Film Review: Snakeskin
How can a variety of events that happened in a country be a matery to see that country’s future? A various problem of races, ethnics, gender, sectarian, up to social, economy, and political cases could be a potray of a nation. Snakeskin is trying to read the variety of Singapore’s histories and events they’ve been pulling through to see how bright is their future.
Singapore in its growth have been pulled through so much events. Various conflicts about races and ethnics, as a country that is having several big races that live together in one land such as Chinese, Arabian, Indian, and Malay. Sectarian and political conflict, and gender issues and how they’ve supported one and another.
No one knows that a cute cat in their lap was a Japanese soldier that attacked their harbor in the past, or opera actress in the photo that looked like our mother is actually her in the past life. And more, no one knows that a suggestion of using stage name could affect someone’s career in the future. Those mystical things that could affect someone’s past life or future life as beliefs that live in the small land of Singapore, as a potray of strong friction between their cultures.
This is also later used by Daniel Hui to arrange the narration in Snakeskin. Trying to disclose the nostalgia of memories that inviting the audience to know more about Singapore since they were still a collonial land until now, a sovereign country. Through the fragments of memory of their various issues, tale-told from personal perspective that represents each conflicts. Snakeskin then disentangled the nostalgia about one conflict to another, then arranged it as an epic narration to foresee Singapore in the future.
Using periodical plot that disentangled the events one by one, Daniel Hui tried to create memories disclosure to the audiences. Toying with memories and remembrances of past events which is actually timeless in people’s minds, Snakeskin is inviting the audience to take a step to the past. Reminding us about the events that had escorted Singapore to become a developed country like now which had become a mecca of modernity by its fellow Southasian countries. And making Singaporean to be more “Singapore”. A national creation to enhance the sense of nationalism and inflicts the ideas to build the country by seeing existing social issues.
Utilising the power of cinema to bring out fragments of memory to form a narration in people’s mind, Snakeskin is inviting its audience to experience the journey of Singapore in potraying its future. Attempting to know more about Singapore to be more Singapore. A specific creation for Singaporean, yet can be enjoyed by other people from outside of Singapore as an effort to read a history about their nation. Propaganda of myths about taboo things that contained and believed by each cultures are presented in this film and used as an anchore of narrative establishment. This narration is then outlined to our minds through personal situation, allowing the audiences to interpret the existing narration with their own circumstances. A film with open perspective to potray a country development history. Snakeskin emphasis the blurred lines beween truth and fiction. [Ellyta Rahmayandi]
Daniel Hui | 105‘ | Singapore | 2014
9 Desember 2016 | IFI-LIP YOGYAKARTA | 18:30