Sometimes there is this kind of problem for me, seeing an adapted-from-novel film, that I need to carefully judge if the satisfaction (or disappointment) I got after watching the film is an achievement (or failure) of the filmmaker who brought the written story to screen or a success (or luck) of the author of the novel who wrote such a wonderful (or trashy) story. The novel always precede the film, of course, and film producers tend to adapt only best-selling novels. How about “5cm.”? It's easy, because the screenwriter and the novel author is the same person, Donny Dhirgantoro. The novel had now reached its 25th print, proving that many people like it. And adapting it to a film will surely be a specific excitement for its fans. But, this part is always tricky: if they were not careful enough, it will end up as a heart-break.
Again, I’m not a fan of the book (and that’s because I haven’t read the book), but some of my friends told me that it’s a good novel and they were so excited to see it as a movie. “5cm.” centers on a friendship of 5 youngsters: Zafran a.k.a. Juple (played by Herjunot Ali), a jobless fresh-graduate with a passion in poems and art; Genta (played by Fedi Nuril), a visionary and full-of-dream young executive; Arial (played by Denny Sumargo), a muscle-buff but shy to women; Riani (played by Raline Shah), the only girl in the group; and Ian (played by Igor ‘Saykoji’), who was still struggling for his graduation. Always being together for the last 10 years, these 5 friends decided to have a break for the next 3 months to continue their own life and dreams. Then, 3 months later, Genta prepared a surprise for the group to remark their long-lasting friendship: a trip to Mount Mahameru.
"We're on Mahameru!" - Zafran
I like the details. I like how each of the five leading roles plus Dinda (played by Pevita Pearce), Arial’s younger sister who join the group for the trip to Mahameru, was characterized specifically (and quite perfectly!) with their own interests, backgrounds, and viewpoints. And the six actors and actresses were undoubtedly suitable for their own character: it’s an achievement from the casting director to pick them. They had the chemistry among each others and all the interactions seemed so natural. The comedy was good, flowing, and surprisingly funny. I laughed, I enjoyed it so much. The best part of “5cm.”, I think, is these comical scenes. Nidji filled the film with an energetic and dynamic music, showing that this film was not supposedly touching or sad but vivacious instead. And thank you for some wonderful portraits of Mahameru. Great scenery of Mahameru was put together in the last minutes.
The biggest down side of “5cm.” was on its screenplay. Very weak, cheesy, and lost focus. Except for the comedy, the screenplay was not structured well to wrap the premise: a friendship. I mean, the film didn’t have a real conflict: there were only some subplots. Well, the reader of the novel might agree that the trip to Mahameru, which should be the grand climax of the friendship, was quite forced. See, we will spend half of the duration to have an introduction about how strong their friendship was and how each of them spent their own life in the 3-month break, while the trip to Mahameru had only less than another half of duration. And I don’t know why in the end the screenwriter was focusing on the side plots like the nationalism stuffs and the love story between each other. An addition of some super cheesy dialogues was ambitious, for it was like attached in a wrong situation. The promo of the movie and the opening scene enticed us that the movie is about a good friendship, but at last I think that it was empty inside. “Friendship” was ended up as only an echo from unknown source, and we’re not led to have a good conclusion of why we should watch it with our best friends.
Finally, what I had seen from “5cm.” was that there is this group, with a good friendship among them, a funny comedy, good casts, nice scenery of Mahameru, and a sprinkle of love story. That’s it. No conclusion. It had its touching part, but it’s not that kind you and your best friends would supposedly be inspired of. If they wanted to present a good example of friendship in a more comedic way, I guess Nirina Zubir, Aming, Desta, and Ringgo Agus Rahman did a better job in “Get Married” by Hanung Bramantyo. That said, while “5cm.” was situated to be more comical and cheerful instead of heart-warming from a friendship, what if we quit saying that it was a good film about a good friendship and take it just as a nice comedy film, instead?
▲ Good cast, funny comedy
▼ Lost focus, too cheesy
5CM. | COUNTRY Indonesia YEAR 2012 RATING Remaja RUNTIME 126 min GENRE Drama, Comedy, Adventure CAST Fedi Nuril, Herjunot Ali, Denny Sumargo, Raline Shah, Igor 'Saykoji' WRITER Donny Dhirgantoro (novel, screenplay) DIRECTOR Rizal Mantovani MORE INFO