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Thursday, August 23, 2012

"Found Footage" Documentary Film - Are They Real?


Since 1999, there are numerous of films released and claimed to be the "found footage" from some mysterious and unexplained criminal cases. The victims were never been found, and people - means "the police and relatives" - were still looking for them. The documentary film - that been made by one or several of the deceased - was found at the site of the crime. While we watched the movie, people - again, means "the police and the relatives" - hope someone from the audience can understand the situation and can help to solve the mystery.

The "found footage" film were made use regular handycam and recorded by a very amateur movie maker (it shakes, sometimes blur, too radical close-up, ... just like a very regular home-made documentary film).

Question : Are those films real? I mean, do you believe - or should we believe - the movie is actually a true incident?

Well... if you believe those films are taken from true incidents, then I should congratulate you, because you just being punk'd.

The movies that you saw - with additional lines, such as "found footage" - were actually fake. All of them were truly an entertaining movie that been made in purpose to make people feel deeply about the things that they saw on the screen. "Found footage" has become one of the most favorable genre of movie making (mostly horror). Filming mostly done by the actor themselves as they recite their lines. Shaky or blur camera work is often employed for realism.

This genre was introduced in 1980, when Cannibal Holocaust was released. Directed by Ruggero Deadato and starring Carl Gabriel Yorke, Robert Kerman, and Francesca Ciardi, this Italian film tells the story of a missing documentary film crew who had gone to the Amazon to film cannibal tribes. The crew never been found and presumed dead. Only their film was found and later an American television station wishes to broadcast.

This film has influenced another "found footage" horror film called The Blair Witch Project (1999), and later become the "found footage" genre's landmark in horror film history. Since then, more "found footage" film appeared in theaters. At least  there are 7 - 10 movies been released in United States and about 20 - 30 movies in the world each year.


Today, there are more than hundreds of "found footage" films that been made, and some of them have become cult movies. Most notable "found footage" films are the trilogy of August Underground (2001 - 2004), Cloverfield (2008), the series of Paranormal Activity (2009 - present), The Last Exorcism (2010), Apollo 18 (2011), and Chronicle (2012).
Besides United States, other countries also adapted and produced "found footage" genre movies. Most notable country that also produced this kind of genre is Japan. Koji Shiraishi - Japanese director - has been know as one of the well-known director whose made The Curse (Noroi, 2005), one of the most controversial and the longest play "found footage" genre movie (usually "found footage" film only 75-90 minutes play-length. The Curse has 120 minutes play-length). He also made Occult (2009) and Shirome (2010) in which both are also box office "found footage" genre films in Japan.

Other countries that also made "found footage" documentary films are :
- Australia (Lake Mungo; 2008)
- Singapore (Changi Haunted; 2011)
- Indonesia (Terekam; 2010)
- Spanish (Atrocious and the trilogy of REC; 2007 - 2012)
- Canada (Diary of the Dead; 2007)
- India (Ragini MMS and Love Sex Aur Dhokha; 2011)
- Norway (Trollhunter; 2010)
- Poland (Nawiedzona Polska; 2011)


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Twilight From Sederet.com

Wow.... what a day today...!!!!

Last week, I've been told by Sederet.com that I was chosen as one of the finalist in their Blog Competition. Then on Dec 20, I got a news that... I WON... !!!! Even placed as Runner Up, but I am very happy for the result. I am very appreciate Sederet.com whose chosen me as one of the winner.

And today, I become much more happy to received the prize of the competition : the novel of TWILIGHT. Can't imagine how happy I am. Actually I known Twilight after watched its movie several years ago. I never read the novel myself, especially in original version in English. And today.... wow... amazing.... I got one....!!!!

Last but not least, I would like to say : Thank you, Sederet.com. You are soooo amazing and I am very glad to use your service. I believe, Sederet.com can become The Leader of Online Dictionary in the future. Sederet.com is not only a regular dictionary. It has games, articles, and English lessons. Why need other when this one is already completed?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

This is The Reason Why Sederet.Com is The Most Trustworthy Online Dictionary

Ever found difficulty when you want to know how to say a word in Indonesia or visa verse? Well.... easiest (and in old-fashioned) way, is looking for the word in dictionary. But it is not easy, you know. We have to open page by page, and read soooo many tiny words that takes time. Very frustrating, especially when we are going to write a very long articles.

I also met the same condition several years ago. When wrote some articles in English, I found very difficult to find a "correct" translation from Indonesia words to English. Sometimes the words are there, but can't applicated, so I need to find another words with "similar" meaning.

About 2 years ago, when I search in Google, looking for online dictionary, I found Sederet.com in which placed on the very top of the Google Search List. When entered the web, frankly speaking, I did not quiet like it. The web's design was very simple, with blue and white combination back ground. Very amateur appearance. But when started to use it, I found that Sederet.com is not a simple dictionary web like I thought.

