Columnist

Aidil Rusli

Aidil Rusli loves rock 'n' roll, still believes in the words "indie" and "underground", and after all these years still sings in his band Couple myspace.com/couple. You can get in touch with Aidil by emailing: encik.aidil@gmail.com

The year in blockbusters — so far

JUNE 8 — We’ve now entered the most exciting time of the year for mainstream movie fans: summer! This means we are going to be treated to some of... READ MORE

A time to ‘Kil’

JUNE 1 — Before I even start, let me first make it clear that the film I’m going to write about was written and directed by a friend of mine, and I... READ MORE

A little perspective

MAY 25 ― As the English Premier League came to an end last Sunday, the Spurs fan in me simply couldn’t help but feel disappointed at missing out... READ MORE

Can’t wait for next season!

MAY 18 — With Manchester United winning the English Premier League title a few weeks in advance (shame on you Manchester City and Chelsea for not... READ MORE

When pop infiltrates underground metal

MAY 11 — As a child who grew up musically in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, metal and black T-shirts were pretty much an unavoidable fact of... READ MORE

Political films you may have missed

MAY 4 — It’s voting time again, and in honour of the electric political mood that we’re all in at the moment, let’s take a look at some excellent... READ MORE

Auteurist TV — the new frontier

APRIL 27 — For quite a few years now, “the death of film” has been a constant theme in editorials and discussions regarding the future of film as... READ MORE

Check these five albums out… NOW!

APRIL 20 — I think it’s pretty much a given for any Malaysian that whenever we have a friend visiting from another country, the first thing we’d... READ MORE

Ben Wheatley’s art of killing

APRIL 13 ― It’s almost kind of a default setting for most Malaysians who like to see themselves as “different” tell people that they like British... READ MORE

Malaysian cinema in 2013: First-quarter report

APRIL 6 — March 2013 has ended and I almost didn’t realise that the year’s first quarter is already over. Unlike 2012, which I’d call the year of... READ MORE

Welcome back, The Pinholes!

MARCH 30 ― As easy listening as power pop may be, you’d be surprised at how hard it is to actually find bands that play power pop or just... READ MORE

Portugal – the next cinematic hotspot?

MARCH 23 — In the mid to late ‘90s, it was Iran. In the 2000s it was Romania. And for the past few years it looks like South America (with... READ MORE

Otai rocks!

MARCH 16 — One of the most unique things about Malaysia is our deep respect for our elders. It doesn’t matter what your ethnic background is, if... READ MORE

Squeaky bum time

MARCH 9 — As I’m writing this, Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) have just beaten Inter Milan 3-0 in the first leg of the last 16 round of the Europa... READ MORE

Getting it right this time?

MARCH 2 — I think it’s fair to say that quite a lot of Malaysians think that local films are a joke, which is a fair assessment, judging from the... READ MORE

My Oscar 2013 predictions

FEB 23 – It’s that time of the year again when the attention of the (movie-crazy) world is on the upcoming 2013 Oscars. Even if you’re an... READ MORE

Kindness on film

FEB 16 — Some people believe that the whole point of indie films is to be different from Hollywood. Most of the time people take this to mean films... READ MORE

Very nice indeed

FEB 9 — It’s not every day that you’re lucky enough to feel goose bumps at a concert. Even when watching an international act do their thing... READ MORE

Juvenile thrills

FEB 2 — January’s come to a close, and as usual I’ve made it a point to go and see as many Malaysian films as possible and with the exception of... READ MORE

A shortcut to Hollywood

Jan 26 – Obviously I’m not a Hollywood director nor am I someone who’s “made it” in Hollywood, so you can take everything I’m about to write here... READ MORE

Reactions to the 2013 Oscar nominations

JAN 19 — Of all the years that the Oscars decided to go all indie on us, they had to choose this year, and dare I say, they chose the wrong films... READ MORE

A look at Lincoln as politician

JAN 12 ― I’m a true blue Malaysian, but there’s something about the American institution that is Abraham Lincoln that never fails to warm my... READ MORE

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Malaysian cinema in 2012

JAN 5 — I’m a positive guy. So when it was announced last year that more than 70 Malaysian films will be shown in local cinemas through the Skim... READ MORE

My favourite Blu-ray and DVD releases of 2012

DEC 29 ― This has been a crazy year for new Blu-ray and DVD releases, so crazy that even an addict like me found it hard to keep up with it... READ MORE

