Movie Review: Berani Jadi Papa Blatantly Lacks Originality
Starring: Ungku Hariz, Dato' Awie, Rykarl Iskandar
I've never really had much of a good opinion of the local film production scene. Blame it on my lack of exposure to good Malaysian films growing up, or whatever, I don't know. But that said, my opinion these days has been changing for the better, thanks to a few choice quality films ("Tombiruo", anyone?).
So when "Berani Jadi Papa" walked up to the pitch, I, despite my misgivings after reading the summary, was ready to receive it with open arms.
What is it about?
After his wife's death, Kamal's (Ungku Hariz) relationship with his son, Ayim (Rykarl Iskandar), takes a turn for the worse. This is due to Kamal having to look after Ayim and maintain the house on top of having a full-time job. With so many things going on in his life, Kamal unintentionally neglects and forgets things about Ayim, going as far as to forget what school Ayim goes to. Ayim, in turn, resents his absentee father and misses his mother dearly.
With how little time both father and son spend together on a daily basis, it is no wonder that they barely understand the challenges the other faces, let alone each other. Of course, all of this is a recipe for disaster, and as tensions reach their peak, both Kamal and Ayim clash.
And as fate would have it, a mysterious smoke envelopes them, causing them to switch bodies.
Is it worth a watch?
Alas, my misgivings were proven true with "Berani Jadi Papa". No matter how hard I tried to find something likable about the film, I was constantly hindered by uncanny resemblances to the Hollywood film from years ago, "Freaky Friday".
And I don't mean in the way that it sports the body-swap trope, no. There are plenty of movies out there with that trope that manage to stand on their own. I mean it in the way that nearly the entire story structures itself.
I mean it in the way that Ayim and his father, Kamal, have a strained relationship, up to the point where they yelled at each other that they don't understand one another. I mean it in the way that the both of them struggle to live each other's lives, when they had initially ridiculed how easy the other's life was. I mean it in the way that Ayim is bullied in school, how Kamal struggles to wake up his own son, how the son is missing another parent, how the father is a perfectionist while the son is problematic, how the message of the entire film is essentially the same--goodness, even the way they body swapped back is the same!
The only notable difference, besides a few small ones, is that instead of the story being between mother and daughter, it is between father and son.
Worst of all, the film itself is hardly memorable. Even Dato' Awie couldn't save it.
"Berani Jadi Papa" is showing on Astro First Eksklusif
Written by Crunch's Melissa Kartini