When entering a word, mostly Sederet.com will provide the translation of the words that we want to know, including several synonymous that might be have same meaning or similar meaning. This option give me more understanding about the uses of the words. For example, when I type "Run", the translation appears directly into Indonesia as "Lari". Meanwhile, at the bottom, Sederet.com provide several synonym such as "Tally", "Trial", "Streak", and others in which become a very good input for me.

Since then, I become one of Sederet.com's biggest fan. When I want to look for English dictionary, I will open Sederet.com. And I am very glad that Sederet.com web have improved quiet significant recently (especially its appearance), and become one of the major online dictionary in Indonesia.

Although has improved like today, I found that Sederet.com still not able to translate phrases and short sentences, either from English to Indonesia or visa verse. For example, when I type "BEAT IT" and translate it into Indonesia, it turns out the meaning is "Menumbuknya", in which "menumbuknya" actual mean is "Pound It". You can try to type other short sentences (minimum in 2 words) and most words still incorrectly translated.

Despite of above problem. I found Sederet.com is very helpful for people who just start to learn English or Indonesia  language, because it has a lot of options of translation that help people to understand the meaning of the single words. For example, when I look for the translation of "Mencari", Sederet.com will provide several meaning of the words (depend on the occasion of use), including its synonym.

This is the reason why I still use Sederet.com, because I can learn a lot from the translation of the words that I type in Sederet.com.

To make the web more exciting, interesting, and fun, Sederet.com also can be used thru mobile cellphone. Just type http://m.sederet.com, and it can be used directly, and work on almost all phones with mobile web access. Easier, faster, and can be used anywhere, anytime.

Feel bored after do the translation? There are several Educational Web Games in Sederet.com that also can be played. It is very fun can play several of them that can help to improve my vocabulary. Several games that I played before are : Type & Poop Ballons, Spelling Bee, Word Cross, and Typing Hero. You should try them...!!! It really fun...!!!

Sederet.com also have English Articles. But unfortunately, all articles are only focus on the how to learn English language, such as English Grammar Lessons, Easy Way To Learn English, and others. I think it would be much better if it also consist of the knowledge about Indonesia language (but written in English). This might be helpful for people who eager to learn about Indonesia (the words, the culture, and everything about Indonesia).

When you want to learn deep about English or Indonesian language, you don't have to buy thick dictionary or download any dictionary program. You have Sederet.com. What else you need?

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Famous Restaurant in Indonesia - Rumah Makan Padang

 If one day the officials of The Guiness Book of World Record have time to visit Indonesia, I think they will announced that the world most largest franchise restaurant in the world is Rumah Makan Padang (simply means "Padang Restaurant"). It is true and I can bet on it. According to Ikatan Warung Padang Indonesia (The Indonesia Padang's Restaurant Organization, or simply called IWAPIN), there are about 20,000 Padang restaurant establishment, and the figure is in Jakarta only. There are hundreds of city in Indonesia. Try to count them all.....

Rumah Makan Padang is one of the most well-known restaurant in Indonesia. In every street of every city in Indonesia, you can easily find it. In fact, in every five to six house that you passed, there will be at least one Rumah Makan Padang. So you can imagine, how many of them in all city of Indonesia.

So what is the specialty of Rumah Makan Padang? Why it is so famous in Indonesia?


THE HISTORY OF RUMAH MAKAN PADANG
Padang is the capital city of West Sumatera, with an area about 694.96 square kilometers,with population more than 833,000 people. Besides its beauty scenery, Padang has been well-known for its cuisine which commonly called as Padang cuisine or Minangkabau cuisine (Minangkabau is the other name for Padang). In Indonesia dialect, it's called Masakan Padang or Masakan Minang (Minang's Cuisine).

Masakan Padang is famous for its rich taste of succulent coconut milk and spicy chili, similar with Middle Eastern or India dishes.

In the past (even until today), the city of Padang is not as good as today. A lot of unemployed people from Padang were go to other city to find a better job outside their city and island. That's why they were spreading all around Indonesia city and island. When they arrived in the city, most of them can't eat the cuisine in that place because it is not suitable for them (especially in Java, because most of its cuisine were sweet and less spicy). Eventually, most Padang's male are capable to do the cooking, so they cook the meal for themselves. Somehow, their cooking skill and food admired native. This result is giving idea for Padang's people to open restaurant that sell their origin food in their new place. And since then, Rumah Makan Padang is open widely in every city of Indonesia.


