Indonesian Movie “Athirah” Received Big Applause in Vancouver


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A prominent Indonesian movie director, Riri Riza, once again made a memorable impression in his latest movie production “Athirah”. The movie which was premiered during Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF), 2 and 3 October 2016, was adopted from novel written by Alberthiene Endah and derived from real life story of  Indonesia’s Vice President’s mother.

The movie highlighted the resiliency shown by the main character named “Athirah” during her greatest challenge to maintain the integrity of her marriage and to raise her children following the act of polygamy by her husband. Depicting South Sulawesi culture, the movie outlined the local wisdom, the role of family and unrelenting efforts of a mother to comfort her children when the family dealt with difficult times.

Despite unfavorable show times, on Sunday, 20.45 and on Monday, 13.00, at Odeon Cineplex of International Village Vancouver, the movie drawn many enthusiasm from the audiences. The movie director, Riri Riza, received high praise as well as many inquiries from the audience. Several inquiries addressed among others are the polygamy custom in Indonesia, culture of Bugis people, movies technicalities, and challenges faced during the movie production.

The audiences in particular were impressed by the background setting of the movie that display the beautiful locations of Makassar, Sengkan, Wajo and Pare-pare, as well as Bugis style garment that was frequently depicted on screen.

To boost the promotion of the film, Indonesian Consulate in Vancouver rallied the officials of the Consulate collectively to attend the premiere, broadcast the information among Indonesian diaspora in Vancouver to increase attendance during premiere, and hosted a meet and greet event between movie director with Indonesian diaspora. According to the movie director, The movie “Athirah” originally launched in Indonesia on September 29th, 2016, and the international premier launched initially in Vancouver, then in Busan and Tokyo.

VIFF is among the five largest film festivals in North America. The festival screens films annually from approximately 70 countries around the world. This year, Riri Riza marked his third times visit in Vancouver to attend the premiere, following the last two premieres for all his movies among which are Eliana-Eliana (2002) and Gie (2005).

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