Miriam Bros, Jeremy Qian, Toby Reynolds, Ed Vollans, Irene Cuder, Martin Tease, Adam and Patrick Bingham-Scales, Filipa Antunes, Alexander Plowman, Phil Smith, Ellen Wright, and Robert Manning. I also want to thank all of UEA’s lecturers.
I was inspired by some people to research the topic of classic Indonesian exploitation cinema: Pete Tombs, Joko Anwar Thomas Barker. Thank you.  Also my fellow Indonesian and Southeast Asian Film scholars and critics who I have not mentioned yet: Hikmat Darmawan, Veronika Kusuma, Dr. Intan Paramaditha, Prof. Andrew Weintraub, Dr. Philippa Lovatt, Dr. Gaik Cheng Khoo, Dr. Mariam Lam, Prof. Ariel Heryanto, Asmayani Kusrini, Ifan Ismail, and Krisnadi Kurniawan.
Moreover, thanks to the circles of exploitation and cult film and aca-fandom scholars: Dr. Iain Robert Smith, Dr. Austin Fisher, Dr. Johnny Walker, Dr. Kate Egan, and Prof. Henry Jenkins.
Thanks to Amir Muhammad who took me to Chow Kit, Kuala Lumpur, and experienced the alternative VCD shop in 2009.
And, I am very grateful that I have a big family with big support for my study: my father H. Eko Winarto, SE,  my mother Hj. Etty Herawati, my sisters, my brother and their families,  my parents-in-law, sisters-in-law, brother-in-law and their big family. Thank you very much.
And finally, I should thank Rossy Syaukat and Medina Azzahra, my wife and little daughter, who accompanied me while I am in the UK who helped me keep my “sanity” and my life joyful during my PhD studies. This accomplishment would not have been possible without them. Thank you. Both of them mean the world to me.
Part of the Introduction and Chapter 1 were published by Plaridel (Vol 11 no. 2, 2014), namely “A Note from the Editor/And Introduction: The Significance of Indonesian Cult, Exploitation, and B Movies”.
A modified version of Chapter 2 is in the process of publication in the forthcoming Cine-Excess Journal, 2017, titled “Entertaining the Villagers: Rural Audiences, Traveling Cinema, and Exploitation Movies in Indonesia”.   
A modified version of Chapter 5 will be published  in the forthcoming Plaridel journal on Film and Archive in Southeast Asian Cinema (edited by Adam Knee)

Post Scriptum:
In addition, I also need to say thanks to everybody who supported me during my master studies in University of Indonesia (Philosophy, 1998-2003) and Universiteit van Amsterdam (Film Studies, 2007-2008), particularly:
Prof. Pamela Pattynama (my UvA supervisor),  Dr. Agus Nugroho (my UI supervisor),  my lecturers at UvA (Dr. Michael Wedel, Prof. Patricia Pisters, Prof. Dr. Thomas Elsaessers, Dr. Marie Lous Baronian, Dr. Tarja Laine), my lecturers and academic leaders  at UI (Prof. Dr. Toety Heraty, Prof. Dr. Soerjanto Poespowardojo; Dr. Achyar Lubis, Dr. Harsyawibawa, Prof. Dr. Mulyadi Kertanegara), my fellow master students at UI and UvA (particularly Sarah Levitt, Amir Vodka, Raluca Iacob), Koestraat gang, ESQ Europan Alumnae, and people who gave me reference letters (Dr. Haryatmoko, Riri Riza, Nia Dinata, Dr. Minal Aidin).
Also, thanks to Amsterdam Merit Scholarship (UvA) and Putra Jethmal Foundation and Orlow Seunke for giving me the educational funding while i was studying in Amsterdam. Thank you! 

Monday, April 30, 2018

It's Official!

It's official! I am now  a DR. E.
The official letter was sent in April 23rd.
Thank you, all!

