Film Review: Soekarno


Title: Soekarno
Director: Hanung Bramantyo
Story writer: Ben Sihombing
Actors: Ario Bayu, Lukman Sardi, Maudy Koesnaedi, Tika Bravani
Genre: Historical Drama
Language: Indonesian (English sub)

I honestly put a lot of expectation before I watch this film. The list of actors, the well known producer, and the theme itself has given me a lot of hope when I bought the ticket. However, I should have learned from my own experience that only high hope could bring someone to such a disappointment. And let me tell you why.

It is the attention to detail that was missing from the story. The lack of historical research about things that happen during world war period is quite crucial for me. I will give you the examples of things that really bothers me during the film, but it would be a little bit of spoiler. So if you want to know what it was, or if you have seen the film and you didn’t find anything wrong with it, you could drag your mouse to read the spoiler. If you don’t want to read it, skip it.

1. When Soekarno did the oration in front of his public he mentioned that the wage of the indonesian labour was xx rupiah. Rupiah wasn’t found before 1948, few years after Indonesian independence. During the Dutch colonialism, Indonesia use Gulden as the currency.
2. Throughout the film everybody mentioned Japan with Nippon. Except in one scene where Hatta mentioned “Jepang” instead of Nippon. 

I really think this film needs to be focused on what it want to deliver to the audience. It must be specifically targeted and marketed. You could not expect that you could attract the female teenager audience with the triangle romance between Inggit, Soekarno, and Fatmawati, and at the same time to attract the history enthusiast by promising them a colossal drama.

They are lucky that big names were willing to participate in this film, such as my favourite actor Lukman Sardi. It was taken as a promise of a good quality film, an not just a box office film that earned the cash by its controversy. It could be great. It could be even greater. It has got its sentiment, and the theme is very much wanted by the people of this country. Soekarno himself is a great figure, everybody wanted to see him in a film.

But this film disappointed me. It did greatly.

However would I suggest my friends to watch it?

It gave me a great moral dissonance. In a way, this is a crappy film. But in another way, it could give an insight to our own national history. Since I know most of my friends probably couldn’t care less to what happen in this republic, I want them to see how difficult it was to get in here. I want them to feel the struggle. I want them to get the essence of the history and the importance of knowing it.

But I don’t want to recommend crappy films.

So I should leave it to anyone. I would rate it 3 out of 10.


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