‘Pendatang’ film racks up views, wows audiences

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia’s first entirely crowdfunded movie, Pendatang, which premiered on YouTube at 9pm Thursday, has garnered over 100,000 views as of 4pm yesterday, while drawing rave reviews from viewers.

The Cantonese-language movie by Kuman Pictures, which specialises in low-budget horror and thrillers, is set in a dystopian Malaysia in which the different races are forbidden to mix.

It features an ethnic Chinese family that finds a scared Malay girl hiding in their new house after they had been relocated to a Chinese-only settlement.

Most of the comments on the movie via YouTube were about the racism highlighted by the movie and how Malaysian society should understand the issue.

@quantumx07 gave the movie an overall good rating. “A decent movie with good overall acting by the entire cast. Some of the casual racism in Malaysia is subtly shown; those who know, understand.

“I just wish that instead of furniture, the factory produced something more essential to life.

“It’s hard to suspend belief that people are willing to kill each other for furniture.

“There is room to expand the story further, perhaps by showing the perspective of Malays and ethnic Indians living in segregation in the same timeline and how they helped the girl to survive.”

@Syafiq_hazmy said the movie was “the best” and that it showcased extreme racism.

“When we behave with extreme racism, there will be those who take advantage to discriminate... we are Malaysia... kita jaga kita (we care for each other)... those who are the bottom are fighting, those at the top take advantage,” he wrote.

@raninadesan3225 posted: “A well-made movie. Subtle message for all Malaysians. Kudos to all involved in the making of this movie.

“Thanks for making it possible for us to view this from our homes. Please send this movie to the international film festivals.”

@rickquek2751 congratulated the makers of the movie for highlighting the issue of racism.

“I believe what this movie is trying to bring up. This situation happens anywhere on Earth as long as corrupted politicians continue to blatantly lie through their noses and people choose to believe them blindly until they face the ugly truth.

“We, the people, should wake up to their lies.”

Pendatang director Ng Ken Kin said the movie premiered on YouTube as it would not have passed for a national cinematic release by the Film Censorship Board of Malaysia (LPF).

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