:: December 28,
2004: Three American critics vote for The Big Durian as among
the "Best Undistributed Films of 2004"
in the annual survey in The
Village Voice poll.|
:: October 2,
2004: The Big Durian won a Special Mention in the Dragons
& Tigers competition of the 2004
International Film Festival, here it screened twice. The jury
cites the movie
"for its witty and unusual handling of an incident which
intimately allows deep insights into the racial tensions in Malaysian
:: Sept 2004:
Cahiers du Cinema publishes
a review of The Big Durian in its September 2004 issue, titled
'Rumeur malaise', written by Juliette Van Wassenhove.
:: Sept 22, 2004: The Big Durian
screens in the Dragons & Tigers Competition for East Asian Cinema
at the Vancouver International
Film Festival later this month. Four of Amir's earlier shorts
- Lost, Friday, Checkpoint and Pangyau - will also be shown. Ho Yuhang's
"Min" is the only other Malaysian film to be screened.
:: July 22, 2004: In its second Japanese
festival, The Big Durian screens at the Focus on Asia
Fukuoka International Film Festival in September.
:: July 1, 2004:
The Big Durian makes its French premiere at the Marseille
International Documentary Festival this month.
:: June 5, 2004: The Big Durian makes
its African premiere later this month at the 25th
Durban International Film Festival
:: May 16, 2004: The Big Durian won
the main Justin Louis Award in the Professional Category of the first
Film Festival in Kuala Lumpur. A full-house screening was held
a day earlier at HELP Institute.
:: April 24, 2004: A Spanish-language
review is published at the Argentinian site Otro
Campo after its screening at Buenos Aires.
:: April 10, 2004: The Big Durian
screens in three more festivals in the coming month. It competes in
South Korea's Jeonju
International Film Festival; competes and makes its South American
premiere at the Buenos
Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente; and makes
its UK premiere at the Commonwealth
:: March 4, 2004: The Big Durian
is in the Asian DV competition of next month's Hong
Kong International Film Festival. Also at the festival are the
new Malaysian feature "The Beautiful Washing Machine" and
short "Goodbye", both by James
:: March 3, 2004:
In its third American festival, The Big Durian screens at the Amnesty
International Film Festival in Pittsburg later this month.
:: Jan 31, 2004:
The Big Durian returns to Kuala Lumpur! There are two screenings today,
at 1pm and 3pm at The Stonor Centre (formerly Sobranie Classic Cinema),
3 Lorong Stonor. Admission is RM10 and reservations can be made
by calling Lu Sean at (03) 2141 9620. Amir will be present after the
:: Jan 28, 2004: The Big Durian screens
at the Institute
of South-East Asian Studies of the National University of Singapore
today, with Amir giving a talk.
:: Jan 15, 2004:
Hollywood bible Variety
weighs in with its review. Read it here!
:: Jan 14, 2004:
The Big Durian screens in the ASEAN competition of the Bangkok
International Film Festival
later this month. Two other Malaysian movies, "Paloh" and
"Room to Let" are also competing.
:: Jan 12, 2004: Utusan Malaysia
reports on The
Big Durian's historic selection for the Sundance Film Festival.
:: December 9, 2003: The Big Durian
is the first Malaysian movie to be selected for the famous Sundance
Film Festival in the USA, where it screens in the International
Documentary category next month.
:: November 8, 2003:
paced, a story that once shattered KL city now resonates through the
present in an entertaining, humorous and reflective film,"
says the catalogue for the International
Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam.
:: November 6, 2003:
"Underground": An article by John Krich
in the Far Eastern
Economic Review on Malaysian independent cinema leads off by discussing
The Big Durian. Click here
for the text on this site.
:: November 6,
The Big Durian makes its European premiere in the First Appearance
competition of the Amsterdam
International Documentary Film Festival
:: November 5, 2003:
University of Hawaii campus paper Ka Leo O Hawaii highly recommends
The Big Durian as a "one film that you do not want to
miss at this year's HIFF." Read the review at the Kaleo.org
site, or the permanent link here.
:: November 3,
FIPRESCI juror Stephen Teo's report on the Yamagata festival entitled
the Boundaries of Documentary' comments on The Big Durian.
:: October 31,
A blogger at tontonfilem.blog-city.com writes a glowing review.
