Europeans first started visiting the archipelago in the Sixteenth Century. For example the famous British circumnavigator, Sir Francis Drake arrived in Ternate in the Moluccas Islands in November 1579. Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch and British continued to arrive over the next century. Later, these countries demanded more than spices and began colonising the archipelago. The Dutch ruled the area for more than 300 years and, in 1942, the Japanese arrived in Indonesia and ruled for three years. Indonesia declared its independence on 17 August 1945. It is the world's fourth most populous country and the most populous Muslim-majority nation, with more than 250 million citizens.
Ruma Maida (released internationally as Maida's House) is a 2009 Indonesian film written by Ayu Utami(pictured), directed by Teddy Soeriaatmadja and starring Atiqah Hasiholan, Yama Carlos, Nino Fernandez, and Frans Tumbuan. It details a woman's struggle to save a historic house from a developer. Work on the film began in 2008, when Utami was asked to write a nationalism-themed script. After six months preparing the script and three months of pre-production, shooting began in Semarang, Central Java, and Kota, Jakarta. Editing took three months, after which the film premiered on 28 October 2009. Ruma Maida, deals with the importance of education, history, and pluralism. Critical reception to the film was mixed; reviewers praised the visuals but disapproved of the plot and dialogue. It was nominated for twelve Citra Awards at the 2009 Indonesian Film Festival, winning one. (Read more...)