My 10 favourite films of 2012

DEC 22 — Last week I wrote about my five favourite albums of 2012, and if you’ve been regularly following my column I’m sure you’d know that more... READ MORE

My five favourite albums of 2012

DEC 15 — I didn’t even realise the year was coming to an end, and that we’re now at that time of the year again where every music geek will be busy... READ MORE

Barfi’s new Bollywood magic

DEC 8 — I think it was only a few weeks ago that I wrote about fresh new voices finally getting recognition from the Indian cinema mainstream,... READ MORE

Lonesome, but not forgotten

DEC 1 — It’s a great time to be alive if you’re movie crazy like me. Just like how VHS and DVD brought a whole host of previously out of... READ MORE

Admiring Ben Affleck

NOV 24 — It’s an automatic response from people who like to think they are individualistic, unique: dislike someone just because he/she is famous.... READ MORE

New gangs of India

NOV 17 — Indian films have a pretty bad name among the more “discerning” film fans in Malaysia. Strike that, in fact Indian films have a pretty bad... READ MORE

3D comes alive!

NOV 10 — The 3D debate, about whether it’s more than just a gimmick, has been going on for a few years now, ever since the second wave of 3D... READ MORE

Reason for some (quiet) optimism for Spurs?

NOV 3 — If you’ve been regularly reading my weekly column, then I’m sure you’ve noticed that apart from being a movie and music geek, I also can’t... READ MORE

Damsels will ease your distress

OCT 27 — Thirteen years is a long time to come up with a new film, especially when your first three films were quite highly regarded at the time... READ MORE

Obey

OCT 20 ― As Hannibal Smith famously, repeatedly and so succinctly puts it in “The A-Team”: “I love it when a plan comes together.” Applying that... READ MORE

So what movie do you want to watch next?

OCT 6 — I’ve been spending quite a lot of time in Singapore the past month or so. Being the film geek that I am, of course I used this opportunity... READ MORE

Great adaptations

SEPT 29 — Even though the Malaysian film industry is probably only 20 to 30 years younger than that of Hollywood (we missed out on making silent... READ MORE

Early days yet

SEPT 22 — We’re now four games into the English Premier League (EPL) season and as expected things are looking very unpredictable. Manchester City... READ MORE

Here comes the sun

SEPT 15 — There will always be loads of great bands that end up unjustly overlooked in this world. Sometimes it’s plain bad luck and mismanagement,... READ MORE

Finally, more signs of life in Malaysian cinema this year

SEPT 8 — As much as I love films and writing about them, especially Malaysian films, this year has been a particularly painful one in the search of... READ MORE

The Beach Boys magic

SEPT 1 ― There’s something special about the letter “B” when it comes to band names in pop and rock ‘n’ roll. For normal pop and rock ‘n’ roll... READ MORE

Welcome back football!

AUG 18 — It’s almost a summer of football overdose this year, with the European Championships following the normal European leagues and then... READ MORE

My favourite films from each decade

AUG 11 ― Because I’m a geek, I’ve always loved making lists, or reading them. Last week I wrote about Sight & Sound magazine’s 10 Greatest Films... READ MORE

The 10 greatest films of all time

AUG 4 — Every 10 years, from 1952 onwards, cinephiles across the world eagerly await the results of the British Film Institute’s (BFI) magazine... READ MORE

Hujan & Bunkface: Back and rocking harder

JULY 28 ― It’s been a quiet year in terms of new Malaysian albums, especially from bands in the indie scene. The indie scene itself has been... READ MORE

EPL summer round-up

JULY 21 — It’s only about one more month till the new English Premier League (EPL) season starts, and with the kind of changes at most of the clubs... READ MORE

Confessions of a Maroon 5 fan

JULY 14 ― I’m sure not many will believe me when I say that I love Maroon 5. Not in an ironic way, but like a true blue fan would. I have to... READ MORE

Welcome to Tottenham, Mr AVB

JULY 7 — And so it’s confirmed. After a few long weeks of sweating, wondering who will take over as manager at my beloved Tottenham Hotspur when... READ MORE

What is Malay-ness?

