2.5 out of 5
Edensor was the third installment of Laskar Pelangi (The Rainbow Troops) series. The first film was released in 2008 and the second released a year after, both were directed by Riri Riza. All films were adapted from series of novels of same names.
Now, I have said in my review of the first film that I’m not actually a big fan of the novel. It wasn’t bad per se, but I’m not really into elaborate poetic words. In the first and second films, director Riri Riza stripped all of those elaborations and left nothing but the core, which in my opinion made the films much better than the book.
The third film, Edensor, was not directed by Riri Riza. Benni Setiawan took over the job. I have to be honest Edensor was not as exciting as the first film. The local child actors in the first film were hillarious to watch as they brought life to the screen. In Edensor only few of them appeared as flashbacks — I must say that they grew up to be a bunch of handsome young men — the story itself centered on the lives of Ikal and his cousin, Arai.
Both men got scholarships to study in Sorbonne, Paris. Two Indonesian country boys found themselves living in a foreign city and have to adjust to foreign culture. Hillarity ensued when Ikal and Arai had to struggle with their French, receiving slaps from Parisienne women every now and then.
Ikal also had 3 bffs who came from third world countries just like him. They were from Georgia, Mexico, and India. Manooj and Gonzalez, from India and Mexico respectively, provided the much needed comic relieves in the film.
Aside from Ikal’s silly banter with his mates, there were also tensions in Ikal and Arai’s relationship. Arai considered Ikal spent too much time doing frivolous things such as hanging out. Ikal’s grade slipped in the first semester, and Arai constantly fussing that their purpose in Paris was to study, nothing else.
Ikal, for a short time, fell in love with the beautiful Katya. Their relationship started quite rough due to their different cultures. Katya who was a German believed in a more liberal type of love, while conservative Ikal considered love to be sacred and binding. Unfortunately, Ikal still thought about the love of his life. In the end, Ikal and Katya ended their relationship. They parted as friends. The last 30 minutes of the film was about Ikal and Arai rummaging through Paris, searching for the girl whom Ikal loved since childhood.
Despite bits of dramas here and there, this film was flat. There wasn’t any dramatic tensions nor very funny moment. If the first film was about how important education was and what did those impoverished children do to stay at school, then the second film talked mostly about Ikal’s mood swings. It didn’t carry a strong message like the prequels did.
The film was entertaining. But it could be better. Oh, prop master, it was Thomas Jefferson picture that Ikal put on his bedroom wall, not Adam Smith. They were different people from different countries.