Rumidjah and her son Bakti (both on the bike) from the film "Position Among The Stars"
Position Among The Stars
Sundance Film Festival
Director: Leonard Retel Helmrich
"Position Among The Stars" provides a glimpse into the lives of three generations: grandmother Rumidjah, her son Bakti, and her deceased daughter’s daughter, Tari. This documentary was masterfully filmed. The director and cinematographer Leonard Retel Helmrich did a fine job of accurately displaying Indonesia in an artful way. "Position Among The Stars" captures the beauty in everyday reality such a city workers spraying down the slums of Jakarta with bug poisoning (it rids against Dengue Fever). Helmrich takes rough cityscape images and juxtaposes them with shots of the remote village where Rumidjah grew up. On the big screen it creates a visceral experience. The grandmother still lives in the village but visits her granddaughter and son in Jakarta every few months. In 111 minutes of edited documentary footage, we see the lives of this family touch on many issues—globalization, preservation of native culture, education, religious clashes between Christianity and Muslim culture, xenophobia. "Position Among The Stars" is an intriguing look into the current obstacles one must overcome living in Jakarta today.