THE MENU OF RUMAH MAKAN PADANG
In the present, there are dozens of menu in Rumah Makan Padang that can be chosen. Most of them are cook using  coconut milk and spicy chili. Every Padang Restaurant served different variant and different taste of meals, depend of their specialty. Despite the variant meals of each restaurant, there are standard and regular menus that always available in every Padang restaurant :

1. Rendang : 
It's made from beef (sometimes chicken, mutton, water buffalo, or duck), slowly cooked in coconut milk, spices, toasted coconut paste, and spices (ginger, galangal, turmeric leaf, lemon grass, and chillies)  for several hours until the liquid almost gone.

2. Nangka / Nangko : 
Literally, Nangka means "jackfruit". Usually it is cooked with the mixture of coconut milk, lemon grass, turmeric, curry powder, and chillies. In some place, they are adding cabbage, long bean, and french bean to make the taste different. Nangka is served together with its thin sauce.

3. Sate Padang : 
Skewered meats that served with yellow (mixture of turmeric, ginger, garlic, coriander, galangal root, cumin, curry powder ad salt) and spicy sauce. In some restaurant, they are using goat meat, and some others using cow meat.

4. Gulai : 
It is curry soup that usually made with several combinations, such as liver (called Gulai Hati or Liver Curry), cow brain (Gulai Otak / Cow Brain Curry), cow bone marrow (Gulai Sumsum / Cow Bone Marrow Curry), cow internals organs (Gulai Cincang / Cow Internal Organs Curry), and others.

5. Sambal : 
Means Chili. There are two kinds of chili that always served in every Restaurant Padang : Sambal Balado (sliced red chili) and Sambal Lado / Sambal Ijo (sliced green chili). Sambal Balado usually very spicy, and Sambal Ijo usually mild spicy and tastier. To make the chili taste different, some restaurants add anchovy and shallot in the green chili.

HOW TO EAT IN RUMAH MAKAN PADANG? 
You'll be surprise to find out that eating in Rumah Makan Padang is very different comparing with other restaurant. All dishes are displaying in the window of the restaurant. While you are planning to dine-in, there are two ways you can do to ordering the food :
1. Direct choose : 
You just stand near the cuisines, then choose whatever you like. The waiter will get and prepare it to you in seconds.

2. Ala carte : 
Confused and can't decide what you prefer to eat? Just sit at any empty table in the restaurant. In less that a minute, a waiter will immediately serves the dishes directly to your table and fill it with dozens of their dishes such as rendang, curried fish, chili eggplant, curried beef liver, curry nangko, foot tendons, fried chicken, and sambal. While the waiter bring the dishes, you will see one of interesting act : All dishes - that place on each small bowl - were put and fill his both hands, then place all of the bowls on your table without spoil any of each meal. When you eat, choose and take whatever you like. The payment will be counted based on what you eat.

While you are having dine-in at Padang Restaurant, the waiter usually serve a bowl of tap water (sometimes with a slice of lime, to give a fresh scent). It's called "Kobokan", that used to wash your hand before eat. So, don't drink it....!!!

There are two ways to enjoy the dishes : eat with bare hands or with spoon and fork. Native in Indonesia mostly prefer to eat with bare hands.

WHY RUMAH MAKAN PADANG BECOME SO FAMOUS ? 
Most people in Indonesia love to eat in Padang Restaurant because several reason.

First, the choose of cuisines. Padang Restaurant have hundreds of cuisines that can be chosen. Each restaurant also provide different of taste and variant, which make the selection even bigger and wider.

Second is the portion. Padang cuisine have also been known for its large portion of rice. Whenever we ordered for take-away, the waiter will prepare a pack of rice that enough for 2 people. So, for rice-lover, Padang cuisine can guaranteed your stomach blow.

And the last reason is the price. Although some famous Padang's restaurant (such as Sederhana, Salero Bagindo, Pagi Sore, Simpang Raya, Sari Ratu, and Sari Minang) have quiet expensive price for its meals, but in small Padang restaurant, the price is affordable. The cheapest menu (rice with curry egg and chili) will cost not more than Rp 7,000 / pack (approx US$ 0.77). With portion that enough for two people, the price is quiet reasonable.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

INDONESIA'S 10 MOST CONTROVERSY NEWS IN 2010

Within less than 2 weeks, we are going to leave the year of 2010 and welcoming 2011. Many things happened during this year. I can say this year is a "controversy year". There are a lot of controversy things happened during this year, and it is not happened only in USA, but also in almost all around the world. Here are some of the notable and controversy news from Indonesia :

1. ARIEL "PETERPAN" INCIDENT
Ariel (Left) & Luna Maya, his girlfriend
One of the most popular controversy top news in 2010 is Ariel "Peter Pan" Incident. Ariel - or Nazriel Irham - is the former lead singer of Peterpan Band, one of the most famous band from Indonesia. The incident started in June 3, 2010, when a viral sex video of him and his girlfriend, Luna Maya (one of the well-known model from Indonesia), was posted on a web site.

