Srikandi is a female figure from the Indian Mahabharata epic that changes gender to live and fight as an equal among men. This character is a role model for eight highly personal perspectives on lesbian, bisexual and transidentity life in Islamic Indonesia. The film, which began as a collective project, moves from personal essay into a radical conceptual exploration of queer politics and maps out self-confidently the situation in which a generation of women are beginning to find a voice. Politics, identity, the search for substitute families, the fear of violence, even among lesbians, the social exclusion of minorities and self-imposed silence are some of the topics addressed, as are the deliberate eschewal of labels for one’s own life and one’s personal religious beliefs and the wearing of the hijab. Making use of local forms of storytelling, the film also demonstrates that indigenous role models exist for strong women and alternative gender identities. Javanese shadowplay links and interweaves the different stories of the protagonists, but ANAK-ANAK SRIKANDI is goes far beyond being a typical episodic film.
by Children of Srikandi Collective
Germany / Indonesia 2012