Actors, the sole proprietor of good films

By Fatihah Zaini

If you have watched ‘Lagenda Budak Setan’, a 2010 adaptation from a novel ‘Ahadiat Akashah’, you must have noticed how legendary the film was displayed or portrayed by Lisa Surihani and Farid Kamil.

The emotions and storyline that blend together had impacted the industry, at that time it gained over RM3 million after three days of its premier. This alone shows the significance of talented actors.

Looking back, the film industry in Malaysia used to produce excellent actors who are well-trained and matured. They attended acting classes before they are eligible to act and if they are not, they would usually start off their career by becoming supporting characters. 

Production companies would open up auditions just to recruit talents from all over the country. This is to maintain the quality of produced films and attract audience to go and watch at the cinema. It’s hard work and let’s just say, it wasn’t easy to be an actor.

However, when technology emerges, social media influencers start to gain the light. These days, people prefer those who are famous and can make money. It is rather saddening to see that the quality of some films in Malaysia has dropped due to actors coming from the background of influencers.

Perhaps, the important aspect is the popularity of the influencers who most certainly will attract the audience’s interest to watch them. Or perhaps it is to look at “how good looking” the new influencers soon-to-be actors are. 

Little do they know, good films are brought to fame due to good acting, script written by talented writers and captivating cinematography. It is not just about gaining money but it is also about touching the hearts of the public.

An American film critic, Pauline Kael once said, 

“A good movie can take you out of your dull funk and the hopelessness that so often goes with slipping into a theatre; a good movie can make you feel alive again, in contact, not just lost in another city. Good movies make you care, make you believe in possibilities again.”

Hence, these elements are all carried by great actors. The film industry needs to reconsider and reflect on their chosen future artists. Believe it or not, some who managed to be on screen are those who have their own platform with thousands of followers. And those who are not are apparently a nobody.

A few weeks ago, a Malay film caused an uproar in Twitter, where the public criticised the new actress as inexperienced and being labeled as pelakon kayu. Some even said that there were no emotions and the storyline was a bit bland.

However, there are also those who supported and accepted the film saying “the actress is beautiful”.

In reviewing an excellent one, personally I will look at the main characters’ skills that stand out amongst others, and how they bring their emotions to life whilst acting out on their script. When two of these factors are well-portrayed, then other aspects would just follow through. 

Some might have different opinions on how a film should be, however, it is without doubt, that the characters play a major role in producing a good one.

People often do not realise this, maybe because to them it is a trivial matter and to appear on the screen is considered decent enough. 

Regardless of what people think, acting is in fact not an easy job and not everyone can take the role. It requires a lot of practices and skills to be an excellent one.

Again, it is a career where some invest their sweats and tears into it, not to be taken lightly by the like of us.*** 

(This article is written as part of individual assignment series for Feature Writing class)

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