Several days later, another sex video which shown Ariel with another girl - Cut Tari, one of the most popular & talented tv presenter from Indonesia - also appeared on a downloadable web site. Although denied the video was him - and disappeared for almost a week - Ariel finally admitted on June 22, 2010 and handover himself. According to Ariel, the video was made for his private collections, but somehow leak to public. Although it was not Ariel who spread the video (later on it has revealed that it was one of Ariel's friend who plans to blackmail him), but the main trial of the case is him & it is still on progress. Rumors said that there are 36 more sex videos of Ariel that found and leaked to public. But until today. either hard evidences nor other proves was shown or reported to public.

This incident become very popular, not only in Indonesia, but also become hot topics in other countries, such as Korea and America.


2. GAYUS TAMBUNAN, THE TOUGHEST CORUPTOR 
Gayus (left) & his camouflage face (right) when he ran away to Bali
Another highlight of controversies news is Gayus Tambunan. He is known as "the toughest corruptor" due to his act as the tax "case broker" for most of the big tax cases in Indonesia. Before the case blown up, Gayus is only known as a very regular staff of Indonesia's Tax General Directorate. His recent position was The Tax Objected Review Officer. However, within 1 year of his service in the department and with salary less than Rp 12 million / month gross (approx about US$ 1,350), he can manage to buy a Rp 2 billion (approx US$ 222,500) of luxury house, have some collections of branded cars, and bank account with more than Rp 25 billion (approx US$ 2,8 million) amount.

Early this year, Susno Duadji - the former Commissioner General of Police Department - has mentioned his name as one of the suspect in most of the corruption cases in Indonesia. Police aimed target to Gayus and plan to started an investigation to him on March 24,2010. However Gayus disappeared and run away to Singapore.  His existence was detected in Singapore on March 31, 2010. After a very long persuasion by police, Gayus finally agreed to flown back to Indonesia and surrendered himself.

The trial of Gayus still in progress until today. And based on his testimony, there are a lot of big tax cases that have been settled by him. The compensation of his"hard work" usually is some amounts of money. He also admitted had bribed some judges to release him from the trial.

He also proved himself as "the most powerful corruptor" after been spotted in Bali - watching the international tennis competition - during his imprisonment time. When this news published, The Head of Warden was fired directly.


3. THE FAMILY FEUD
This year, the clash in local stars' family in Indonesia has become one of the most frequent headline in any entertainment news. At least 4 famous family feuds that have been exposed and become the most talk-about news.
Arumi Bachsin

The first feud was come from Anissa Bahar, one of dangdut's singer. After her divorce with her husband - Memo Sanjaya - several years ago, their daughter - Juwita Bahar - has been taken care by Memo. On March 2010, Juwita ran away from her father's house after Memo limited her activities and lived with her mother. After stayed with her mother for several month, on August 2010, Juwita ran away again and decided to live alone and take control of her own life. People started to wonder about the relationship between Juwita and her parents. However, until today, no further updated regarding this feud.

Another family feud came from Qory Sandioriva, the former Putri Indonesia 2009 (Miss Indonesia 2009) from Nanggroe Aceh Darrusalam (NAD), and one of the contestant of Miss Universe 2010. Since August 2010, after the Miss Universe competition ended, Qory is starting a clash with her mother - Feriawati - when her mother accused Qory has been blinded with black magic after met a guy nicknamed R. Feriawati also often issues a lot of statements to media about her daughter behavior and how she neglected her family. Qory replied her mother statements by cursing her mother on media, and refused to meet her.
Qory Sandioriva
Although the feud between mother and daughter are getting worse and worse everyday, but it turns out to be a fortune for Qory. It reported that since the clash of them has been blow up by the media, Qory has gaining popularity and get more job after that. A true feud or only sensation?

Another artist is Arumi Bachsin, who also have clash with her parents and run away from home two times. Her first run away was on May 10, 2010. According to her testimony, she did it because she felt being exploited by her parents. With the help from Indonesia Child Protection Commission (Komisi Perlindungan Anak Indonesia), Arumi finally agreed to return to her family. However, on November 18, 2010, Arumi run away again after having a dispute with her family again. Until today, Arumi is staying with Child Protection Commission and refuse to meet her parents.

And the recent feud is Ayu Azhari whose been reported by her two sons - Axel Djody Gondokusumo (20) and Sean Azad Taito Azhari (15) - for neglecting and abusing both of them. The case started on November 4, 2010, when Ayu reported her son - Sean Azad - for stealing her money US$ 50,000. After her son been arrested, Ayu revoked her report. But several days later Axel Gondokusumo filed a report against Ayu for holding his inheritance money. When Ayu denied to admit, Axel and Sean Azad reported her for abusing. They provide a lot of proofs, including the testimony from their younger brothers whose been abused by Ayu repeatedly. The case is still on process, and the news still can be read or watched in any of infotainment news everyday in every media. 


