Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

The 10 Underrated Indonesian Movies to Watch on Netflix

Netflix is home to great movies from many countries, including Indonesia. But sometimes, looking for a good movie on Netflix is ​​like looking for a needle in a haystack. For those bored and wanting to find mainstream movies, here are some underrated Indonesian movies to watch on Netflix.

1. Lovely Man (2011)

  • Director: Teddy Soeriaatmadja
  • Cast: Donny Damara, Raihaanun, Yayu Unru, Ari Syarif
  • Runtime: 76 minutes

This film was written and directed by Teddy Soeraatmadja and was the first of his Trilogy of Intimacy films. It raises a taboo issue for some Indonesians, telling the story of a child who is looking for his father but finds out that the father is a trans woman who works as a prostitute.

Lovely Man generated controversy due to rejections from one of the social organizations in Indonesia. Still, it gained positive reviews from international critics that praised Damara's work as Saipul/Ipuy, winning Best Actors in the Asian Film Awards, Indonesian Movie Awards, Indonesian Film Festival, and Maya Awards.

2. Sacred (2011)

  • Director: Monty Tiwa
  • Cast: Poppy Sovia, Migi Parahita, Sadha Triyudha,
  • Runtime: 82 minutes

Inspired by The Blair Witch Project (1999), Monty Tiwa directed a found footage horror film, presenting a new style in the horror film genre in Indonesia in the 2000s while also playing one of the actors. The film, also known as Keramat in Indonesian, was said to be one of the scariest Indonesian films of its time.

As one of the underrated Indonesian movies to watch on Netflix, it focuses on a group of film crew who enter a forbidden area and face a series of supernatural events as they realize their lives are in danger. Talking to Catchplay, Tiwa revealed that this film was produced without a scenario and was made based on a general outline.

3. Lights from the East, I am Maluku (2014)

  • Director: Angga Dwimas Sasongko
  • Cast: Chicco Jerikho, Shafira Umm, Abdurrahman Arif, Burhanuddin Ohorella
  • Runtime: 150 minutes

It is not your average children-playing-football-to-achieve-their-dreams sports film; this film combines the true story of the Maluku football team's struggle for the U-15 national championship in Indonesia with riots between Muslims and Christians in Maluku in the early 2000s.

The story is based on the true story of Sani Tawainela, a former Indonesian U-16 national player who put together children who were victims of conflicts in a football team that later developed into a Football School (SSB). Resulting in a heartwarming, humble, and uplifting coming-of-age story about the most popular sport in Indonesia.

4. Ave Maryam (2018)

  • Director: Ertanto Robby Soediskam
  • Cast: Maudy Koesnaedi, Chicco Jerikho, Tutie Kirana, Olga Lydia
  • Runtime: 74 minutes

Originally titled Salt Leaving the Sea, Ertanto Robby's Ave Maryam is a festival film that was first released at the Jogja-NETPAC Asian Film Festival. This film contains adult elements, and several scenes were cut so that it could be screened for the 17+ age range and in Indonesian cinemas.

This film raises sensitive religious issues in Indonesia and voices the rarely told life of Catholics. Ave Maryam tells the story of Sister Maryam, who is in a relationship with a young priest named Yosef, played by Chicco Jericho.

5. About a Woman (2020)

  • Director: Teddy Soeriaatmadja
  • Cast: Tutie Kirana, Rendy Ahmad
  • Runtime: 76 minutes

Tutie Kirana plays a 65-year-old widow who is in a romantic relationship with a young man who is assigned by her son to take care of her. This film is part of Teddy Soeriaatmadja's Trilogy of Intimacy and was praised for telling a love story from the perspective of a middle-aged woman.

This film debuted at the Singapore International Film Festival 2014 and the Tokyo International Film Festival the following year. This film directly released on Netflix in 2020 without being shown in Indonesian cinemas, considering that this film raises a sensitive issue and suggestive plot.

6. Aum! (2021)

  • Director: Bambang Kuntara Mukti
  • Cast: Jefri Nichol, Chicco Jerikho, Aksara Dena, Agnes Natasya Tije
  • Runtime: 85 minutes

Jefri Nichol and Chicco Jerikho, two prolific Indonesian actors, join hands to star in Aum!, the latest effort to replicate students' struggles before Reformation 1998. Produced by Bioskop Online, one of the streaming services in Indonesia, Aum! was first released as the opening of the service.

Set in 1997, a year before Reformation, this B-movie film focuses on drama blended with action and tells a story about a group of students putting together a plan to dissolve the government. This group is being hunted by the army, one of whom turns out to be the older brother of the character Satriya, played by Nichol.

7. Cadet 1947 (2021)

  • Directors: Rahabi Mandra, Aldo Swastia
  • Cast: Bisma Karisma, Kevin Julio, Omara Esteghlal, Marthino Lio
  • Runtime: 111 minutes

It has similarities in storyline and stylistic direction to the 1917 film by Sam Mendes. The film was inspired by the Indonesian Air Forces' first air attack mission by the cadets at Dutch defense headquarters on July 29, 1947, two years after Indonesian Independence.

The themes and main plot explore the treachery and conflict between the cadets. They build up the tension and show how the Indonesian air force troops struggle against Dutch Military Aggression I. The narrative and humor are good, but the world-building and nuance are great.

8. Vengeance is Mine, All Others Pay Cash (2021)

  • Director: Edwin
  • Cast: Marthino Lio, Ladya Cheryl, Sal Priadi, Reza Rahadian
  • Runtime: 114 minutes

Adapted from the best-selling book of the same name by Eka Kurniawan, the film first premiered in August 2021 at the 74th Locarno Film Festival and won the top prize, the Golden Leopard, for best film. It won five of 12 nominations at the 42nd Indonesian Film Festival, including Best Director, Best Actress, and Best Actor.

The film stays true to the novel, set in the 1980s, with a colorful palette and eccentric hairdo and costumes. The story explores toxic masculinity, telling the story of a fighter who hides his impotence, loses black and blue but falls in love with a female fighter.

9. Cross the Line (2022)

  • Director: Robby Ertanto
  • Cast: Shenina Cinnamon, Chicco Kurniawan
  • Runtime: 70 minutes

After Photocopier (which can also be watched on Netflix), Shenina and Chicco are paired again in a romantic drama film about a worker who earns a living as a ship's crew member. Both depict the problems and despair that must be faced, from both a woman's and a man's perspective.

Similar to the festival movies, which offer slow buildup and heavy narrative, Cross the Line depicts the tragedies and social intrigue that are still found in Indonesian ports. Do not let the 70-minute duration fool you; it has a complex plot that conveys a heavy theme and issues about human trafficking.

10. Monster (2024)

  • Director: Rako Prijanto
  • Cast: Marsha Timothy, Alex Abbad, Anantya Kirana, Sultan Hamonangan
  • Runtime: 86 minutes

Do not confuse it with Hirokazu Kore-eda's film with a similar name. The latest Indonesian addition on Netflix is the project from Rako Prijanto, which only starred four actors: two adults and two children. Monster's uniqueness lies in that most of the film runs without dialogue, unlike The Boy Behind the Door (2020), which inspired this film.

The set is only in an empty house. This thriller tells the story of two children who were kidnapped and held captive in that house. The two of them have to escape in a tense story that builds from start to finish, including a hide-and-seek scene that makes the audience hold their breath.

Post a Comment for " The 10 Underrated Indonesian Movies to Watch on Netflix"