["...witty, kelakar, bijaksana, sarcastic, bukan
semua yang suka, tapi ramai juga yang makan..itulah Big Durian"]
:: October 25,
Read the 2003 Hawaii
International Film Festival catalogue description of The Big Durian
written by Tom Brislin here.
:: October 20, 2003:
The Big Durian makes its North American premiere in early November
at the Hawaii International Film
:: October 16, 2003:
The Big Durian just received a Special Mention for the Ogawa Shinsuke
Prize at the Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival.
The jury citation for The Big Durian reads: "While taking up a
historical incident of superficially little relevance, the film reveals
a deep social consciousness through a non-serious filmic style. The
director uses his eccentric imagination and variety; full means of
expression to reach a politically apathetic young audience."
:: October 12, 2003:
Mingguan Malaysia carries a review by Saifullizan Tahir, titled "The Big Durian
Filem Malaysia". Click here if the link has expired.
:: October 4, 2003:
Local blog Gonzalos.blogspot.com has much to say about the
film including some colourful quotes on its Oct 4 posting ["Bagus siot cite nih, beb!
Weh, bila kita nak pegi tengok lagi sekali?"], and even a
deconstruction of the "The Big Durian" title (found in the comment
index of the Oct 4 posting).
:: September 27
The Big Durian screens again in Kuala Lumpur in October! The venue
Classics Cinema and the screening dates are Wed (1 Oct) - Sat
(4 Oct) and also Mon (27 Oct) - Wed (29 Oct). Admission is RM10. For
bookings and more inquiries, please contact Lu Sean at (03) 2141 9620
or by email.
:: September 23 , 2003:
The Big Durian screens on Wednesday, October 1, at 7pm to students
of the Film School of Tokyo. The screening will be followed
by a discussion between Amir and Yamagata festival curator Fujioka
Asako. Click here for an English article about the school.
:: August 14, 2003:
The Big Durian screens in October in the New Asian Currents section
of Japan's prestigious Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival.
It is one of only 30 works selected from over 800 entries.
:: July 29, 2003:
In its third overseas festival, The Big Durian screens next month
at the Cinemanila International Film Festival in The Philippines.
:: July 10, 2003:
Abror Rivai's review in Siasah magazine, "Kemelut
politik nasional, perkauman dan terkekangnya media dalam "The Big
Durian" is now available online here. The article is also hosted on this site here.
:: July 9, 2003:
The Big Durian screens next week at the Cinefan Film Festival
in India, together with Amir's 6horts and three other features from
:: June 25, 2003:
The Big Durian is cited by Teng Qian Xi in Singaporean newspaper Today,
in a commentary on freedom of expression and creativity. Click here for the online article on the ChannelNewsAsia
website, or go here if that link has expired.
:: June 22, 2003:
The Cubit Manja column in Mingguan Malaysia carries a report about The Big Durian ("Amir menghasilkannya
dengan waras lagi terbuka").
:: June 16, 2003:
The Big Durian screens this Sunday, June 22 at 3 pm
at the Five Arts Centre, 27, Lorong Datuk Sulaiman 7, Taman Tun Dr
Ismail. Admission is RM10. There will also be a free, informal workshop
conducted by Amir at the same venue from 5-7 pm for those who are
interested in making their own non-fiction video projects. Participants
should at least have a rough idea of the themes they are interested
in pursuing. For details on the screening or the workshop please call
Gan at 012 6911 398.
Big Durian screened at 4:30 pm today to over a hundred students at
Sunway College, as part of their Malaysian Studies class.
:: June 5, 2003:
KLue's cover story on The Big Durian and its premiere
in Singapore is available here.
:: June 2, 2003:
Kakiseni.com publishes a review by Kam Raslan. ("The Big
Durian shows how perceptions of events, facts, “facts”, the media
and the government muddy our ability to understand what is happening
around us and we invariably fall back on the one thing we know we
can always trust – rumour.")
:: June 1, 2003:
The June print edition of Siasah magazine carries a review
by Abror Rivai ("Filem ini wajib ditonton. Bukan semata-mata
kerana persenyawaan cereka dengan dokumentari, tetapi kerana subjek
yang dipilih agak luarbiasa berat bagi sebuah filem Malaysia.")
Siasah is priced at RM4.50 and is on sale now.
:: May 27, 2003:
Tickets now on sale! The Big Durian will screen on June 4
& 5 (5pm) and June 6 (9 pm) at the Actors Studio Bangsar. It is
part of a festival called Raise the Roof! organised by the Instant
Cafe Theatre Company. Tickets are RM 20 and RM10 (students). All shows
will be followed by a Q&A with Amir. Call the theatre at (03)
2094 0400 to book your seats.
