Last week I was invited to attend a special preview screening for the movie CINTA. Sounds good, I’d watched the ads for it on TV, plus it stars one of my favourite local actresses – Sharifah Amani. PLUS it’s free.
But deep within the cheapskate in me, I do enjoy and support the local art/entertainment community. Well, depends also lah. If you ask me to watch Cicakman, terima kasih sajalah. If you ask me to watch Afdlin Shauki‘s Sumolah, I might go for it, the only reservations being the soundscape quality which is seriouslyx100 lacking in all of Afdlin’s movies. If you’ve watched any of his movies before, you will know what I mean lah.
I don’t mind watching ‘Puteri Gunung Ledang’ in the cinema again (even though you can’t drink anything for fear of bursting your bladder ‘cos the movie is so damn long). When ‘Pontianak Harum Sundal Malam’ came out, I was tempted to go watch it but for some reason I could not make it. I’m glad I didn’t — that movie defined suckiness (watched it on Astro Ria during Raya). With local productions — movies and plays, it’s a hit or miss thing. I just wish for more of the former than the latter.
Enough with digressing. The point I was going to make was that I enjoy watching and observing the development of our local entertainment industry (which seems to comprise of mostly productions in Malay if they are movies; I wonder if this could be a reason?) and so far they are improving by the minute. Then again I tend to avoid Scenario-type slapstick and I seriously hope my fellow citizens come to their good senses as well.
CINTA:10 stars, 5 love stories, one movie. Maklumlah dapat support daripada Media Prima pasal all the actors/actresses are quite hot and in demand, heheh. See, looks matter.
In a nutshell, it’s a story about love. Can I end this review here? Heheh *runs*.
*Comes back* CINTA ambitiously undertakes to illustrate the various forms of love within 5 stories. At this point you can’t help but to compare it with Love Actually where all the individuals are somehow connected to each other. Well it’s rather like this in CINTA as well, but as it’s not a unique form of story-telling, it doesn’t really matter (as in, Richard Curtis did not invent that).
All 5 stories take place in Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia where shots taking in the Twin Towers and KL Tower (but more of the Twin Towers) are maximised for a location identification purpose. Sometimes it felt a bit like those feel-good Nescafe advertisements. I posed the question of whether the director (Kabir Bhatia, who was not present the day we attended the preview screening) had previous experience shooting advertisements (I was not familiar with his works prior to this). One of the guys there (I forgot who, sorry) answered that it’s only that we are so used to these kind of shots being commercialised in Malaysia, where in fact movie makers all over the world have been and still are using these cinematography options. Hence it’s a matter of mind shift. Fair enough.
The following is a brief run-down for all the five stories; the synopsis are copied from the movie’s website, so I disclaim all continuity and sentence flow irregularities 😀
Age does not diminish one’s capacity for love or need for companionship. The marching of time has not been kind to Elyas (Dato’ Rahim Razali), a retired schoolteacher. But despite illness and age, Rubiah (Fatimah Abu Bakar), a compassionate and kind woman sees Elyas’ dignity and spirit shining through. Can you recognise the face of it, even if you have no memory of it? Does love have to end in your advancing years?
I don’t know about you, but I don’t think that there is an expiry date for love. One can continue loving another long after s/he passes on to the Pearly Gates, so I don’t see any problem when it comes to this (Too Young To Die, anyone?). I feel that the last line in the synopsis, the question was a bit blah. It hints of Elyas and Rubiah’s relationship being opposed to, and that was not the case in the movie. Well I don’t know why I’m so anal about the copywriting, but I guess I take more notice because this story is actually my favourite among the 5.
I liked Dato’ Rahim Razali’s performance, though Sharizal said he’d seen him do better. Fatimah Abu Bakar (who incidentally is Sharifah Amani’s mother) was rather sweet and superb. There were some tear-jerking moments as the script gives us a glimpse of what it is like to have old age and illness creep upon you. I always get sad when I see older people suffering, thinking of their contributions to society when they were younger and how it all will go away soon (I’m pessimistic like that) and knowing though hardly believing one day it would be my turn (as with all younger people).
There were elements of filial piety and ‘kacang tak lupa kulit’, something you may see on ‘Cerekarama’ (which has quite a few rather good tele-movies).
Love really does happen when you least expect it. An unexpected meeting leads to an unexpected depth of feeling for Azlan (Eizlan Yusuff), a wealthy, eligible bachelor who runs a publishing empire. He meets Azura (Fasha Sandha), a strong and independant if opinionated book store assistant and romantically pursues Azura. But when she falls for him, is this girl from a simple background finally good enough for him?
