Indonesia’s submission for the Oscars, coming-of-age drama ‘Yuni,’ to hit theaters on Dec. 9

Still from ‘Yuni’ (2021), directed by Kamila Andini. Photo: Fourcolours Film/TIFF
Still from ‘Yuni’ (2021), directed by Kamila Andini. Photo: Fourcolours Film/TIFF

For those of you who have been waiting to watch Indonesian coming-of-age drama Yuni, it’s only going to be a month until you can watch it on the big screen, as production house Fourcolours Film announced that the film will be screened in Indonesian cinemas starting from Dec. 9.

Set in Banten province, Yuni tells the story of the titular character, played by Arawinda Kirana, who is a clever teenager who dreams of going to college. However, she must face an obstacle in the form of cultural expectations, which wants her to get married as soon as she graduates high school. 

Yuni turns down marriage proposals from two men she barely knows, putting her under pressure due to the belief that a woman who rejects three proposals would never marry. The pressure heightens when a third man proposes to Yuni, leaving her having to choose between believing in the myth or chasing after her dreams.

Directed by Kamila Andini, Yuni also stars Asmara Abigail, Kevin Ardilova, Marissa Anita, Muhammad Khan, Ayu Laksmi, and Dimas Aditya, among others. The film received 14 nominations at the Indonesian Film Festival (FFI), including best picture, best director for Kamila Andini, best actress for Arawinda Kirana, best supporting actress for Asmara Abigail, and best original screenplay for Kamila and Prima Rusdi. The awarding ceremony will be held tonight.

Yuni has received rave reviews since it premiered at the coveted Toronto International Film Festival in mid-September, where it also took home the festival’s Platform Prize. It has since been selected as Indonesia’s submission to compete in the Best International Feature Film category at next year’s Academy Awards.​​

Kamila, whose recent works include arthouse drama Sekala Niskala/The Seen and The Unseen (2017) and Sendiri Diana Sendiri/Following Diana (2015), said the life story of her household assistant inspired her to direct Yuni

Prior to its wide release, Yuni had a limited screening last month in Jakarta and several cities in Banten, West Java, and Central Java. While most Indonesian filmgoers might have already seen the trailer for TIFF 2021, the preview for the Indonesian release of Yuni can be seen below:

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