Directed by Aziz M. Osman 

Malaysia | 2017 | 73 min | English/Malay/Mandarin/Hokkien/Tamil | Drama

Spanning over six episodes, Anak Merdeka chronicles the lives of three friends – Salleh, Boon and Devi – beginning from the time Malaysia struggled for its independence right through to the 21st century.

Set in a funfair, where these three friends first meet, the journey of their story interweaves with our nation’s key historical moments and events over the course of 60 years. Their story is the nation’s story.

Episode 1:

Three kids -Saleh, Boon and Devi observe a village descend into mayhem when the donations collected for the Chief Minister’s trip to gain Malaysia’s independence in London go missing. Things get even more chaotic as people start pointing fingers, and only the three children can save the day.


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Director, producer, and actor Aziz M. Osman was born in Singapore on October 2, 1962. He began his career in the film industry as a child actor and won Best Child Actor in Sayang Anakku Sayang at the 22nd Asia Film Festival South Korea, 1976. He also has an array of awards to his name for the films and television series he directed such as XXRAY (Film), Leftenan Adnan (Film), Puteri (TV series), and Cili Padi (TV series). 

He has been involved in a number of other areas of the Malaysian film industry as well, having been a producer, screenwriter and editor.  He is currently the director general of AceMotion Pictures Sdn Bhd.

ANAK MERDEKA: EPISODE 1 (MALAYSIA)
THU, 26 OCT/ 10AM
MAMESHIBA (幼獣マメシバ) (JAPAN)
THU, 26 OCT/ 8PM

Directed by Kamei Toru

Japan | 2009 | 106min | Japanese | Drama

 

Jiro is an unemployed 32-year-old who stays with his parents and pursues the life of a recluse. After the death of his father, his mother runs away and leaves behind a Shiba Inu puppy named Ichiro as well as some clues to her location. Along with his new canine companion, Jiro is forced to venture out into the world, setting off on a path to independence rife with quirky encounters. 

 

Adapted from a popular television series, this touching story of man’s best friend is the first of a movie trilogy.

 

 

Image Credits: © 2009 “MAMESHIBA” PRODUCTION COMMITTEE


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Kamei Toru was born in 1969 in Japan. His notable works include the Mameshiba trilogy, a touching story of man’s best friend adapted from a popular television series. Besides directing, he also has experience in producing and screenwriting.

Directed by Abu Shahed Emon

Bangladesh | 2014 | 121 min | Bengali | Drama

 

Just as Moses was found in the river Nile, an infant is rescued from a river, and adopted by Miraj, Karim and Sajib in turns over the years, only to be abandoned at the various stages of his life. From innocence to becoming a gangster, the unpredictable currents of Jalal’s journey prove that he is truly a child of the river.


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Abu Shahed Emon is a young Bangladeshi independent filmmaker, who graduated in Psychology from the University of Dhaka. His interest in filmmaking stems from his active involvement in the Dhaka University Film Society Movement, which later on led him to make several short films, documentaries and TV fictions, which have been acclaimed both at home and abroad. His recently completed debut feature film project, Jalal’s Story, has travelled more than 20 international film festivals and received several awards. Jalal’s Story was also selected to represent Bangladesh in the 88th Academy Awards 2015 in the foreign language film Category.

JALAL’S STORY (জালালের গল্প/
JALALER GOLPO) (BANGLADESH)
FRI, 27 OCT/ 11AM
PEDRO PÁRAMO (MEXICO)
FRI, 27 OCT/ 2:30PM

Directed by Carlos Velo

Mexico | 1967 | 110 min | Spanish | Drama/Fantasy/Horror

 

Based on the novel of the same name Juan Rulfo, Pedro Páramo tells the story of a man named Juan Preciado, who travels to his recently deceased mother's hometown, Comala, to find his father – only to come across a literal ghost town – populated, that is, by spectral figures. 

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Carlos Velo was a Spanish film director who directed 45 films between 1934 and 1983. His 1956 film Torero! was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. 

Directed by Jan Hřebejk

Czech Republic | 2000 | 123 min | Czech/German | Comedy/Drama/War

This dramatic story of a hero against his will is set in a small Czech town occupied by German forces during the last years of the Second World War. Josef and Marie are a childless couple who yearn for a baby; unfortunately, he is sterile. One day they meet David, a young Jewish man and former neighbour recently escaped from a concentration camp, to whom they give refuge in their home.

 

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Jan Hřebejk (b. 1967, Prague) is one of the Czech Republic’s most prolific and versatile film directors. His debut Big Beat (1993) won the very first Czech lion awards for Best Picture and Best Direction. Cosy Dens, which competed at KVIFF in 1999, and Pupendo (2003) feature among the biggest hits of post-revolution Czech cinema. Hřebejk was nominated for an Academy Award for the war tragicomedy Divided We Fall (2000), and received another Czech lion for Best Director. Since filming Kawasaki’s Rose (2009), he has opted for more weighty moral and social themes. Two of his films have been in the main competition at Karlovy Vary in the past decade: Beauty in Trouble (2006, Special Jury Prize) and Honeymoon (2013, Best Director).