4. THE RAKE OVER THE SPECIAL REGION OF YOGYAKARTA
Since 1945, Yogyakarta has been stated as special part of Indonesia that become sultanate region. The position of Yogyakarta have become a very important part in Indonesia history after the sultan of the region, Sri Sultan Hamengkubuwono IX and Sri Paku Alam VIII, gave their full support to Indonesia Government when Dutch re-occupied Jakarta - the capital city of Indonesia -  during the ensuing struggle to secure independence in January 1946 - August 1950. In return for this support, the declaration of Special Authority over Yogyakarta was granted in full in 1950 and the region became its own province within the province of Central Java. Since become The Special Region, the people of Yogyakarta have authority to choose their own District Leader, in which come from sultan's family.
However this special treatment is become a huge national controversy after Interior Ministry is drafting a regulation concerning the special region of Yogyakarta. The controversy started in November 29, 2010, when The President of Republic of Indonesia  stated that it is not possible to have monarchy system in Yogyakarta, while the system that been used for Indonesia is democracy. This statement is raising controversy and critics, especially from the people of Yogyakarta. Most of them thought that The President did not understand the meaning of "monarchy" and had no consideration of history background. Even the regulations are not done and still debated, the rage against it have become bigger and bigger each day. People is hoping The President of Indonesia can meet The Sultan of Yogyakarta and discussing about the future of The Special Region of Yogyakarta. This meeting can be a solution to stop the misunderstanding. So far, no agenda that mention about the meeting between them will be held.


5. LUWAK COFFEE IS "HARAM"?
*** To understand about Luwak Coffee, pse read my previous articles as shown on this link : http://doyouknow-file.blogspot.com/2010/06/what-is-most-expensive-and-strangest.html ***
Although has been known for years as one of the best and the most expensive coffee from Indonesia, Luwak Coffee suddenly become a controversy this year, especially among the moslem communities in Indonesia. They are questioning about the "halal" (legal) of drinking this coffee because it made from the dung of civet.
This question raised up March 2010, when The President of Indonesia Susilo Bambang Yudoyono went to Australia and gave a souvenir of Luwak Coffee to The Australia Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. But since the coffee did not entering Australia Quarantine (AQIS) for further inspection - and they suspected there has any decease in it - finally the coffee had been hold in airport. Australia Media called this situation as "Dung Diplomacy".

Since then, The Head of MUI (Indonesia Cleric Assembly) KH Ma'ruf Amin, on April 2010 considered to declared Luwak Coffee as "haram" (unlegal) to be drank by moslem people. The consideration that stated on the media, created confusion among the coffee-lover in Indonesia. After long discussions and debates, finally on July 2010, MUI declared that Luwak Coffee is "HALAL", as long as it's been washed before use to drink.


6. VIRGINITY TEST FOR FEMALE STUDENTS 
On September 2010, one of the District House of Representatives (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat Daerah - DPRD) officer from Jambi Province, Bambang Bayu Suseno, came up with an idea to run the Virginity Test for all female students. According to him, the purpose of the test is to increasing the quality of education, especially in district area, and implementing the value of religion. The test is very important to safe the students from free sex among the youth. Female students that fail the test, will not able to continue her education anymore.

This idea is bringing up some polemic and controversy among the officers themselves. According to them Virginity Test is against people rights to have education, and the impact of the test result will be a discrimination for them.

Although the idea was never mentioned anymore, but the controversy of this idea is still continue until today.



7.COWBOY IN PARADISE  
On April 2010, people in Bali Island were shocked when a movie called Cowboy in Paradise was launched in internet. The movie is a documentary that following the daily lifestyle of gigolos in Kutai Beach, Bali Island. The director - Amit Virmani, a Singaporean - shot the film while following two men from Bali, who were introducing themselves as the gigolo from Bali.

Recently, the local government denied about the availability of gigolos in Kutai Beach. To prove that, they are holding regular unannounced inspections in the beach area.


8.  WAMENA GANTENG - THE RINGTONE THAT CAUSED WAR 
The Tribe's War in Wamena
I can say that the most controversy song of the year from Indonesia is "Wamena Ganteng" (The Handsome Wamena), an R&B song composed by FEM aka TM, a 17 years old teenager from Yuka Tribe in Jayapura, Papua. This song is fusing some hell that caused tribe's war between Wamena Tribe and Yoka Tribe. The incident happened on November 17, 2010 at 09.00 am (local time), when Wamena Tribe suddenly attacked Yoka Tribe's village, burned down houses and two cars. Three civilians from Yoka were injured.

The incident happened in the same day earlier, when one of the Yoka's was playing the song from their cellphone in front of Wamena's villager. The song that content lyric that insult Wamena's villager soon raise some hell. Less than an hour, the tribe's war began.

