Right in the Heart: “Siti Vampire” (2021)

Content warning: Eating issues, body image, some blood I’ve always been a fan of supernatural dramas and wished Singapore would come up with a local response to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Charmed and The Vampire Diaries. Recently, Siti Vampire, a Viddsee Original series by M. Raihan Halim, caught my interest for being that and more. With a sincere story, wonderful … Continue reading Right in the Heart: “Siti Vampire” (2021)

“Lost Cinema 20/20” (2020) – What We Find Amidst Loss

I was having lunch with a friend when we talked about whether Lost Cinema 20/20 benefited from its move to YouTube. My friend thought that digitising theatre has its losses - what could have been an immersive communal experience is now sealed off into a box on a screen. I agree with him in general, … Continue reading “Lost Cinema 20/20” (2020) – What We Find Amidst Loss

“Still Standing” (2020): A Love Letter to Things Lost

Singapore has always been a nation of contradictions. A young nation looking forward to a better future yet reluctant to leave tradition behind; a nation refusing to jeopardise the status quo yet yearning for progress; a nation held together by ‘kampung spirit’ yet comprising individuals who all have to look out for their own best … Continue reading “Still Standing” (2020): A Love Letter to Things Lost

The Ghosts on the Screen – “Stranger Things” (2019) by Nigel Cheah & Royal Estate

Time flies, never to be recalled, and so does the tunnel that carries my car into the night. Yet, perhaps against my better judgment, I cannot resist looking backwards. "Stranger Things" by Nigel Cheah and Royal Estate is an attempt at resisting the growing distance between the man I am now and the boy I … Continue reading The Ghosts on the Screen – “Stranger Things” (2019) by Nigel Cheah & Royal Estate

Style and Sincerity: Some Thoughts on Singapore’s Ethnic PSA Videos

I'm a bit late to the party, but I only just chanced upon this series of Tamil PSAs on CHAS and "Adapt and Grow" skills upgrading programmes. Since these PSAs aired during the recent Deepavali festive season, they were conceptualised as riffs off the Indian palace drama genre, much like how the Health Promotion Board … Continue reading Style and Sincerity: Some Thoughts on Singapore’s Ethnic PSA Videos

“Runaway” (2019): Penat, Yearning and Loss in Black and White

Singapore will languish if its lovers are uncritical and its critics are unloving. What Singapore needs is not sycophants but loving critics and critical lovers.Tommy Koh As of writing, Singapore has been mired in a debate about what it means to be a patriotic citizen. In a society where dissent is eyed with suspicion and … Continue reading “Runaway” (2019): Penat, Yearning and Loss in Black and White

Moving Onwards, Moving Back: Nostalgia and National Policy in “Semoga Bahagia” (2019)

Blink and you might miss it. In Gov.sg's 2019 cover of "Semoga Bahagia", our official Children's Day song composed by musical legend Zubir Said, a CPF advertisement suddenly punctures a sepia-toned daydream. A poster of an elderly citizen fades into focus as Hilmi walks out of the lift, and we're left to contemplate what "raising … Continue reading Moving Onwards, Moving Back: Nostalgia and National Policy in “Semoga Bahagia” (2019)

Space, Light and Urban Existence in “The Promise” (NTUC Income)

NTUC Income’s short film, “The Promise”, is one of the insurance company’s most well-received public awareness campaigns, with more than 9000 positive Facebook reactions as of writing. “The Promise” follows its protagonist Yong Tian (Robin Tiang) as he goes through life sandwiched between the financial needs of the generations above and beneath him. As many … Continue reading Space, Light and Urban Existence in “The Promise” (NTUC Income)

我的名字是个名牌 (My Name Is a Premium Brand): Preetipls, Humour, Anger, Race and Chinese Privilege

Look, I am angry. I apologise. I do, I apologise. [. . .] It’s not my place to be angry on a comedy stage. I’m meant to be doing… self-deprecating humour. People feel safer when men do the angry comedy. They’re the kings of the genre. When I do it, I’m a miserable lesbian, ruining … Continue reading 我的名字是个名牌 (My Name Is a Premium Brand): Preetipls, Humour, Anger, Race and Chinese Privilege