Photocopier (Penyalin Cahaya): Movie Review

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"Photocopier" is one of those rare films that encompasses what it initially offers its viewers. The film tackles injustices not only to those that have been taken advantage of but to those who have been judged too. This was a nuanced look not only on the victims of sexual predators but also on Indonesian culture and society.
Sur is the latest member in her school's theater group. Their group, Mata Hari, wins a competition and decides to celebrate the win. Sur is invited and finds herself having too much fun and eventually gets drunk and blacks out. With no memory how she got home, she finds herself feeling uncomfortable as clues pop up that make her believe she was molested. But with no idea what happened the night before and others blaming her and her heavy drinking as the cause, how can Sur find her perpetrator?
Coming blind into "Photocopier", we really didn't know what we were getting ourselves into. But if you can choose a film to watch on Netflix this week, this should be it. This was a rewarding experience in so many aspects that you'll have to see it first hand to truly understand the film's narrative and emotional weight. On a technical level, the film felt authentic to its setting. Its cinematography was nothing special but it was able to capture the unique vibe and life of Indonesia - at least from the eyes of a foreigner. The film's narrative is centered around Sur - a soft spoken and diligent student who had a party gone wrong literally ruining her scholarship and her dignity. The powerful and moving performance from Shenina Cinnamon was the key in making "Photocopier" impactful. You can feel her emotions coming off the screen as she desperately pleads for someone to believe her and help her as the people who should be helping her gang up on her instead. Admittedly, the film's last quarter was a bit of a roller coaster in terms of its consistency as the film tried to tie up loose ends in a rush. But with its narrative brimming with so much heavy hitting content by that point, the aforementioned issues are minor and forgivable when analyzed against the whole film. "Photocopier", for us at least, felt similar to "Parasite" wherein you can take it at face value and it's already a great film but dive deeper and you'll see that it is a rabbit hole that just gives and gives and gives.
Rating: 5 reels

Why you should watch it:
- strong and deep narrative
- powerful performance from Shenina Cinnamon

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- it's writer ironically has a sexual assault case and puts an odd and creepy layer to the film

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