Rahabi Mandra, Aldo Swastia / ID, 2021 / 111 min.
Set in 1947 in the course of 'Operation Product' – known in Indonesia as Agresi Militer Belanda I (Dutch Military Aggression I) – Kadet 1947 depicts the earliest efforts of the Indonesian Air Force in resisting the Dutch reoccupation of Indonesia. This will be the first time Kadet 1947 is screened outside Indonesia. Preceding the film, Arnoud Arps, media and culture scholar (University of Amsterdam), will provide a lecture.
A group of young cadets train to become fighter pilots in Yogyakarta’s suburbs. Tentatively, they learn to overcome mutual differences of opinion and outside threats before they are ready for battle.
Kadet 1947 is one of the many films that centre on the Indonesian National Revolution. The film is based on true events: the first air attack on the only just founded Indonesian air force. Kadet 1947 shows how the National Revolution is remembered in this 'film perjuangan' ('battle film') using old and new themes.
As is the case in many other Indonesian war films Kadet 1947 focuses on what it means to be a hero. In contrast to other films, it deals with the history of military aviation an underexposed aspect of Indonesian popular culture.
The film was written and directed by the young filmmakers Rahabi Mandra and Aldo Swastia, who learned the ropes under the wings of celebrated Indonesian directors such as Hanung Bramantyo and Garin Nugroho. Recently Mandra and Swastia have worked as scriptwriters on films such as Night Bus (2017), Moon Cake Story (2017) and Gokil Teachers (2020).
Lecture by Arnoud Arps
Preceding the film, Arnoud Arps will provide a lecture (in English) on the depiction of the Indonesian National Revolution in Indonesian cinema. Arnoud Arps is a media and culture scholar at the University of Amsterdam and his PhD research focuses on the memories of the Indonesian War of Independence using contemporary Indonesian popular culture.
Rahabi Mandra, Aldo Swastia
Revolusi! at the Rijksmuseum and Revolusi! at Eye: both institutions will introduce you to the Indonesian war of decolonisation. The film museum will screen a programme of Indonesian ‘battle films’ of which some have never been seen in the Netherlands before.
Arnoud Arps is a media and culture scholar at the University of Amsterdam. He will give introductions to several film screenings. For our online magazine, Arps wrote about Indonesian films that deal with the struggle for independence.
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