Soe Hok Gie is an activist who lived in the sixties. Set in the darkest era of Indonesian modern history, GIE is an interpretation of what happened based on his journal. He is a history student when his world stretches between politics and personal life. A critical young man, he sounds his great concerns about his collapsing nation. Yet, he is sensitive and romantic. He loves to explore the mountains, to admire the great beauty of nature. His life is a clash between the high drama of national political events and the small world of friendship and romance. He is falling apart when he sees that his constant battle for justice and truth gives labor to another dictatorial regime, and caused the massacre of millions suspected communists, including his childhood friend. He continues to fight but his uncompromised idealism drives people away. His best friends left him. The woman he loves rejects him. From time to time, nature is a place where Gie finds peace and it's where his life comes to ... Written by
Soe Hok Gie:
The history of the world is one of oppression. The question is, can there be history without oppression or without sadness and betrayal? It's like, when studying history, the only thing we find is betrayal. It is there, in each and every part of our life, and yet we can do nothing about it. How very tragic this is. But "life is suffering," so says the Buddha, and people cannot escape from it.
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"Gie" is a satisfying multidimensional story about a unique and complex Indonesian political activist
"Gie" is a movie based on the true story of the young Indonesian student activist Soe Hok Gie (1942-1969). He was a vocal, idealistic, often angry voice criticizing the government of Soekarno in the 1960's. The movie follows the life of Gie from childhood, showing the influences that shaped his uncompromising character. His early days as a schoolboy already shows signs of an unyielding will, especially in the face of unjust authority. Gie kept a diary of his thoughts and opinions, which forms the backbone of this film. He was a voracious reader, and was especially attracted to the existentialist thinking of Albert Camus. He was also a prodigious and articulate writer, penning countless critiques of the government, both as a student and later as a lecturer at the prestigious University of Indonesia. His diary is full of musings on different aspects of life. He led student anti-government rallies. Yet at heart he is a patriot, ultimately concerned with the well being of Indonesia and its poorest citizens. His untimely death at 26 due to accidental poisoning by noxious fumes from the Semeru mountain in Java ended a life of prodigious output. The movie does not reveal merely the political aspect of his life, but also poetry, love, and his passionate dedication to a self-examined life. At almost three hours long, it does not feel dull and at the end the viewer is cinematic ally satisfied. It reminds me of the intensely emotional dramas of Martin Scorsese, in particular the recent "Aviator". In technical respects the movie does not quite reach those heights, but it has the same intimate personal feel. You know from watching this film that the Director is passionate about the material. The cinematography is gorgeous, especially in the outdoor and mountain scenes. It is not perfect, some scenes feel a bit long, and some of the acting is uneven, but on the whole it is highly recommended, especially for young Indonesians striving for a sense of national identity and purpose in their lives.
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