The Little Cinema of Malaysia

  • Hassan Abd Muthalib


THE LITTLE CINEMA OF MALAYSIA: OUT WITH THE OLD, IN WITH THE NEW MALAYSIAN mainstream cinema is notable (!) for its emphasis on pure entertainment and nothing but. The films were also notable (until recently), for not reflecting the ethnic and cultural diversity of Malaysia in spite of the official promotion of the country internationally as Malaysia, Truly Asia. Dishing out cliched, stereotypical and antiquated narratives and characters, many of these films somehow attain box-office success, proof that they are popular with a certain segment of the cinema-going public. None of these films, however, have been invited to participate in international film festivals. The few alternative films that have surfaced from time to time (and have had international exposure), have never had a mass audience, and them have ever made back their initial investment. This gloomy scenario, however, has not fazed the group dubbed The Little Cinema of Malaysia....