The police was trying to stop the war by shot their guns to the air. The condition finally can be controlled by security forces.


9. THE MOST CONTROVERSY BANK ROBBERY 

One of the most fantastic and controversy bank robbery that happened in Indonesia is happening on August 18,2010, when 18 people robbed CIMB Niaga Bank branch in Medan Tembung, South Sumatera. They were not regular robbers because they were holding AK-47 and FN pistol. While did the acts, all of them were wearing helm and seems like they really know what they should do. One of the bank security and a bank customer - who coincidently were Briptu Samuel, one of the member of The National Car Brigade Team - were killed during the robbery. Everything that happened that day described by the witnesses just like the sequences of Hollywood's action movies that we usually saw in theater.

Even all of the perpetrators of robbery have been found on September 20, 2010 - three were shoot to dead - and imprisoned, but some facts that happened during the bank robbery are still remain unexplained, such as : When they rob the bank in the midday, why the road can be so quiet? Is it coincidence or have been set up? How the robbers can posses guns?

The most strangest thing during the bank robbery is the collections of photos that have been made by one of the witness. The witness identity has been withheld. His photos are shown the sequences of the stage of  the robbery, starting from the robbers come to the bank use several motorbikes, entering the bank, kill the security, and then run. According to the witness, all pictures had been shot use cell-phone camera. But somehow, the pictures shot in a very perfect angles, sharp, and clear. Is the statement of the witness can be trusted?


(The complete sequences of the bank robbery photos can be seen on : http://www.tribunnews.com/2010/08/19/foto-foto-eksklusif-adegan-perampokan-bank-niaga-medan)



10. FFI (Indonesia's Film Festival) CONTROVERSY : 
Indonesia's Film Festival has become one of the most important celebration for Indonesia movie makers. However, since the first festival (1960) until today (2010), most of the festivals are gaining controversies.And the latest film festival also gaining controversy. On November 23, 2010, FFI Committee have elected 10 Indonesia movies. However, some movies - such as Sang Pencerah (The Lightener) and Darah Garuda (Garuda's Blood) - were not part of the 10 movies. Meanwhile, based on most critics opinion, those movies were suitable to be chosen as one of  FFI's nominator.


A surprising controversy happened when the board of juries - that choose "Sang Pencerah" as one of the nominators - dismissed and replaced with new juries. Accoding to the Committee, those juries were fail to find the incorrect history facts that shown on the film (Sang Pencerah is the biography about KH Ahmad Dahlan, one of most well-known national patriot and the founder of Muhammadiyah, an organisation that dedicated themselves to spread the pure Islam teaching in Indonesia). The festival itself has been held on December 6, 2010 at Central Park, Jakarta.

Friday, November 26, 2010

The Strangest Marriage Ritual from All Around The World

Marriage is the most solemn pledge we make in our lifetimes. It is the greatest joy of human existence, the pure joy that flows from two hearts beating as one. Well... that's what people say. But frankly, My Dear, marriage is not as simple as pledging in front of our Priest and family, then riding a "Just Married" car, and taking your honeymoon in some Carribean Islands. In some places, marriage is a very complicated ritual that not easy to make. It takes sacrifice and big-heart to accept the ritual. And some people believe, by doing the ritual, your marriage will be last long, even longer.

There are several strangest marriage rituals from all around the world that I am collecting. I hope, by reading this article, you are not only amaze with other people's culture, but also feel so blessed to have your best soul mate by your side.

MIDDLE EAST : PARTY & PARTY ALL THE TIME
I think one of the most expensive but merrier marriage celebration is in Middle East. In many parts of Middle East, it is very common to have five different parties for the wedding ceremony. The first party will be The Engagement Party. The bride and groom invite family and friends to have a festive party, with lotta foods, dancing, singing, and happy music. It is an all night long party.

Then, the second party takes place in the day when the bride and groom go to the courthouse to sign their marriage contract. After that, family and friends are invited again to celebrate it. They party and dancing with happy music again.

The third party is taking place one day before the wedding. This party is called Hena, in which the bride and groom sit together while several unmarried girls hold a white cloth on their heads. One of the girl (called "The Grinding Girl") grinds together two lumbs of sugar above the couples' heads while asking God to repel all evil spirits from the young couple's life. In the party, the bride is wearing green dress. Hena Party usually ended at the dawn on the day of the wedding.

The fourth will be the main wedding reception party (fiuh... finally....!!!!). In this party, the bride and groom exchange wedding rings. Same as regular wedding party, this party have speeches from each member of the bride and the groom family, dancing, singing, and eating. Usually each guest is given 5 almond pieces, in which a symbol of five sacred wedding wishes (Health, Happiness, Wealth, Fertility, and Longevity).

