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SeaShorts 2018: My Student Film

“Before I became who I am right now, I was a student.”

Programmer: Jacky Yeap

In all of his films, there is always a shot showing the words “I Love You Lau Shu Lin”. Jacky said that he will always film this shot until the girl sees it. Eventually, this became his motivation to make more films, his student film as well.


Dain Said / Malaysia / 1990 / 22mins

Surabaya Johnny is a film essay exploring in documentary and fiction, the Indonesian military’s brutal massacres of communists in 1965.

Film School: Westminster University
I recall…: “I had a tutor who hated me and I think he was responsible for this event; I went out for coffee, and when I came back at the premiere my friends told me that a group of dark suited Indonesian men in a black Mercedes came out and started shouting and haranguing the screen where the trailer of Surabaya Johnny was playing. A few years ago when the Act Of Killing was made, his name was in the credits as one of the producers.”

WAGON 1, 2, 3 | GERBONG 1, 2, 3

Garin Nugroho / Indonesia / 1985 / 13mins

The encounter of two men and a woman at the station brings the memory of good things about many encounters, tragedy and also poverty around the railway station.

Film School: Jakarta Institute of Arts
I recall…: “At that time students did not have enough money to buy 8mm raw materials, so we bought the cheap material illegally from someone who worked at National TV station. Shooting on a train was also without permission, we did it stealthily.”


Sherad Anthony Sanchez / Philippines / 2005 / 11mins

A young girl is being taught to be a death chanter for funerals at day, and sold by pimps at night.

Film School: Ateneo De Manila University
I recall…: “It’s a film when I was a sophomore in the university and was done as a class exercise. It was almost shown in Rotterdam (if my memory does not deny it) with the end credits saying “Sorry Quark (the name of my teacher), for submitting late!”


Edwin / Indonesia / 2006 / 9mins

A conversation that starts with music and emails, and ends up possibly changing the relationship between the two people from “mother-son” to “woman-man”

Film School: The Jakarta Institute of Arts
I recall…: “A Very Boring Conversation, I wanted this film to be a one-shot film, following the characters moving in the house for 7 or 8 minutes. Of course it didn’t work. No planning, no rehearsal, not enough time. But it was a pretty funny experience. We had fun. 
We did it with 3 takes. Because we only have 3 rolls of film stocks.”


Anthony Chen / Singapore / 2005 / 18mins

G-23 is a story about emotional suppression in urban Singapore. The story revolves around 3 idiosyncratic city dwellers, a young Indian girl, an elderly man and a middle-aged lady. The lives of these characters intertwine through a ticket-tearer who works at the local Indian cinema.

Film School: Ngee Ann Polytechnic, School of Film and Media Studies
I recall…: “I started film school really early, 17 in fact. I shot G-23 when I was 19 as part of my graduation film at Ngee Ann Polytechnic’s School of Film and Media Studies. We shot it on 16mm. I really do miss shooting on film. At that time, there wasn’t even video assist available at the school. So there was no video monitor to look at what one was shooting and no way of playing back takes. It was pure trust and instinct of what you are capturing right before your eyes. I almost feel some of that discipline gets thrown out the window with the digitalisation of the medium. Now we get so used to watching “playback” so much.”


Liew Seng Tat / Malaysia / 2002 / 7mins

A grandfather brings his grandson out for breakfast and then shit happens.

Film School: Multimedia University (Seng Tat didn’t go to film school. He studied animation)
I recall…: 
Seng Tat: “This animation was the final year project of my animation course in MMU. It was a group project done together with my three other classmates; Jun Wei, Terence and Eddie. I’ve not seen them for a long long time. Hope they are still alive and well.” 
Chui Mui: “This animation did not finish rendering. And it is edited from playblast video. That’s because the rendering crashes whenever Seng Tat goes near the computer. Seng Tat was a curse. We don’t let him near the rendering machine” 
Seng Tat: “That’s not true. The entire animation was rendered. Only 1 shot was a playblast shot” 
Chui Mui: “I see. Maybe I remembered wrongly”.