JUNE 30 — A few weeks back, my writing adventures brought me to Kelantan and Terengganu in order to check out some traditional Malay dances so that... READ MORE

A tradition of protest songs

JUNE 23 — Siapa yang berani bernyanyi (Whoever dares to sing)                 Nanti akan dikebiri (Shall later be neutered)                 Siapa... READ MORE

So long Harry, and thanks for the memories

JUNE 16 — I wanted to write about something else this week, but this morning’s news is just too important for a Spurs fan like me not to comment... READ MORE

Making my first short film

JUNE 9 — Having been a film geek ever since I got out of high school (meaning it was then I truly started hunting down and “devouring” films for... READ MORE

Reclaiming pop punk and emo?

JUNE 2 — Nowadays pop punk and emo are such dirty words that many self-respecting music fans will never actually admit to loving them. Just like... READ MORE

Making world class movies

MAY 26 — We’ve always talked of wanting to make world-class films, and spend millions of ringgit trying to get there. As far as I can remember,... READ MORE

One to remember

MAY 19 — Unless you’re a Manchester United fan or of one of the three teams relegated from the English Premier League (EPL), last Sunday was truly... READ MORE

Chow Kit’s got soul

MAY 12 — As a film enthusiast, there’s nothing I’d love more than to be able to recommend a Malaysian film to friends and strangers. Unfortunately... READ MORE

Drama, drama, drama!

MAY 5 — Wow, more twists to the tale! What an English Premier League (EPL) season this is turning out to be. Just two weeks ago the title seemed... READ MORE

Scale and spectacle

APRIL 28 — It’s now the end of April and we’re entering May in just a few days, which means that the 2012 summer blockbuster season is well and... READ MORE

The heart wants what the heart wants

APRIL 21 — In 2010 I walked into the cinema to see a Hong Kong film called “Love In A Puff”, not knowing much about it except that it was directed... READ MORE

Malaysian cinema in 2012: First quarter report

APRIL 14 — I had really high hopes for Malaysian cinema this year, especially after last year’s unexpected box-office glory and the general... READ MORE

EPL season looking to get more interesting

APRIL 7 — How quick things change in football. Just last week I wrote about almost giving up hope of seeing my beloved Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs)... READ MORE

That time of the year for Spurs fans

MARCH 31 — It’s that time of the year again for Spurs fans. The past few weeks have been difficult for us, especially the sequence of games when we... READ MORE

The rise of a little band called Fun

MARCH 24 —  If I get RM10 every time someone tells me that the bands I like are “weird”, I’ll probably be able to buy a nicely expensive guitar by... READ MORE

‘Bunohan’ — talk of the town

MARCH 17 — A few months back I wrote about the trailblazing international achievements of the local film “Bunohan”, which had travelled to the... READ MORE

Of cults and breakthroughs

MARCH 10 — Proper gigs are few and far between these days. The lack of easily accessible and affordable venues in the centre of Kuala Lumpur... READ MORE

Morality and the arts

FEB 25 — I notched up another first last weekend when I was invited to be a panellist on a monthly dialogue series called “Dialog Orang Muda”... READ MORE

My first music festival experience – Laneway 2012

FEB 18 — Despite having the privilege of studying in the United Kingdom for three years when I was pursuing my degree, I’d never managed to attend... READ MORE

The strange case of Spurs and Harry Redknapp

FEB 11 — The January transfer window has slammed shut and it’s been a really quiet one for English Premier League (EPL) clubs this year, especially... READ MORE

Oscar season — Part 2

FEB 4 — Last week I wrote about my reactions and predictions to the just announced Oscar 2012 nominations for the major categories of Best Picture,... READ MORE

Oscar season

JAN 28 — The Oscar 2012 season has officially begun as the nominees were announced on Tuesday this week. While the frontrunners as announced were... READ MORE

My five favourite albums of 2011

JAN 21 — Even though I’m a musician and singer-songwriter in a band, anyone who’s ever hung out with me for a bit will tell you that I talk about... READ MORE

Time for Spurs to get silly?

JAN 14 — As I’m writing this, I’ve just finished watching the Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) vs Everton game which was aired “live” on TV, which Spurs... READ MORE

My favourite DVD and Bluray releases of 2011

JAN 7 — Another year has come and gone and 2011 has been quite a generous one for home video collectors, so much so that if I were to list every... READ MORE

My favourite films of 2011

DEC 31 — It’s the end of the year, which means that the time has come to make lists again! As usual, you won’t find me compiling a best-of list... READ MORE

Malaysian independent music in 2011

DEC 24 — This is supposedly the year where the album died here in Malaysia. So few of them are being made that the folks at the country’s top music... READ MORE

A year of Malaysian cinema

DEC 17 — By the end of this month, a total of 42 Malay films would have been shown in local cinemas this year. With the exception of two films that... READ MORE

Weird time to be a Spurs fan

DEC 10 — It’s quite scary being a Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) fan right now. I know, we’re supposed to be having the time of our lives since we’re... READ MORE

What a debacle!

