Student group in Makassar riots against teen flick ‘Dilan 1991’ for kissing, student-teacher insubordination scenes

Students protesting against Indonesian teen flick ‘Dilan 1991’ in Makassar, South Sulawesi. Photo: Instagram

It seems like millennials in Indonesia can’t stop talking about Dilan 1991, the sequel to the teen mega hit Dilan 1990, the highest grossing Indonesian film of 2018. But not all young Indonesians want to get caught up in the movie’s love story — a group of them in the South Sulawesi capital of Makassar even rioted against the film during its nationwide release yesterday.

A group of students calling themselves Aliansi Mahasiswa Peduli Pendidikan Nasional (Alliance of College Students Who Care About National Education), held a protest rejecting the screening of Dilan 1991 outside the XXI Cinema at Panakkukang Mall yesterday evening.

According to reports, the students were demanding that Dilan 1991 be pulled from Makassar cinemas because its prequel depicted characters being disrespectful towards their teachers, students being involved in motorcycle gangs, as well as teenagers kissing. It appears the protesters haven’t even seen Dilan 1991 to be able to ascertain whether or not the sequel contained similar depictions of “immoral” values.

Dilan was designed to normalize the idea that teenagers kissing is acceptable,” said Rudini, one of the protest’s leaders, told Detik.

In this video below, some students grabbed a huge cardboard cutout of Alita: Battle Angel and tried to use it to close access to the cinema.

Several security guards can be seen trying to contain the rioting students, to the point that they start violently pushing each other.

Police were soon called to the scene and dispersed the protesters.

“Regarding tonight’s demonstration, police saw this as a violation of regulations on rallies. Especially because this area [Panakkukang mall] is private property, more specifically the XXI [cinema],” Panukkang Police Chief Ananda Fauzi Harahap said yesterday, as quoted by CNN Indonesia. 

No arrests were made during the riot.

Max Pictures, the studio behind Dilan 1991, denied the students’ accusations of immorality in the film.

Dilan 1991 has passed the censorship of Indonesia’s Film Censorship Institution (LSF), and none of the scenes in the film are problematic,” Ody said yesterday, as quoted by Detik, adding that the studio plans to take legal action against the protesters.

As chaotic as last night’s protest was, it didn’t affect Dilan 1991’s box office numbers in the slightest —  the film just broke the all-time Indonesian record for the biggest ever opening day audience with 80,000 tickets sold during special screenings in Bandung last Sunday and 720,000 during its nationwide release yesterday (beating Avengers: Infinity War’s 677,000 first-day haul)

Check out the trailer for Dilan 1991 below if you’re among the few who haven’t already. Be warned, the characters totally hold hands at one point.

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