Indonesian film again received appreciation from international films community, this time the work of Indonesia’s famous director Mouly Surya, Marlina si Pembunuh Dalam Empat Babak (Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts) became the only Indonesian film that competed in the biggest and most prestigious film event, 2019 Academy Awards. Marlina set out to side with another film in the 91st Best Foreign Language Oscar category. The film ‘Marlina the Killer in the Four Chapters’ will be sent for the Best Foreign Language Film category.
Chairperson of the Indonesian Film Selection Committee, Christine Hakim, delivered the matter in Jakarta, Tuesday (18/9). The winner of this category will be announced on the evening of the 2019 Oscar at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles on February 24.
“After a careful assessment based on the criteria that have been determined, the Indonesian Academy Awards Selection Committee sets a film entitled Marlina the Killer in the Four Acts,” said Christine Hakim.
When announced, Christine stated that the decision had been taken in accordance with the Foreign Language 2018 guidelines and regulations from the Academy of Motion Arts and Sciences (AMPAS).
A number of these conditions are that the submitted film must have aired from 1 October 2017 to 30 September 2018 at least seven days in commercial cinemas in the country of origin, while broadcasts in the United States are not required.
Other requirements are submitted films that must have been shown to the non-cinema public before commercial releases, such as airing at festival events. In addition, subtitles or English subtitles are required to be in the film submitted to AMPAS.
“It is important to underline, this is not the selection of films such as festivals, but we choose the right one,” said Christine Hakim.
The selection committee is said to have started choosing films that will be sent to Oscars since last August. The committee was formed by PPFI, which was supported by the Ministry of Education and Culture’s Film Development Center consisting of 13 people and chaired by artist and producer Christine Hakim
Members of the committee included Alim Sudio, Benni Setiawan, Christine Hakim, Fauzan Zidni, Firman Bintang, Hardo Sukoyo, Yenny Rahman, Marcella Zalianty, Mathias Muchus, Roy Lolang, Thoersi Argeswara, Yudi Datau, and Zairin Zain.
The film, directed by Mouly Surya, tells the story of a widow in Sumba, Marlina, played by Marsha Timothy.
One day in a savannah in Sumba, Indonesia, a group of seven robbers came to Marlina’s house. They threaten lives, property and honor Marlina in front of her husband who is already mummified, sitting in a corner of the room.
Through a story idea from senior Indonesian filmmaker Garin Nugroho, Mouly bandaged Marlina’s story with a thick Sumba community culture. The fiction film is polished again in the style of the Western genre.
The journey of ‘Marlina’ is called quite long. Initially, Marlina became the first Indonesian film to receive prestigious subsidies from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the French Ministry of Culture, Cinema du Monde.
Until finally, this film project was selected in the Asian Project Market at the Busan International Festival 2015, South Korea and the cinefondation of L’Ateller Cannes Film Festival 2, and advanced to various festivals.
The film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in May last year, then aired at the New Zealand International Film Festival and the Melbourne Film Festival in August 2017. A month later, the film aired at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Afterwards, the film returned to wander at a number of international film festivals including the Vancouver International Film Festival held in September and October, the Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival and the Busan International Film Festival held in October 2017. Marlina the Murderer in the Four Acts already premiered in Indonesia on November 16, 2017.