DEC 3 — Malaysia’s top awards shows for film and music both happened in the last two weeks and, like weddings, there’s bound to be some sort of... READ MORE

Hurray for Harimau Muda!

NOV 26 — It was a sweet, sweet Monday night for all Malaysians as our football team managed to defend our gold medal at this year’s edition of the... READ MORE

Hollywood thrills

NOV 19 — We’re almost at the end of November already, and as a film geek and wannabe film critic, I’ve already started thinking about films that... READ MORE

Seks bebas and personal sins

NOV 12 — Malaysia’s favourite phrase, “seks bebas” (which means “free sex” if you don’t happen to speak Malay), is back with a vengeance judging by... READ MORE

Not just another 48 Hours

NOV 5 — The indie film-making scene in Malaysia was buzzing with excitement last weekend as it was time for another instalment of the Kuala Lumpur... READ MORE

A change in the balance of power in Manchester?

OCT 29 — What a weekend that was. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard the hugely shocking news that Manchester United... READ MORE

The underdogs of the Toon Army

OCT 22 — Earlier on in the current English Premier League (EPL) season I sort of decided that Manchester United will be my second team for this... READ MORE

Understanding ‘The Tree Of Life’

OCT 15 — I think it is possibly safe to say that the release of “The Tree Of Life”, only the fifth feature film in 38 years from the reclusive... READ MORE

We need to talk about Jason

OCT 8 — Since I’m now in the planning stages of my band’s next album, it is quite customary for me to start pillaging through my CD collection in... READ MORE

Latest witch-hunt in town

OCT 1 — Every few years or so, there will be a new and highly sensationalised witch-hunt in the mainstream media directed at Malaysia Boleh’s ever... READ MORE

The times, they are a-changing

SEPT 24 — On the eve of Malaysia Day last week, I’m sure there were millions of Malaysians who were pleasantly surprised by our beloved prime... READ MORE

Three cheers for ‘Bunohan’

SEPT 17 — Regular readers of my humble weekly musings should probably already know that as a film lover there’s nothing I want more than to see a... READ MORE

Scary Spurs

SEPT 10 — Raya this year has been an exceptionally exciting one for me. In addition to it being a Merdeka Raya, it also coincided with one of the... READ MORE

Selamat Merdeka Raya

SEPT 3 — It’s Raya time and this year’s a wee bit more special as Aidilfitri also coincides with the 54th anniversary of our beloved country’s... READ MORE

Putting together an album

AUG 27 — Writing songs is a mostly solitary and lonely business when you’re the sole songwriter for your band like me. Writing songs with a view to... READ MORE

Time to start taking Man City more seriously?

AUG 20 — The English Premier League (EPL) season started last weekend with sort of a disappointing whimper for me, as my favourite team Tottenham... READ MORE

Help! I’ve become a United fan!

AUG 13 — After more than two months of suffering from withdrawal symptoms due to the lack of English Premier League (EPL) football, it’s... READ MORE

Keep it fun!

AUG 6 — I turned 34 about two weeks back. It’s okay, it doesn’t sound that scary or old to me, or so I tell myself. Every birthday, I look around... READ MORE

The wait is almost over

JULY 30 — With no World Cup or European Championship this year, it’s been a pretty boring summer when it comes to football, and I say this without... READ MORE

Noises from the fringe

JULY 23 — When we entered 2011, the local independent music scene seemed to be quite uncertain. There weren’t that many local albums produced in... READ MORE

Hendak seribu daya

JULY 9 — Normally I don’t talk much about politics, even with my close friends. Not that we’re apolitical or anything like that, but I think most... READ MORE

More than meets the eye

JULY 2 — One of the great pleasures of being a movie addict is what I call the thrill of the hunt, of catching that latest hot ticket as early as... READ MORE

The RM11 million man

JUNE 25 — I’m not sure if any of you readers out there have been paying attention, but last week a very notable milestone was achieved by a... READ MORE

Changing the world in our own little way

JUNE 18 — I’ve never been a voracious reader, though I think I do read quite a bit compared to the average Malaysian. What I do read though is... READ MORE