Sunday, September 5, 2010

Love Stanza (my first attempt at poetry)

'Twas a bright sunny day; but with the breeze, the heat is abated
That you first came into my life; by chance? or was it fated?
It was poetry in motion, that left me captivated

Something about you sets my heart aglow
Was it an instinct? a hunch? I cannot know
But I was taken by you from the word go

There's something about you (not Mary!); that have me spellbound
'Twas in your sanguinity & uninhibited character; and the cheeky warmth that is abound
And that fiery and brave spirit in standing your ground

Though that most strong women; preferred even stronger men
I do wish that for me; you make an exception
For eventhough I am gentle and meek outside; internally I am a man of great ambition & intention

It was written in the stars; by Allah's decree
You are not perfect; yet are good enough to complete me
I am very grateful that I have met thee

So, please, dear woman, a chance, perhaps, to prove my worthiness?
To prove that I can fill your life with happiness
To help navigate you through this life of uncertainty and craziness

Oh my dear; I do wish you would accept my feelings
Because it's been a while since I have been eating (but thank God I am still drinking!)
Dont leave me hanging here; dont leave me reeling

I will always work hard to be the man of your dreams
Although I am imperfect; I will never stop trying to be the top of the cream
I will never rest on my laurels; nor will stop at the seams

Oh, the woman of my dreams; the object of my affection
If you say yes; then I will be a very happy man; free off affliction
And my life will be filled with more conviction

Yet even if you say no; or you have met someone better
I will not begrudge you; nor I will be bitter
I will pray for your happiness; and hope you have...a better future

For if it turns out that it was not written in the stars; as I had predicted
There is a silver lining in all that Allah has decreed
Dont be down in the dumps just because you had been rejected

Rejection doesnt mean that you are useless or weak
It's just an issue of compatibility; and not of anyone's mistake
To be better with each relationship; so that eventually you will find someone suitable to your own make

I think I have go on for too long
Any more longer than I might just write a song
Thank you if you are still reading this (cant find any word that rhymes with ong)

Dont be worried if you are still single
Because Allah is just giving you the opportunity to mingle
Until one day you find that special somebody that sets your heart a-jingle

So, my friends, never lose hope, never lose heart, never lose trust
There is someone out there for each of us
May we all achieve happiness..Allah bless us!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Movie Review: Sang Pemimpi

Assalamualaikum & good morning.

"Bermimpilah, maka Tuhan akan memeluk mimpi-mimpimu"

"Ayahku, ayah juara satu seluruh dunia

On 2010 New Year's Eve, I watched Sang Pemimpi (SP), an Indonesian movie based on a novel by the same name at the cinema. The delay in seeing SP was on purpose, because I prefer the queue for tickets to thin out quite a bit.

To say that SP is a good movie is an understatement. It is a brilliant movie, by a mile. One of the most memorable movies I have watched in 2009.

I have read the book by Andrea Hirata (AH), a brilliant masterpiece by its own accord and IMO the best book of the Laskar Pelangi tetralogy, and was curious as to what direction would producer Mira Lesmana (MR) & director Riri Riza (RR) take in transferring SP to the silver screen. MR & RR had always impressed me, ever since when I first saw their work as co-producers to Rudy Soedjarwo's Ada Apa Dengan Cinta.

MR & RR has done it again. Where Laskar Pelangi the movie has some kinks here & there (otherwise a good movie), SP is nearly faultless. MR & RR hit all the right notes, from the word go.

Some creative licence is always needed whenever a book adapted to a movie. You cant transfer all the ideas brick by brick, because what might work in the books might not work in the movies. The most important thing is the director is able to capture the book's essence and spirit in the movie. In this respect the movie doesn't disappoint.

SP is about daring to dream in the face of adversity, the importance of education & hardwork, the love between father & son, a teacher's role. The bittersweet love of the younger folks.

The camerawork is spectacular. I like the way that the camera is constantly changing it's focus, panning out from background view to the immediate view & vice-versa. The angles that the camerawork use are brilliant. Because every object has it's role in the movie. Some has symbolic meanings. In some scenes, no dialogue is needed. e.g. The dousing of fire and the releasing of the monkey at Arai's home...of moving on and cutting his ties with his past.

MR & RR's attention to detail is astounding. SP being a period piece (set in the 80's and 90's), they manage to convincingly recreate that time period.
The old rickety bicycles, the worn-out calendars, the weather-beaten name planks, the clothing, the hustle-bustle of a shanty town with people walking and cycling in the background, the old motorbikes...all managed to create that engrossing environment.

Music is also used effectively. It was never intrusive, and complement the scenes quite well, especially in the heart-touching scenes of Ikal and his father.

The acting is top-notch. All of the important characters are played convincingly by the actors. Especially: Ahmad Saifullah as the teenage Arai, Azwir Fitrianto as the teenage Jimbron, Mathias Muchus as Seman (Ikal's father), and Jay Widjajanto as Bang Zaitun. Arai was what I imagined him to be: roguish impish character but with a kind heart. Azwir managed to make Jimbron funny & likeable. Jay was spot on as the flamboyant outlandish singer, Bang Zaitun. But Mathias tops it all. His dialogues were few and far in between, but his character as a loving father was expressed by his mannerism & actions, a testament of Bp Mathias' skills as an actor.

And finally, the narrative is superb. The story managed to be: poignant, funny, touching, motivating at different times.

Funny: Jimbron's and Bang Zaitun's character, Arai trying to woo Zakiah Nurmala, the main trio's escapades from Bp Mustar..

Poignant and touching: Arai's intro as an orphan, Ikal's relationship with his father, Nurmi's scene, the friendship between Arai, Ikal, & Jimbron; ...

Motivating and uplifting: the importance of education, the roles of teachers (personified by Bp Mustar and Bp Balia), the desire to dream..

The only gripe I have was that the story felt a little weak in the final 15 minutes. The reaction of Ikal's parents to his letter was a bit out of character compared to the previous scenes, especially for Bp Seman. And the final scenes was a bit draggy (although it did end with a witty line.. ..^^)

But I truly enjoyed Sang Pemimpi.

No other movie have made me cry so earnestly.
No other movie have made me more fond of my father.
No other movie have made me more in touch with my Malay roots.
No other movie have made me more grateful that I have the opportunity to learn and be educated.
No other movie have made me more than ever to want to hope. To have a dream.

To become a Pemimpi like Arai.

That's how good Sang Pemimpi is.

Wassalam.... ^^v