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Monday, April 16, 2018

Film Tourism Indonesian Style: The Cases of Laskar Pelangi and Eat Pray Love

by Ekky Imanjaya & Indra Kusumawardhana

COMMUNICARE Journal Vol 3 No 2 (2016).
Published: 21/03/2018


Film-induced tourism becomes a new emerging issue in tourism and scholarly research for the last 10 years. London’s “Harry Potter” series and New Zealand’s “Lord of the Rings” are among the best practices of the trend. On the other hand, Indonesia is a country with many beautiful places to visit by both local and international tourists. The number of visitors increases significantly every year. However, there is no contribution from film industry, both from local or international production, related to this increasing numbers of tourists, not before national movie production “Laskar Pelangi, 2008” (Rainbow Troops, 2008) by Riri Riza, and international box office movie production “Eat, Pray Love, 2010”. The study research will discuss about film induced tourism issues in Indonesia, particularly on why and how the two films--so far, until recently, only those two films--became phenomenon in film tourism--and why other films did not.

Download for free:  

Friday, April 6, 2018

"Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts" with Introduction and Q&A, Bristol, 24/4

'Marlina: women and gender issues in Indonesia'
Film Screening of "Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts" with Introduction and Q&A
Rating: 15+
Watershed, Bristol, Tuesday, 24 April 2016, 18.00
With: Hana A Satriyo (expert on Gender and Women’s participation)
Ekky Imanjaya (PhD candidate in Film Studies at University of East Anglia/Lecturer at Bina Nusantara University).
Considered one of the most significant films to emerge from Indonesia in recent years, female director Mouly Surya '"Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts" deals with multiple layers of gender and women issues within the country, through the vehicle of, as critic Maggie Lee puts it, “female-driven journey of vengeance and justice” which tells a story about “… a revenge fantasy rooted in Indonesia’s gender conditions, complex regional culture and the stark beauty of its landscapes” (Variety, 26/5 2017).
Labelled as pioneering a new genre called “Satay Western”, the film was selected and screened at 2017 Cannes Film Festival’s Director Fortnight. It traveled around many film festivals all over the world and got some prestigious awards such as Best actress ( Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival), Best Director (Netpac Award, Five Flavours Film Festival), Grand Prize (Tokyo FILMeX2017), Special Mention (Jogja-NETPAC Asian Film Festival 2017), and Best scenario ( Festival International du Film de Femmes de SalĂ©).

To celebrate both the film's theatrical release in the UK and Kartini Day (21st April is the anniversary of the birth of Raden Ajeng Kartini, one of Indonesian's first feminists), the Watershed has organized a discussion event on contemporary women and gender issues within Indonesian and Southeast Asian national contexts. Hana A Satriyo and Ekky Imanjaya will give the introduction and hold a Q&A session covering a range of women and gender issues, ranging from the patriarchal cultures in general to the roles of women in Indonesian film industry.
All are welcome.
Buy the tickets here (Tue, 24/4, 6pm):
More details about the screenings of "Marlina" in Watershed
Co-organized by Ekky Imanjaya & Toby Reynolds

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Mengenang Encing Benyamin Sueb

Oleh: Ekky Imanjaya

Sebagian dari tulisan ini dimuat di majalah Matra edisi September 2004,
Tulisan ini dimuat dalam buku A to Z about Indonesian Film"