I think Eizlan Yusuff was kinda good-looking 😛 Fasha Sandha was kinda hot too. The similarity between the two was that their acting could get a tad stiff at times. Not so natural. And maybe it was a script-thing, but a couple of the scenes were too clichÃ© and overkill. I know, I watch too many movies 😀
The story itself is sweet, rather Cinderella-like. I think a lot of men should take note of the moral of this story. What is it? Don’t want to spoil the storyline lah.
Dyan (Nanu Baharudin) is a rich, successful architect but unlucky in love. Trapped in a love triangle, Dyan is protective of her younger brother Dhani (Que Haidar), a struggling artist who seems to lack ambition. Frustrated that her brother is wasting his talents, Dyan urges him to change his life. What sacrifices are you willing to make for the one you love?
My second favourite story! Well it could be a rather close-tie with ‘Unggul’ except that there were some questions regarding the medical condition of the brother. Again I don’t want to spoil it for those who will watch it, but I think maybe a lack of other medical options were not offered prior to the one big risky option.
But I can relate rather well with this story, seeing that I am the youngest in a family of 3 sisters and at times they could be rather protective of me. Which is a good thing, because if someone doesn’t care about you, s/he would not bother with you at all. Just that sometimes it could be rather frustrating because other people seem to know best, or portray that sentiment. I’m guessing everyone with an elder sibling can relate to this 🙂 And everyone with a younger sibling will know and understand the feeling of wanting the best for the younger ones so they don’t get misguided or hurt.
A rather emotional story for me, especially during one of the final scenes. The cinematography was beautiful, heart-wretching and evoked all sorts of feelings within me. I shed more than a few tears, shhh.
Nanu Bahaudin rocked.
Ignorance is bliss. Harris (Rashidi Ishak) who has built a thriving architect’s firm with Dyan, seems to have it all — a beautiful wife Airin (Rita Rudaini), a beautiful daughter, a beautiful life. Until he wakes up one day to find out that his perfect life is but an illusion. Does he fight for her to stay, or does true love mean letting go of the one you love the most?
I didn’t like the opening scene of this story. Too… overdone, too stiff, anyone with half a head could see what was wrong, even just by looking at the person’s facial expressions. So maybe Harris was in denial all this while? When someone distance themselves emotionally from you, you can feel it no matter what. Unless of course you are as dense as a coconut tree. So that was a bit confusing for me.
Kinda sad also lah, to lose everything overnight. The daughter’s performance was numero uno! Can top many actors/actresses in our tanahair. There was a sequence in the middle of the movie where scenes of Rita and Dyan overlapped each other, I got kinda confused and had to ask the FA to explain a bit. They both looked a bit same to me lah, females with long hair. The others didn’t think that they looked alike. Well, I *was* tired…
Just found out the other day that Rashidi Ishak is husband to Vanidah Imran. So lucky! And was reading some pointless tabloid the other day that said Rita Rudaini had some connection/friendship with Mawisux. So unlucky!
Arianna (Sharifah Amani) is a young girl who is literally looking for love in the wrong places in the city with the help of a kind stranger, Taufiq (Pierre Andre), a young journalist with a struggling tabloid. By depending on the kindness of strangers, does Arianna find the love that she desperately seeks or does she finally sees the one that truly loves her?
I heart Sharifah Amani. But I realised that there was something a bit not right with her role, or the portrayal of her role in this story. Sekejap muram, sekejap hyper cute and happy, sekejap this and that, consistency a bit off… quite scary to know someone like that in real life leh.
No wait, I AM like that in real life… 😀
Manakala Pierre Andre sort of reprises his role from Gol & Gincu, that is the nice quiet boy loving the girl from afar. In the movies they always get the girl in the end. But this doesn’t happen in real life lah. Still, no harm hoping, kan? 😀
I didn’t like PA’s acting so much, I thought he was a bit kayu. But according to Sharizal and TV Smith, he did a good job with his role. PA was the only artist who went for the screening that we attended, and he mentioned that the director controlled the direction (duh, hehe) of the movie with an iron fist. This included but not limited to the performances of the actors. So I guess the director had a vision he wanted to convey lah, instead of letting the actors do their own thang a bit.
There was a scene in this story where they had to wait for 3 trains to pass by at the same time. Interesting trivia.
Overall, CINTA is a feel-good movie that relies on our capability to love to make it work. It did for me, I rather enjoyed it, and I hope you will too when you catch it at the cinemas starting 30th November 2006.
In the meantime, enjoy these two music videos from the soundtrack of CINTA below. Clips from the movie are included, so you can sort of get a feel of the movie, prior to watching it in the cinema of course 😉
Sewaktu Dahulu by Andy of Flop Poppy.
Perpisahan by Anuar Zain.