Prolific writer, director, and actor Joko Anwar has emerged as one of Indonesian genre cinema’s most significant and influential directors in recent years, helped along by the critical and financial triumphs of films like as Satan’s Slaves, Gundala, and Impetigore. 

In addition to producing a number of impressive works of his own authorship across a variety of genres, Joko has garnered positive comparisons to Guillermo del Toro and Jordan Peele.

 He has also fostered a thriving domestic industry through his partnerships with other filmmakers, such as Mouly Surya and the Mo Brothers.

Perhaps the most notable illustration to date of Joko’s commitment to elevating Indonesian cinema to a higher level and providing a platform for the upcoming generation of filmmakers is his most recent endeavour.

What emerges is far more than the sum of its parts, fusing science fiction and horror themes with more realistic tales about his nation’s troubled past and persistent economic inequalities.

It seems at first glance to be a fairly simple anthology series along the lines of Black Mirror or The Outer Limits. Similar content was provided to Netflix viewers by Del Toro himself in 2022 with his horror-themed Cabinet of Curiosities, and Peele led the revival of The Twilight Zone. 

Upon deeper examination, Joko is aiming for a far bigger form of world-building that is more akin to M. Night Shyamalan’s Unbreakable trilogy or possibly even the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He has more planned than just a straightforward collection of spooky stories.

Every Nightmares and Daydreams episode seems to exist in a narrative vacuum all by itself. Although they all have Jakarta as their hub, they all unfold in distinct temporal eras and concentrate on new personalities.

In the first and longest episode, “Old House,” a taxi driver named Ario Bayu unwillingly sends his ageing mother, Yati Surachman, to one of the nation’s upscale nursing homes in 2015, but he later grows doubts about the facility’s real goals.

 The episode, which was written and directed by Joko himself, opens the show in full-on horror mode, drawing comparisons to films like The Shining and Get Out as it develops to a delightfully macabre climax.

In the second episode, “The Orphan,” which takes place in the present, a destitute couple (played by Yoga Pratama and Nirina Zubir) learn of a little orphan named Faqih Alaydrus who has the ability to bestow wealth on whoever adopts him as they live and work on a sizable landfill site.

In one of the most interesting episodes, “Poems and Pain,” renowned poet Rania (Marissa Anita) learns she has the ability to physically enter the body of her own main character. She unconsciously transcribes pages and pages of gripping fiction during these crises, so it may be a fortunate talent. However, her protagonist is imprisoned by an abusive and violent husband.

These seemingly unconnected events gradually start to line together as the series progresses. Joko’s characters are connected not just by their shared experiences as individuals and as residents of a nation that is still experiencing unstable political and economic turmoil, but also by subtle nuances that gradually come to light.

 It would take away from the series’ payoff to go into the intricacies of how Joko, fellow filmmakers Tommy Dewo, Randolph Zaini, and Ray Pakpahan spin their webs.

From the most obscure Indonesian productions of the past to the most well-known box office franchises of the present, Joko’s impact can be seen in every frame. 

Through space and time, across alternating plains of reality, aliens and demons battle with freedom fighters and superpowered entities, while parents fight to provide for their children, spouses struggle to stay together, and everyone tries to protect their own small piece of the world.

When viewed episode by episode and piecemeal, Nightmares and Daydreams appears to be a modest, varied, and sometimes even erroneous collection of stories, each having a fun fantasy element.

When the play reaches its ambitious finale with the bold declaration that his audience actually ain’t seen nothing yet, however, the full impact of Joko’s huge tapestry of convergent ideas and influences finally erupts into clear sight. 

On June 14, Joko Anwar’s Nightmares and Daydreams will be available for streaming on Netflix.

Here are the detailed review updates on, Joko Anwar’s Nightmares and Daydreams. Follow Premiere next website for more details. 

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