Sing to the Dawn (2008 film)

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Sing to the Dawn
(Meraih Mimpi)
Directed by Philip Mitchell
Produced by Mike Wiluan
Phil Mitchell
Phillip Stamp
Chan Pui Yin
Nia Dinata
Starring Celine Rosa Tan
Lim Kay Siu
Andrew Lua
Neo Swee Lin
Jason Chan
Denise Tan
Jamie Meldrum
Music by Tze Chin Toh
Aghi Narottama
Bemby Gusti
Ramondo Gascaro
Edited by Phil Mitchell
Infinite Frameworks Studios
Mediacorp Raintree Pictures
Media Development Authority
Scorpio East Pictures
Distributed by Golden Village Entertainment
Mediacorp Raintree Pictures
Kalyana Shira Film
Release date
  • 30 October 2008 (2008-10-30) (Singapore)
  • 16 September 2009 (2009-09-16) (Indonesia)
Running time
93 minutes
Country Singapore
Language English
Budget USD 5 million[1]

Sing to the Dawn or Meraih Mimpi is a 2008 3D computer-animated musical film. The film was produced by Infinite Frameworks (IFW), a studio animation-based Batam, Mediacorp Raintree Pictures, Media Development Authority and Scorpio East Pictures. It is loosely on the eponymous novel by Minfong Ho that was first published in 1975.

The film was released on 30 October 2008 in Singapore, then Korea, Malaysia and Russia. The film has also been screened in Pusan International Film Festival on South Korea and in Santa Monica, AS.[1] A localized version was released on 16 September 2009.


Dana (Gita Gutawa) is a little girl who lives in a small village in Batam. She lives with little sister, Rai (Patton Latupeirissa), father its Somad (Uli Herdinansyah) and grandmother commonly called "Oma" (Jajang C. Noer).

Pairot (Surya Saputra) is an entrepreneur and cruel landlord who often uses fashion and a wig styled after Elvis Presley. Pairot assessed the villagers with an oppressive land tax. He claimed that the entire land of the village was his, after he told villagers that he has a document from King Ramelan, the former ruler of the village. The village is unaware that Pairot is planning to evict the villagers and destroy the village to build a city with hotels and casinos.

After learning about Pairot's evil plans, Dana, with the help of her sister struggled to save her beloved village. With help from Grandfather Wiwien (Jose Rizal Manua), Dana tries to find the King's original will.

As a woman, Dana's life is filled with difficulties and sadness. One is that Dana was forced by her father to follow the village's patriarchal tradition. Her father wanted to marry her off to foolish Ben (Ipank), Pairot's son.

Dana and Rai are assisted by many friends, such as a group of cute jungle animals who can talk to each other, including bird parrots named Kakatu (Cut Mini), crow named Minah (Shanty), lizards (Ria Irawan), until bear named Tante Bear (Tike Priatnakusumah).

Accompanied with their animal friends Dana and Rai win scholarships and discover the landlord's secret.[2]

Voice cast[edit]

Character Voiced by
Voiced by
Dawan/Dana Celina Rosa Tan Gita Gutawa The main character, a girl who was a dreamer, but smart and brave fight
Kai/Rai Andrew Lua Patton Otlivio Latupeirissa Funds brother hobby martial arts
Grandmother/Oma Neo Swee Lin Jajang C. Noer Grand ma / Oma from Dana
Somchai/Somad Lim Kay Siu Uli Herdinansyah Dana's father, an inventor
Pairote/Pairot Jason Chan Surya Saputra Figure antagonist major, a landlords and entrepreneur evil
Bens/Ben Indra Bekti Pairot son and dumb man who never rose class.
Wichien/Wiwien Jamie Meldrum Jose Rizal Manua Old man crazy but a lot of knowledge
Cockatoo/Kakatu Denise Tan Cut Mini Bird parrots chatty kind (accented Malay in the Indonesian version)
Minah Shanty Bird crow Kakatu friend
Kadal Ria Irawan A lizards (accented Tegal in the Indonesian version)
Tante Bear Tike Priatnakusumah Bear leader of a wild beast


Dream On is the second animated 3-D film produced in Indonesia after Homeland (2004).[3] The film is the first animated 3D movie that aired widely in cinemas in Indonesia and also internationally, while Homeland was a project animated film experiment of Studio Animation Invisible.

Sing to the Dawn was produced by Infinite Frameworks (IFW), an animation studio based in Batam, Indonesia. Director Phil Mitchell worked as Executive Creative Director at Studio Infinite Frameworks.[1][4] The English-language version of the film was released on 30 October 2008 in Singapore, followed by Korea, Malaysia and Russia. The film was screened at Pusan International Film Festival in South Korea and in Santa Monica.

The film was an adaptation of a classic work of Minfong Ho, Sing to the Dawn, at the request of government Singapore who wanted to see a movie of the popular book. The film is referred to as "the film work of the nation" by Studio IFW, because of the 150 animators in their studio, almost all were Indonesian with only five expatriates, while the total number of expatriates involved only 10 people. Many animators of Yogyakarta, London, and Solo were recruited in the production of this film.[1][5] By contrast, in Singapore, the media wrote that this film is Singaporean because the initiative and funds from MediaCorp Raintree Pictures and Media Development Authority belong to Singapore.[6]

Production was done completely in Batam over three years at a cost of 5 million U.S. dollar. After the English version of the film was completed in the year 2008, it was distributed to various countries. Sing to the Dawn was not immediately released into Indonesia because IFW wanted to introduce the film to an international audience first.[1][4]

Sing to the Dawn was localized to Indonesia in 2009 with the title Dream On. Nia Dinata was recruited to assist in the localization and scenario and Erwin Gutawa (composer) and father of (Gita Gutawa) wrote new music to accompany the film. In addition to language, the story was overhauled. Dream On was finally released in Indonesia on 16 September 2009 by Kalyana Shira Films.

In releasing this movie, Kalyana Shira Films in addition to working with IFW collaborated with foreign companies and other local firms such as Mediacorp Raintree Pictures, Scorpio East Pictures, Indika Pictures and Media Development Authority from Singapore.

Differences between films and novel[edit]

In addition to the localization of the names of the characters, the setting in Dream On was moved to Batam, from a small Thai village.

According to Jakarta Globe, Dream On was filled with exciting adventures and was well-suited for young children.[4]

Pairot never dressed up like Elvis in the novel. Dana (Dawan, the original name of the character) does not exist in the novel. The novel's main story is the conflicts villagers experienced as women in traditional Southeast Asia. In the movie Sing to the Dawn the story is centered on Pairot's plans to evict the villagers.

The film has less diulasnya conflict experienced between Dana and her father, Somad (Somchai) that set her up with Ben (Bens). After Dana and Rai won the scholarship, Somad told Rai that he did not believe that women need education. This scene is not at all developed in Dream On.[4]

In the premiere of Sing to the Dawn in Jurong Bird Park, Singapore, Ho Minfong found the movie be very different from the book and not to be compared with each other. According to Ho, the film Sing to the Dawn successfully demonstrated the character and spirit of Dawan / Fund. The film also uses animation to give visual jokes and humor with talking animals. Ho said that if she were to give judgment to the film, she would give it 11 out of 10.[7]

Cameo performances[edit]

  • Director Joko Anwar appeared as guest star and contributed his voice in the film as Ubay.
  • Bemby Gusti is a musician who contributed the voice of Spider.


External links[edit]