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"Gue mau dong rekaman kayak penyanyi beneran" ungkap Benyamin Sueb kepada Harry Sabar, di tahun 1992. Maka, bersama Harry Sabar, Keenan Nasution, Odink Nasution, dan Aditya, jadilah band Al-Haj dengan album Biang Kerok. Inilah band dan album terakhir Benyamin. "Di lagu itu, entah kenapa, Ben menyanyi seperti berdoa, khusuk.Coba saja dengar Ampunan," jelas Harry, sang music director. "Mungkin sudah tahu kalau hidupnya tinggal sebentar," imbuhnya. Memang betul, setelah album itu keluar, Benyamin sakit keras, dan rencana promosi ditunda-dan tak pernah lagi terwujud kecuali beberapa pentas. Di album ini, Benyamin menyanyi dengan "serius". Tetapi, lagi-lagi, seserius apa pun, tetap saja orang-orang yang terlibat tertawa terpingkal-pingkal saat Benyamin rekaman lagu I’m a Teacher dan Kisah Kucing Tua dengan penuh improvisasi. Sementara lagu Dingin Dingin Dimandiin dan Biang Kerok bernuansa cadas. Dan Ampunanmu kental dengan progressive rock, diantaranya nuansa Watcher of the Sky dari Genesis era Peter Gabriel.
Yang menarik, masih menurut Harry, saat Benyamin menonton Earth, Wind, and Fire di Amerika-saat menjenguk anaknya yang kuliah disana-dia langsung komentar:"Nyanyi yang kayak gitu, asyik kali ye?", dan nuansa itu pun hadir di beberapa lagu di album itu, salah satunya dengan sedikit sentuhan Lady Madonna dari The Beatles.
Agaknya semua media sudah memuat profil, prstasi, dan kelegendarisan sang Ikon betawi ini.. Lantas, apa yang tersisa. Ape ye yang tersisa dari budayawan betawi yang wafat 5 September 1995 ini?
Seniman asli Betawi kelahiran Kemayoran, 5 Maret 1939 ini main film dengan judul yang menjual namanya--sedikit sekali film di Indonesia yang menjual nama bintangnya, tercatat diantaranya Benyamin, Bing Slamet,Ateng, dan Bagyo. Judulnya, antara lain Benyamin Biang Kerok (Nawi Ismail, 1972), Benyamin Brengsek (Nawi Ismail, 1973), Benyamin Jatuh Cinta (Syamsul Fuad, 1976), Benyamin Raja Lenong (Syamsul Fuad, 1975), Benyamin Si Abunawas (Fritz Schadt, 1974), Benyamin Spion 025 (Tjut Jalil, 1974), Traktor Benyamin (Lilik Sudjio, 1975), Jimat Benyamin (Bay Isbahi, 1973), dan Benyamin Tukang Ngibul (Nawi Ismail,1975).Dia juga main di film seperti Ratu Amplop (Nawi Ismail, 1974), Cukong Blo'on (Hardy, Chaidir Djafar, 1973),Tarsan Kota (Lilik Sudjio, 1974),Samson Betawi (Nawi Ismail, 1975), Tiga Janggo (Nawi Ismail, 1976)--,Tarsan Pensiunan (Lilik Sudjio, 1976), Zorro Kemayoran (Lilik Sudjoi, 1976). Sementara Intan Berduri (Turino Djunaidi, 1972) membuat dirinya, dan Rima Melati, meraih Piala Citra 1973, selain karena Si Doel Anak Modern yang digarap Sjuman DJaya.
Benyamin juga membuat perusahaan sendiri bernama Jiung Film--diantara produksinya Benyamin Koboi Ngungsi (Nawi Ismail, 1975)--bahkan menyutradarai Musuh Bebuyutan (1974) dan Hippies Lokal (1976).
Tetapi, jangan salah, Encing Ben tidak menjadi bintang utama di setiap filmnya. Seperti layaknya semua orang,ada proses dimana Encing Ben "hanya" menjadi figuran atau paling mentok actor pembantu. Dalam hal ini, paling tidak ada dua nama yang patut disebut, yaitu Bing Slamet dan Sjuman Djaya. Walau sudah merintis karir sebagai "bintang film" lewat film perdananya, Banteng Betawi (Nawi Ismail,1971) yang merupakan lanjutan dari Si Pitung (Nawi Ismail, 1970), tetapi kedua nama besar itulah yang mempertajam kemampuan akting Encing BenDalam "berguru" dengan Bing Slamet, Benyamin tidak saja bekerja sama dalam hal musik-seperti dalam lagu Nonton Bioskop dan Brang Breng Brong. Tapi dalam hal film pun dilakoninya. Terlihat dengan jelas, di film Ambisi (Nya Abbas Acup, 1973) -sebuah "komidi musikal" yang diotaki oleh Bing Slamet-Benyamin menjadi teman sang actor utama, Bing Slamet menjadi penyiar Undur-Undur Broadcasting. Di film ini, sudah terlihat gaya "asal goblek" Encing yang penuh improvisasi dan memancing tawa. Di sini, dia berduet dengan Bing Slamet lewat lagu Tukang Sayur. Tetapi, sebenarnya, setahun sebelumnya, Encing Ben juga diajak ikutan main Bing Slamet Setan Djalanan (Hasmanan, 1972). Karena itulah, saat sahabatnya itu wafat pada 17 Desember 1974, Encing Ben tak dapat menahan tangisnya.Dengan Sjuman Djaya, Encing Ben diajak main Si Doel Anak Betawi (Sjuman Djaya, 1973).