Finish? Naaah.... there is another one. The final party takes place 7 days after the fourth party. It's called Sabaa, which means Seven. The Sabaa is held at the home of the bride's mother and only women attend. They bring the bride presents and in this opportunity, the bride's mother traditionally gives her daughter gold or diamonds.

So... if you have intention to have a wedding in Middle East's tradition, save your wallet and energy. You're gonna need it. Very much.....!!!

SCOTTISH : BLACKENING THE BRIDE
It is quiet a weirdest pre-wedding tradition I ever heard (hey... whose the one who came out with this idea at first place?). But it's true : Either the bride or the groom (sometimes both, depend on the particular family) is taken by surprise and covered with very smelly things (and substances), such as spoiled milk, eggs, sauces, ..... and other yucky stuffs....!!! After officially "blackened", then they paraded around the town for all to see. 

GERMANY :LOG SAWING
It is a German wedding tradition that test the bride and groom physical skills. After the couple are married, a log is positioned between two sawhorses and they must saw it in half working together. The meaning of this tradition is a sign of how they will handle things together once they are married.

INDIAN : STEALING THE GROOM'S SHOES
Sounds odd, but fun. During the ceremony, the groom has to remove his shoes prior to entering the alter to be married. Members of the bride's family are obligated to try to steal the groom shoes, meanwhile the groom's family must protect the shoes, and they will go to extreme measures in order to hide the shoes. If the bride's family is successful in stealing the groom's shoes, then the groom must pay whatever amount of money they request to get the shoes back. Hmm.... remind me with my childhood hide-and-chase's game. ^_^

AFRICAN :A NIGHTMARE ON THE 1ST NIGHT
Villagers people in Africa are expecting that every girls are still virgin before they are getting married. So in order to make sure that thing, in some certain villages, right after the wedding ceremony, an older woman will accompany the couple to their bedroom. Her presence is to direct the couple and explain what they should do. If  the new bride seems a little too experienced on her wedding night, the older woman can complain to the village and the marriage can be dismissed. Usually the older women are village elders, but sometimes also the bride's mother or even her mother-in-law.

ITALY : TALISMAN & SHATTERED VASE
In Italy, the groom is carrying a talisman (piece of iron) in his pocket during the wedding day. The talisman was believed to ward off misfortune. When wedding party is coming to an end, the newly married couple shatter a vase or glass into many pieces. The number of pieces represented the expected number of years they would be happily married. So if you want to "happily ever after", smash the vase into dust-pieces.

MEXICO : A GIFT OF 13 COINS
During the wedding day in Mexico, the groom bestows his bride a gift of 13 coins - called arras - which is representing Jesus and His 12 Apostles. The coins are to be blessed by the priest and bear the groom's promise to care for and provide for his wife.

CHINA : CRYING IN A WEDDING 
It's actually a very ancient ritual. I even hardly believe it's still exist now. But I read in some website, they mentioned this ritual still be done. Usually it is the bride and her female family members who did this ritual. The ritual is like this : One month before the wedding, a bride is starting her weep tradition and cries for an hour. Ten days later, her mother joins and cries together with the bride. Another ten days later, her grandmothers, sisters, and aunts contribute to the flood. They are not just crying, but there is some tones they must follow. This crying ritual is called "Crying Marriage Song", in which a celebration of happy times.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

10 WACKIEST BANDS IN THE WORLD

Some bands - especially rock bands - are popular because of their music (you know Led Zeppelin with their memorable Stairway to Heaven, or Mettalica with their Enter the Sandman). But you also know that some others are popular just because of their acts on stage (well.... Greenday or Marylin Manson can be in the list....).

Apart from those two kinds of bands, there are some others that not only popular because of their music, but also their performance and what they wore on the stage. A little wacky, unusual, and totally did not support their music. But that's what make them stars. Well... let's see how wacky they really are:

1. KUBURAN BAND :
Kuburan Band
Literally, their band means "The Graveyard Band". They usually dressed up very scary : White face with a very scary make up and dress like vampires or zombies. You might thought they are heavy metal rock band (Well... Slipknot and Kiss also dress like that....). Wait till you hear their song.... you might be surprised that their song is much more a pop song than metal. Yep.... Kuburan Band is a very popular band from Indonesia. Founded in Bandung on September 11, 2001, they have been well-known in indie music community and oftenly contributed their performance in a lot of indie-music concert. Even they proclaimed themselves as THE 2ND MOST GOTHIC BAND IN THE WORLD, but in fact,their music is pop-rock with funny lyric. Their first commercial album was released in 2006 and it's called BOOMING ! BEE ARE THE KILL YOUNG PEN THINK GUN THANK (it's not actual English words, but Indonesia slank, which means "Even We Are Not Taking A Bath Yet, But We Still Handsome"), in which become a big hit. Their single "Lupa Lupa Ingat" (I Don't Remember) is a very phenomenal song a very popular during that time. This group is still exist and actively performing their acts.


