| ‘Gundala’ Received a Festive Welcome at Toronto International Film Festival 2019

Posted on Sep 13, 2019

The film ‘Gundala’ has just held an international premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in the Midnight Madness program. On September 11th in Toronto, ‘Gundala’ was screened and a Q&A session was held with director Joko Anwar and producers Bismarka Kurniawan and Wicky V. Olindo. A warm welcome was given by the Toronto International Film Festival audience, the enthusiasm was seen from the long queue that had spread an hour before the film aired.

Peter Kupowlsky, TIFF Midnight Madness programmer, with Joko Anwar, Bismarka Kurniawan, and Wicky V. Olindo in a Q&A session

On his Twitter, Anwar documented the audience who were waiting in line to get a ‘Gundala’ ticket. Around 500 people were seen waiting in the middle of the night to watch this original Indonesian hero film. A few weeks before it aired, a U.S.-based site called That Shelf included ‘Gundala’ as one of the most anticipated films at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.

After the film was played, reviews from the audience began to appear on Twitter.

Many viewers also stayed through the Q&A session which lasted about 40 minutes. The audience expressed their appreciation and enjoyed the story that was presented. They can understand the Indonesian social issues featured in the film.

TIFF will screen ‘Gundala’ for two more times on September 12th and 14th at the Scotiabank Theater.

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), which will be held on 5 – 15 September 2019, is one of the five most prestigious film festivals in the world known for its highly selective curation process, besides the Cannes Film Festival, the Venice Film Festival, the Berlin Film Festival, and the Sundance Film Festival. TIFF is visited annually by around 500.000 viewers.

TIFF is considered as a venue for films that will compete at the Oscars. Films such as AMERICAN BEAUTY, BLACK SWAN, SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE all had their premieres at this festival.

The Midnight Madness program is the most prestigious program at TIFF for genre films (non-drama) and only 10 films are selected annually from around the world. ‘Gundala’ was chosen as one of the only two films representing Asia this year. In the Midnight Madness program, there are also films from the Japanese legend director Takashi Miike and the latest film of Nicholas Cage. This program is the reigning program in the festival and a crowd favorite that is always filled with spectators.

GUNDALA is the first hero in Bumilangit Cinematic Universe, a series of films about heroes and champions from the legendary Indonesian comics. The return of Hasmi’s character to the big screen is expected to show the new generation that Indonesia has a hero to be proud of. After GUNDALA, there will be other films with other characters from the Bumilangit Universe that are ready to be produced and introduced to the public.

The film ‘GUNDALA’ tells the story of Sancaka who has been living on the streets since his parents left him. Living a hard life, Sancaka survived by thinking only about himself and his own safety. When the crime in the city is getting worse and injustice is raging throughout the country, Sancaka has to decide whether he wants to continue to live only for himself or rises to become the oppressed hero of the people.