Dirinya menjadi ayah si Doel, yang diperankan oleh Rano Karno kecil. Perannya serius tapi, seperti stereotipe orang Betawi, kocak dan tetap "asal goblek".
Adegan terdasyat film ini adalah saat pertemuan antara abang-adik yang diperankan olehs Benyamin dan Sjuman Djaya sendiri, terlihat ketegangan dan kepiawaian akting keduanya yang mampu mengaduk-aduk emosi penonton. Talenta itu direkam oleh ayah dari Djenar Maesa Ayu dan Aksan Syuman, dan dua tahun kemudian Encing Ben pun main film sekuelnya, Si Doel Anak Modern (Sjuman Djaya, 1975). Kali ini Encing Ben menjadi bintang utamanya, dan meraih Piala Citra!Yang menarik, lebih dari dua puluh tahun kemudian Rano Karno membuat versi sinetronnya. Castingnya nyaris sama: Rano sebagai Si Doel, Benyamin sebagai ayahnya-selain theme songnya dan settingnya yang hanya diubah sedikit saja.
Lagi-lagi Encing Ben menjadi actor pendukung, tapi kehadirannya sungguh bermakna.Sebenarnya ada satu lagi film yang dirinya bukan aktor utama, tetapi sangat dominan bahkan namanya dijadikan subjudul atawa tagline: Benyamin vs Drakula. Film itu adalah Drakula Mantu, karya si Raja Komedi Nyak Abbas Akub tahun 1974). Film bergenre komedi horor itu "memaksa" Encing Ben beradu akting dengan Tan Tjeng Bok, si actor tiga zaman.Begitulah, meski beberapa pernah tidak "menjabat" sebagai actor utama, tetapi kehadirannya mencuri perhatian penonton saat itu.
Tidak selamanya kegiatan Encing Ben ada di dunia seni budaya. Encing Ben selepas dari SMA Taman Madya Jakarta (1958), melanjutkan ke Akademi Bank Jakarta, tapi tidak tamat.
Anak bungsu yang pernah bercita-cita menjadi pilot-tapi dilarang ibunya-itu pernah juga Krusus Lembaga Pembinaan Perusahaan dan Pembinaan Ketatalaksanaan (1960), Latihan Dasar Kemiliteran Kodam V Jaya (1960), Kursus Administrasi Negra (1964). Pernah juga jadi pedagang roti dorong, Kondektur Bus trayek Lapangan Banteng-Pasar Rumput (1959), Bagian Amunisi Peralatan AD (1959-1960), Bagian Musk Kodam V Jaya (1957-1969), dan Kepala Bagian Perusahaan Daerah Kriya Jaya (1960-1969).
Tapi, semua itu tidak membuatnya surut untuk menjadi seorang entertainer sejati di Indonesia. Sebab, baginya: "Kepuasan adalah suatu kemunduran". Sepertinya, Indonesia masih saja kehilangan sosok Encing Benyamin yang wafat 5 September, 9 tahu lalu. Indonesia masih saja mencari sosok budayawan yang menghibur sekaligus mendidik bangsa.Jadi, tepat dong kalau, mengutip salah satu kaosnya: "Wanted: Benyamin Sueb, Biang Kerok!"

Sayup-sayup, dari salah satu stasiun swasta, terdengar Encing Ben bernyanyi sendu tapi tetap mengundang tawa di film Tiga Djanggo:
"Djanggo pintar pintar bodo
Djanggo tidak suka baso
Djanggo suka ngangon kebo
Djanggo kalau tidur ngigo"

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Mengapa Film Warkop DKI Reborn Menarik Minat Banyak Penonton?

link: Mengapa Film Warkop DKI Reborn Menarik Minat Banyak Penonton?

Saya diwawancara Tempo soal fenomena Warkop Reborn 2 yang menembus angka 2 juta penonton dalam 5 hari saja.

Saya diwawancara panjang lebar, termasuk membahas soal nostalgia dalam konteks film cult (mass cult, cult blockbuster) termasuk soal kutipan (seperti ditekankan oleh Umberto Eco saat membahas Casablanca) dan memakai referensi2 adegan film warkop dan film lain (Seperti Rhoma Irama), tapi sayangnya tidak muncul.

Apa perlu saya tulis sendiri aja kali ya? :)