2. PSYCHO LE CEMU :
Psycho Le Cemu
I don't think they are rock band, are you? Althought their wore anime outfits - and might be dress like a video game characters - But they really are. Known as Japanese visual rock band, Psycho (which formed in 1999) is one of the famous rock band. They always made different sets of costums for each of their performance. Their first album - Doppelganger - was released in September 2001 and become a hit. Their popularity is keep growing until May 2005, when Daishi - the lead singer of Psycho - was arrested due to the positivity of using methamphetamine while did urinalysis in Kanagawa. The band went into hiatus and all of the members are taking their own side projects, until 2009, when all members of the band reunite for the band's 10th Anniversary tour called 10th Anniversary - Legend of Sword.


3. PYRAMID BAND :
Piramid Band
Althought their outfit is Latino dress, but don't be surprise when you hear their song. The song and the outfits did not match at all. Pyramid Band (not to be confused with USA's band called Pyramid) is Indonesia pop-rock band. Founded in Palembang, South Sumatera, in 2008, Pyramid Band is a boy-band that usually played pop in Malay's tone, and become very famous in South Sumatera recently. One of their well-known performance is wearing Latino dress while performing on the stage.



4. THE CHANGCUTERS :

The Changcutters
Another bands from Indonesia that also have a weird performance is The Changcuters (literally means "men's underwear" in Sundanese - local dialect of West Java). Since their first performance in 2005 until today, they always dress-up like 60's rock and roll British Band. Same as what they wore, this band also performed Brit's garage rock and roll music, in which not a popular music genre in Indonesia that time. But later on, their music can be accepted by audiences in Indonesia. Until today, they already released 3 albums and still active do performances.


5.TRIO MACAN : 
Trio Macan
Trio Macan (Trio Tigress) actually is a trio-girl-singers from East Java, Indonesia who usually performing dangdut songs (one of Indonesia's music genre). They were formed since 2006 and become one of the most controversy dangdut group singers. Since their first appearance, people has critisizing their lack of singing capability. But somehow, they are gaining a lot of appreciation and awards, such as Best Dangdut Group in MTV Indonesia Awards  2006. Their trade mark is always wearing tiger stripe body-shape clothes, doing erotic & energic dances in every of their performance. Because of their hot jump, fast and raugh dances, sometimes one of their top cloth was accidently took off. Upps....


6. BOSS HOG:
Boss Hog
Nothing strange with this band actually. They are regular American punk blues rock band that offering a very loud and abrasive sound of their music (well... which rock band that did not play loud sound?). The only different thing is : their lead singer - Cristina Martinez - usually performed in confrontational full nudity. Yep, the band that formed in 1989, usually performed with such a controversy performance in their earlier show. They never did it anymore in the present, but... well.... who knows? ^_^



7. BLUE MAN GROUP :
Blue Man Project
Actually they are not spesifically music band, but a creative organization whose producing theatrical shows and concert, featuring music, comedy, and multimedia. They did some record of music and scores for film and television, such as Terminator 3 : The Rise of the Machines, Scrubs, The Tonight Show, Arrested Development, and Las Vegas. They never have same members in their band. However, they always performed in trio that appear to have blue skin, no voice, no hairs and ears. Most of their music is rock-oriented and experimental music. Mostly in their show, they perform percussion and any other "wacky" instruments (airpoles, drumbone, PVC Pipes and tubes).


8. GAY FOR JOHNNY DEPP :
Gay for Johnny Depp
Well.... seems like there are no any other band who obsessed to their idol as much as this band. This New Yorkers hardcore band is known for the lyrical content of their songs, which is often concerned with the band's homoerotic obssesion over the actor Johnny Depp. Well.... even their music is fine, but if I was Johnny Depp, then I prefer not to stay close to them.








9. THE B-52S :
The B-52S
Look at them : They wore very cheerful print shirt. They look pretty nice, clean, and smooth. You thought you are going to watch a performance of the reggae band (they look very much a like UB-40, the British reggae band). Don't get shock when they start to sing their song such as Private Idaho or Good Stuff. It's punk-pop-rock...!! It's true.... The B-52s is a pop-rock bands that established since 1976 in Athens, Georgia. Since their early year, they already performed rock and roll, then become much popular after worked in other genres such as post-punk, and dance new wave. One of their most-known song is the Theme Song of The Flintstones : Movie (1994).


10. SUPERNOVA :
Supernova
Ever imagine how spacemen performed their music in earth? Well... watch Supernova, a Costa Mesa - California pop punk band. Performed since 1989, Supernova has been known as a band that always dressing in silver jumpsuits and custom-made space helmets. Their song, Chewbacca, was featured in the smash hit indie movie Clerks.

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