Like other regions in the world, Asia before and after the pandemic certainly underwent transformation. Health, which impacts the socio-economic pulse of the community, also affects production and consumption patterns. Quite a lot of feature films that have been in production for years had to postpone their screening schedules. However, at the same time, production for the small screen and/or OTT (over-the-top) has been gradually increasing. This provides an opportunity for more and more diverse types of films to be produced, both in terms of genre and duration.
The pandemic didn’t only affect the economic sphere of cinema. Social distancing and reduced gatherings forced filmmakers to come up with film production strategies that were safe for the people involved. The films included in the shorts compilation of the Asian Perspective program show how films, especially those produced under strict health protocol enforcement, were tactically produced both in terms of ideas and cinematographic techniques. In this program, we will find films that strategically used technical production methods such as using a first-person documentary approach with ideas revolving around family, films that present a single character, and those using a simple production scale.
Given that the post-pandemic conditions have gradually improved, at least in most countries in Asia, of course, there are also films that seem to have started to reflect on the pandemic. Raging from the issue of identity which is restrained not only by the state but also by family, sexual violence, dysfunctional families, religious dogma, and structural oppression. These problems existed before the pandemic, and in the end, since the pandemic ended, all these problems have not been resolved. They are back and remain to be talked about through cinema.
Ayu Diah Cempaka