A Singaporean-made comedy about a group of 18 year old boys who are beginning the mandatory two-year military service in the Singapore army. Despite their different racial and family ...
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A Singaporean-made comedy about a group of 18 year old boys who are beginning the mandatory two-year military service in the Singapore army. Despite their different racial and family backgrounds, they discover many similarities and forge a friendship which would help ease their transition to the tough army routine.Written by
In the last scene, the overhead mic can be seen in most of the shots. See more »
Lost on foreigners
There are a few reviews here, presumably from foreigners, who have blatantly criticized this locally made Singapore movie. I think the format is lost on them because comparisons are made to Platoon. It is not Platoon and doesn't purport to be and doesn't aspire to be. It is a humble simple local movie about a very Singaporean topic so perhaps that itself is already lost on people who have absolutely no idea about life in Singapore.
This movie is based on a popular play about something that touches almost all families in Singapore and that is the mandatory military service (the official name is 'national service - NS for short') which all 18 year old males have to undergo for 2 years (Israel has it too and for both genders so we are not exclusive is that area). NS is dreaded by every male and their parents in this country as they forlorn the loss of those precious 2 years and the rigorous mental and physical routine and training under the humid Singapore sky and constant 30Celsius sun.
Things have changed for the better in the 80s and 90s and when the play came out, it was a big hit because it touched on the lighter side of NS, which up until then, was perceived to be non-existent. Then they made it into a movie and it was an even bigger hit because some of us, like myself, had missed the play due to age and/or ignorance of its existence. I reckon that the joy of watching the movie is lost on foreigners who don't appreciate and/or understand our local humor so naturally you aren't able to enjoy it in the way we do.
The fact that the movie doesn't appeal to you foreigners doesn't mean the movie deserves the negativity (some of which are quite mean-spirited) to which you have been so generous to dispense. Just as how we Singapoeans are able to enjoy British costume dramas and cowboy-and-Indian movies despite of our unfamiliarity with them, the same applies to you. And just like how those costume dramas depict a fact of life in England to which most of us have no first hand knowledge of, Army Daze is a visual documentation (of sorts) on a facet of our way of life here and it would be nice if you could try to enjoy it even if you cannot really appreciate and/or understand it.
Naturally, it isn't Fellini-quality but given the resources they had, the movie has turned out to be a decent piece of entertainment, presumably better than all those B-grade action movies Steven Seagal and the likes of all those other talentless actors churn out - they all the flair and pomp but no substance. We have given the same consideration to Western-made movies since the invention of movies itself and it would be nice if you guys cut us some slack as we try to navigate our way into the world of movie making, Singapore style.
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