:: May 25, 2003:
More comments on The Big Durian from the SIFF
message board following the Singapore
Film Society's screenings of Amir's films.
Click here to go to a complete list of comments from the
SIFF board. ("It was wonderful to see the Malaysians speaking
in their Cantonese, Malay and other dialects in the film. In addition,
it was precious how the sarcasm and criticism of the post-colonial
political system came through in the film")
:: May 22, 2003:
1. The current issue of the fortnightly KLue magazine (May
22 - June 3) has a cover story on The Big Durian and its premiere
in Singapore. The 4-page article is written by Brian Yap ("Part
of Amir's gift is his ability to make insightful political,
social and cultural commentary imbued with his near-trademark dry
humour and cheeky wit ... The Big Durian is a landmark achievement.").
KLue is available at all good news-stands.
2. Composer Hardesh
Singh writes an article on the process of the sound-mixing of
The Big Durian, "Cleaning out the Noise" in the Audiophile section
of The Star
3. In the first of its campus screenings, The Big
Durian screened at 2pm at the Faculty of Creative MultiMedia, MultiMedia
University today. The auditorium was almost full and the enthusiastic
Q&A went on for half an hour.
:: May 11, 2003:
Review of The Big Durian found on the FilmsAsia website rates it 6 out of 10.
:: May 8, 2003:
The Big Durian will be shown as part of The Instant Cafe
RAISE THE ROOF! Festival in early June. Screening
details: 4-5 June @ 5pm
and 6 June @ 9pm at the Actors Studio Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. All screenings
will be followed by a dialogue session with Amir. Ticket Prices: RM20
RM10 (students). For reservations or more info, call Adeline of Instant
at (03) 21485192 / 5234 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
:: May 6, 2003:
The Singapore Film Society will present 'Thorny
Tales: Upfront with Amir Muhammad' on May 24 at the Goethe
Institute, Singapore to members only, showcasing The Big Durian and
Amir's short film series 6horts.There will
be a Q&A session after the screening as well as a breakdown of
selected scenes. For details, surf to their website, email http://email@example.com
or (65) 901 70160.
:: May 5, 2003:
Amir wrote a little feature on the movie in Singaporean pop
culture mag BigO.
:: April 30, 2003:
The first overseas screening at the 16th Singapore International
Film Festival was a success and had a lively, lengthy Q&A.
Read some of the responses from audience members at the SIFF website
message board here ("The first truly Malaysian movie").
[Note: Amir also won Best Asian Digital Short at SIFF for Kamunting, for the second consecutive year]
:: April 26, 2003:
Malaysiakini's report on The Big Durian's premiere
is mirrored here.
:: April 23, 2003:
The worldwide premiere of The Big Durian! Click here for the first review, written by the blogger
known as Nizam Zakaria ("Bagus jika ia dijadikan
bahan kaji selidik mengenai budaya Malaysia"), who also took
a couple of pictures of the maiden screening in Kuala Lumpur.
Another review of The Big Durian can be found in Zulhabri's blog
("Aku dapat merasakan ketegangan yang wujud di ketika itu
antara kaum Melayu dan Cina.")
:: April 16, 2003:
The Big Durian will premiere at the Actors
Studio Theatre (Kuala Lumpur) on April 23, 2003 at 8.30pm. The Premiere
is a charity screening and a minimum donation of RM50 is required.
Proceeds will go to Malaysiakini.com in support of freedom of expression
and the press. An informal discussion with the cast will be held
after the screening.
Please contact Charmaine Ong at firstname.lastname@example.org
or tel: (603) 2283-5567 to get an invite pass. To pick up your invitation,
come to Malaysiakini's office, 2-4 Jalan Bangsar Utama 9, between
9 a.m. - 5 p.m., by Monday, April 21.
A 6pm screening and Q&A will be held on the same day and venue
but for students only. Invite passes for this screening are a minumum
of RM 10 and can be purchased at the door as long as you have a
valid student ID.
:: April 13, 2003:
Cast page updated with cast pix, bio and comments.
:: April 11, 2003:
Photo Stills page updated with low-res pix.
:: April 1, 2003:
The (revamped) official website of The Big Durian goes online.
:: January 27, 2003:
Pre-production for The Big Durian was featured in The Star.