Film screening, discussion Refugees Up Close

Refugees Up Close_Alimudin_Jakarta © Courtesy of Dave Lumenta

7.30 PM


Pusat Kebudayaan Jerman Jakarta
Jl. Sam Ratulangi 9-15
10350 Jakarta

Premiere: Respite (Andrianus Oetjoe) & Performing out of Limbo (Betharia Nurhadist & Indrawan Prasetyo) | Discussion after screening with Dr. Antje Missbach, Dr. Dave Lumenta, Andrianus Oetjoe, Rhino Ariefiansyah, Hamza, Alex

Over 14,000 refugees live in Indonesia. Many come here to seek passage to another country, such as Australia or the United States, through United Nations resettlement programs. In the process, they wait in limbo for years. Some grow up here, learn the language, make friends, and fall in love with the people and the country. But they cannot stay because Indonesia has not signed the 1951 UN Refugee Convention and does not accept refugees. The two films depict the lives of refugee youth in Makassar and Jakarta, and the friendships they build with Indonesians.


Director: Andrianus Oetjoe

Refugees Up Close_Respite_Makassar © Courtesy of Andrianus Oetjoe
Two thousand refugees live in Makassar under the care of the United Nations Human Rights Commission as they wait indefinitely for resettlement. They cannot study or work. As months turn into years and boredom takes its toll, they must fight their greatest enemy: hopelessness. The documentary follows two young Afghans: Mostafa, the soccer-loving teenager, and Yama, a charismatic man who looks as though life in transit has stolen his youth. The two befriend locals as they catch a glimmer of a life that could be. But that life becomes even more uncertain when officials enforce further restrictions on their movements.

Performing Out of Limbo

Directors: Betharia Nurhadist & Indrawan Prasetyo
Producers: Rhino Ariefiansyah & Dave Lumenta
Hamza and Alex arrived in Indonesia in 2015 after fleeing the Oromo region of Ethiopia. The two are scraping a living in Jakarta as refugees while awaiting resettlement. But at age 24 and 18, they are also youths with dreams and passions. Do they put their lives on hold or find a way to live it? The documentary follows Hamza and Alex as their passion for music leads them to unexpected encounters. Soon they find themselves collaborating with local university students, their lecturers, and the guitarist Baron who co-founded the popular Indonesian band GIGI, to compose and perform about love and life. As they sing, jam and rap to EDM about a beautiful girl at the Pondok Cina station, the lines between refugees and citizens begin to blur.