The Year Of Living Dangerously – **(*)

Posted: February 19, 2016 in 1982, Australia, Drama, USA, War

Back in 1982 Sigourney Weaver and Mel Gibson starred in a political drama set in 1965’s Indonesia. She works at the British embassy and he’s a rookie foreign correspondent from Sydney. They meet, fall in love and have an adventurous affair in a poor country on the brink of a civil war.

There are some really cool elements in this eighties semi-classic. It helps when you see this while visiting Indonesia (pleading guilty here). You get to learn ’something’ about the turbulent history of this fascinating country and there are all kind of references to its culture. It starts with a scene in which the famous shadow playing puppet theatre is explained. It refers to the way the then president had to find a balance between the right and the left in his country, between rich and poor and (to a lesser extent) between Muslims and non Muslims. It also refers to the relationship between the main characters who are pushed to meet each other by an odd storyteller/puppet player.

The latter is a small cameraman with a distinct look and way of talking. The character is played by a woman (Linda Hunt, who won an Oscar for the part), but in all fairness, the performance is silly and absurd. The storytelling element adds a little bit to the mystical atmosphere, but it could have easily been done by an Indonesian character.

Weaver and Gibson however are a treat to look at. Their chemistry is excellent! They should make another movie together soon! Another year of living dangerously…

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0086617

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