Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Nur Kasih a great drama but there's few hickups on the Movie.. =P


I am going to talk about Nur Kasih.

*bangs my head on the floor*

I know, I know...

But it's worth the time. As you all know, there is not one bigger drama in Malaysia than Nur Kasih - not even Manjalara, Adamaya etc etc. Since its premiere in 2009, Nur Kasih has taken the whole nation by storm. People love it, people like it, people feel nothing of it or people hate it - either way, people can't stop talking about it.

So they made a film. A film based on the drama which is, of course, entitled Nur Kasih The Movie.

I can't still grasp the relevance of inserting the word 'The Movie' into every Malaysian films that originated from TV dramas. Remember Dunia Baru The Movie, guys? If the title is pretty enough by itself, then leave it at that. Why have to contaminate the beautiful very Malaysian-like poster of a very Malaysian-like film by inserting the very Western-influenced 'THE MOVIE' caption into it? No purpose at all, I shall say but only to inform the audiences that the film they're about to watch in the cinema won't be 24 episode long. That's why they put in 'THE MOVIE' part. So that you guys won't get confused.

Putting things short, I am ever the fan of the story - drama or film. I watched it for the sake of Kabir Bahtia's insightful and insanely effective directing. Aside from the late Yasmin Ahmad, she is my favourite director. It's irony, though, because she's not even Malaysian in the first place and speaks hardly any Malay at all... I have loved all of his previous works immensely, from Cinta, Sepi to Setem. Cinta made me cry, Sepi melted my heart and Setem made me laughed so hard.

Then came Nur Kasih. My feelings were a bit mixed up. Metaphorically speaking, it's like knowing a really pretty and gorgeous girl with a boring attitude. You love looking at her but you're not interested in befriending her.

So, to sum it up...


1 - Great directing - Kabir Bhatia. Enough said.

2 - Beautiful utilization of cinematography - the camera work is really nice. Every scene seems quite picturesque, giving off this aura of sereneness. A feast to the eyes.

3 – Background music and OSTs – I love love love how the background music fits each scenes perfectly. Effective in channeling the characters’ frustration, happiness and gratefulness to the audiences. Almost gave me goosebumps.


[man, this is going to take a while…]

1 – Over-dramatic storyline
Adam, the hero, had more than two near-death experiences in both drama and film. He had a really bad car accident under the influence of alcohol, was trapped in a hotel for a few days during a terrorist attack in Mumbai, got kidnapped in a cave for six months, was involved in a train accident which killed tens of people and another car accident in the midst of a terrible sandstorm, got lost and was saved by a kindhearted Jordanian boy and later, was afflicted with a heart disease – only to survive in the end, of course. Come to think of it, I can’t help but to pity him. I mean, this guy had been through a lot. So LOT that it became almost unrealistic – like the scriptwriter intended to put in more life-threatening conflicts to the main hero to keep the suspense going. Give the hero a break already! Or at least a normal life where people stop dying around him. How many dudes in real life have that much of a drama, man? More than enough to write a potential best-selling autobiography. Oh wait, he did!

2 – Cheesy lines
Oh God, don’t get me started on this. The characters have nothing but nice and religious things to say. Some of the lines are actually very inspiring and awakening but still, people don't use that kind of sentence in real life. And the main characters never get mad… as in REALLY mad. All they do are love and cry and pray and love and cry and pray again. I want to see the main characters snap or punch somebody or break something... for God's sake, at least make them human...

3 – Too one-dimensional
All the main female characters wear headscarves, act ladylike, love children, obedient to their husband, loyal, patient and educated but well-mannered. As for the guys - they are well-versed in religious knowledge, excellent leaders, gentle to their wives etc etc. No variation, no differences, no conflicts among them. The story represents only one perspective on life which I find hard to relate to the more modern section of society who are more accepting to differences. The story is hardly representative on real life.

4 - Too Idealistic
I have this belief that things like Nur Kasih never happens in real life. Of course some of it does but not all, especially the over-exxagerated ones. Especially the drastic pace of transformation for Adam and his late second wife, Katrina - they were hard clubbers, drinkers and had little faith in religion. Then came a certain event and BANG! He turned into a Mr Ustaz and she began wearing hiqab covering everything save for her eyes. I know that people change and improve on self time by time but not as sudden as this. And the whole theme of the story of how you would always end up doing the right thing... it's getting too formulaic and boooooring...

5 - Imbalance in Characterization
Adam's brother, Aidil, lost his wife in a car accident. Adam, in the effort of trying to console him, told him that he could never imagined being in his shoes and losing his wife. But wait - had he not experienced such tragedy before? Nur Amina is not Adam's first love. Again, I repeat, NOT! She may be his true love but he had been in love with another girl before marrying her. Remember the ever so beautiful Katrina played by Sharifah Sofia? And remember how she had been so cruelly discarded from the storyline after Adam switched his affection to Nur? Man, I was furious. I mean, what the hell? So to keep things simple by avoiding Adam having to choose between his two wives, you kill off Katrina from the script altogether? And worse, she was not even mentioned once in the movie. Adam might have been a great husband to Nur but he acted grossly unfair to Katrina, as if he had never married her at all.

Or maybe the scriptwriter thought the audience had forgotten Katrina, so why waste time dwelling on her.


I tend to be more appreciative of the film when the characters speak no lines. Just let the camera and background music do all the work. Once they do, I cringe. And cringe some more...