DIVIDED WE FALL (MUSÍME SI POMÁHAT) (CZECH REPUBLIC)
FRI, 27 OCT/ 5PM
APPRENTICE (SINGAPORE)
FRI, 27 OCT/ 8PM

Directed by Boo Junfeng

Singapore | 2016 | 96 min | Malay/English | Drama

 

Aiman, a 28-year-old correctional officer, is transferred to the territory’s top prison. He strikes up a friendship with Rahim, who is revealed to be the chief executioner of the prison, and one of the world’s most prolific. Can Aiman overcome his conscience and a past that haunts him to become the executioner’s apprentice?


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Boo Junfeng made his feature-length directorial debut in 2010 with Sandcastle, which premiered at the International Critics’ Week at Cannes Film Festival. The film was subsequently invited to film festivals including Toronto, Pusan, Vancouver and London, among others. It won several awards, including Best Film, Best Director and NETPAC Jury Award at the Vietnam International Film Festival, Best Cinematography and Special Jury Mention at the Gotham Screen International Film Festival, Best Local Film & Best Local Director at the Singapore Entertainment Awards 2011, and was listed by The Wall Street Journal as one of Asia’s most notable films of 2010.

Trained in film schools in Singapore and Spain, Boo Junfeng's award-winning short films include Un Retrato De Familia (2005), Stranger (2005), The Changi Murals (2006), Katong Fugue (2007), Keluar Baris (2008) and Tanjong Rhu (2009). In 2009, he became the first recipient of the McNally Award for Excellence in the Arts – the valedictorian honour of Lasalle College of the Arts. He was also conferred the Young Artist Award in 2009, and the Singapore Youth Award in 2011 by the government of Singapore.

Directed by Adriyanto Dewo

Indonesia | 2014 | 107 min | Bahasa Indonesia | Drama

 

Hans, a young man from Serui, Papua, has a dream of becoming a professional football player. Yet fate has a different agenda, when Hans almost loses his will to live he meets Mak, owner of a humble Minangnese restaurant (lapau). In the midst of their differences, Hans and Mak find their similarities. Dreams and the passion for living are once more ignited in Hans through food and cooking - food is the goodwill that unites them.

 

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Adriyanto Dewo (b. 13th December 1983) graduated from the Faculty of Film and Television, Jakarta Institute of Arts. In 2008 he directed his graduation project—a black-and-white short film titled The Storyteller. In 2010, his second short film, Nyanyian Para Pejuang Sunyi (Song of the Silent Heroes) earned him the Best Director award at the 6th Indonesian Film Festival in Melbourne, Australia. In 2013, he directed Menunggu Warna (Waiting for Colors) that won him two awards : best short film in Europe on Screen short film competition 2014 and Best Short Film in Hanoi International Film Festival 2014. His first feature film, Tabula Rasa, a family drama exploring the anthropology of food and how it interconnects different people and relationships, won him Best Director at the Indonesian Film Festival 2014.

TABULA RASA (INDONESIA)
SAT, 28 OCT/ 2:30PM
SONG OF TIBET (YESHE DOLMA) (CHINA)
SAT, 28 OCT/ 11AM

Directed by Xie Fei

China | 2000 | 104 min | Mandarin/Tibetan | Drama

After a romantic relationship fails, a young girl from Beijing returns home to Tibet. It is then that she discovers the colourful, tumultuous and adventurous life of her grandmother during her young days where she was involved with three different men, two of whom were in conflict with each other over her. The young girl discovers that happiness in life is, after all, all about acceptance and going with the flow.

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Professor Xie Fei was born in 1942 and entered Beijing Film Academy in 1960. He has worked as a teacher in the directing department since 1965. An important figure in Chinese “4th Generation” Directors, his works have won numerous domestic and international awards, including a Golden Bear for Women from the Lake of Scented Souls (1993) and a Silver Bear for Black Snow (1990) from Berlin. In recent years he has devoted himself to art film promotion and public film education, working as supervisor for many low-budget art films by new directors. He won the CILECT Teaching Award in 2015.

Directed by Mamat Khalid

Malaysia | 2016 | 119 min | Malay | Comedy

Rock band Rimba Bara continues to struggle in the music industry that is full of political games. Meanwhile, Jijoe comes across rock queen Ella in a recording studio and falls in love with her. Jijoe loves her so much that he is willing to leave behind his rock music life and become an F-class contractor so that he will have a more secure life. This causes Rimba Bara to fall apart and various conflicts arise.

 

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Mamat Khalid was born on 6 April 1963 in Ipoh, Perak. As a young boy, he used to go to the cinemas every other day to catch the latest movies. Before venturing into film-making, Mamat worked in a government office. He is a fan of rock music, having joined an amateur band named Drop Out in 1986 where he was the band's keyboardist. The experiences that he had went through during this phase inspired him to write and direct his 2005 film Rock, in which its commercial success led into two sequels - Rock Ooo…! (2013) and Rock Bro! (2016). He cites the late director P. Ramlee as one of his filmmaking heroes.

ROCK BRO! (MALAYSIA)
SAT, 28 OCT/ 8PM