Short film by Malang director wins Australia-Indonesia cinema competition

A film by Indonesian newcomer director Mahesa Desaga, Nunggu Teka (Waiting to Arrive), was named winner of a short film competition in the 2017 Australia-Indonesia Cinema Festival (FSAI) at XXI Senayan City cinema in South Jakarta on Sunday.

The 14-minute film follows a mother who lives alone in an old traditional house. While waiting for her only son to come home during the Idul Fitri celebration, she prepares his favorite food dishes.

Mahesa, who hails from Malang, East Java, said the story was based on his personal experience. “I am now at the age where I often ‘act busy’. When my mother asks where I am, I usually answer that I’m busy with work. Then, I thought, how does my mother feel about this?” he said.

About the author(s)

Kathy Rowland is the Managing Editor of, a registered charity that she co-founded with Jenny Daneels in 2016. The site is dedicated to supporting and promoting arts criticism with a regional perspective in Southeast Asia. Kathy has worked in the arts for over 25 years, working in the areas of critical writing and arts advocacy, with a special interest in media platforms for the arts. She is the Project Lead for ArtsEquator’s Southeast Asian Arts and Culture Censorship Documentation Project, launched in 2021. She has written extensively on censorship of arts and culture in Malaysia. She was a member of the International Programme Advisory Committee of the 8th World Summit on Arts and Culture, 2019.

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