The Ballads of Cinema Lovers
Balada Bala Sinema
A passionate documentary that shows the power of community-built cinema appreciation and the tireless behind-the-scenes efforts.
Former journalist Bowo Leksono started the Cinema Lovers Community to facilitate film activities for youths in the small, uneventful town of Purbalingga, Central Java. To keep up with the demands of young filmmakers, Leksono launched screenings in the town hall, only to face restrictions from authorities. In retaliation, he took the screenings to the villages via a film festival. Years later, the Purbalingga Film Festival continues to inspire and highlight talents from new generations of filmmakers.
Chronicling the humble beginnings and progression of the festival through interviews with Leksono, volunteers and guests, the film is currently the only visible record of the informal film ecosystem in Indonesia. This telling feature is the definition of Indonesian cinema, proving that the majority of its builders came from grassroots movements.
Cast & Credits
Yuda Kurniawan is a director, producer, cinematographer and scriptwriter from Banyuwangi, East Java. The Ballads of Cinema Lovers is his second feature documentary, after Memory & Hope (2015), about the survivors of sexual violence from Maumere, Flores. He is currently working on a project about Fajar Merah, the son of historical poet activist Widji Thukul.
Yuda Kurniawan, Damar Ardi
Bowo Leksono, Nanki Nirmanto, Asep Triyatno