You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Under the Tree

Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in "Under the Tree."

With:
With: Marcella Zalianty, Nadia Saphira, Ayu Laksmi, Dwi Sasono, Ikranagara, Bulantrisna Djelantik, Aryani Kreigenburg Willems, I Ketut Rina.

Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and the visual pleasures are far fewer. More of the spirit-possessed, torch-bearing Calan Arang performers and less of the three intercut, metaphor-laden cover tales would have been welcome.

The three principal characters are labeled “seeds,” and their stories symbolize the cycle of life. Adopted as a child, twentysomething Maharani (Marcella Zalianty) comes to Bali in search of her roots but winds up suspected of baby trafficking. Singer Dewi (Ayu Laksmi), a 40-year-old mother-to-be, learns her fetus is damaged and debates whether to abort or to give birth. Meanwhile, spoiled teen Nian (Nadia Saphira) chases after Darma (Ikranagara), an artist who is practically living in the spirit world. The brown-toned color spectrum of the DV-shot film is disappointingly dull, and the restless swinging movements of the handheld camera sometimes near-nauseating.

Under the Tree

Indonesia

Production: An Oro-Oro Film Arts, Set Film Workshop production. Executive producer, Hanny Tanumihardja. Produced by Garin Nugroho, Dinna Jasanti. Directed by Garin Nugroho. Screenplay, Nugroho, Armantono.

Crew: Camera (color, DV-to-35mm), Vadi Sugani; editor, Andhy Pulung Widagdo; music, Kadek Suardana, Wiwiex Soedarno; art director, Budi Riyanto. Reviewed at Toronto Film Festival (Contemporary World Cinema), Sept. 7, 2008. Bahasa Indonesian dialogue. Running time: 104 MIN.

With: With: Marcella Zalianty, Nadia Saphira, Ayu Laksmi, Dwi Sasono, Ikranagara, Bulantrisna Djelantik, Aryani Kreigenburg Willems, I Ketut Rina.

More Film

  • Every Day Movie Review

    Film Review: 'Every Day'

    Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and […]

  • Coco Disney VFX

    Animated Features Rely on VFX for That Wow Factor

    Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and […]

  • Daniela Vega A Fantastic Woman

    ‘A Fantastic Woman’ Star Daniela Vega Creates History

    Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and […]

  • Yara Shahidi

    Yara Shahidi in Negotiations to Star in 'The Sun Is Also a Star' Movie Adaptation

    Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and […]

  • Joss Whedon Exits Batgirl Film

    Joss Whedon Exits as 'Batgirl' Movie Director

    Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and […]

  • 'Loving Vincent' Used Real Performances ‘Re-Imagined’

    'Loving Vincent' Uses Real-Life Performers to Animate Canvas

    Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and […]

  • New Directors New Films

    Sundance Award Winners Lead 2018 New Directors/New Films

    Prolific Indonesian helmer Garin Nugroho, a longtime festival fixture, follows his feast-for-the-senses celebration of traditional Javanese arts and rituals with a look at Balinese ones in “Under the Tree.” Like “Opera Jawa,” “Tree” mixes classic music and dance moves by renowned artists with a scripted narrative, but that formula isn’t as well integrated here and […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content