RAW is WAR! – Ramly At War Begins

ramly_poster_small-1It was a innocuous, innocent and not-so-interesting night some time ago on Facebook. I find myself getting into it a lot more, enjoying the reactions and interactions, as it were, with my family (even my dad is on Facebook…which is nice :)). Anyways, it seems as if other people’s moms and dads were also on, given the uninteresting nature of the night. I would define it as interesting if it were updated frequently, and if the statuses themselves were rather interesting to read. Funny, this: not a long time ago I hated Facebook. I hated how it seems to transplant all other modes of communications. Now, however, having tried it extensively, I realise I could make it work for me without going the way of others.

Another reason why I should thank Facebook, though, is ‘RAW’. “What on Earth is ‘RAW’?” I thought to myself as it constantly and almost-annoyingly popped up on Juliane Block’s status update. She had added me on Facebook after we had interviewed her and did a review for her film, ‘Emperor’, but communication has been at a minimum. I suppose we all have friends like that. For that past few days, though, almost everything was about ‘RAW’, and if her idea was to get my (and other people’s) attention…well, it worked.

Perhaps she just had herself a Ramly Ayam Double Special...
Perhaps she just had herself a Ramly Ayam Double Special...

“Is ‘RAW’ short for something?” I fired off a message to her. Being the wrestling fan that I am/was/in-the-process-of-transitioning-between-am-and-was, I find myself thinking back to the WWE programme, ‘Monday Night RAW’. “Yes! ‘Ramly At War’,” was the reply.

And now I’m thinking burgers.

Ramly Burgers, in Malaysia, are the premiere brand of burgers being made and sold by the roadside in Malaysia. You can find them almost everywhere; in a way, it is a kind of McDonald’s without the incessant promotion, but with a similar presence. It’s cheap, available even into the early hours of the morning, and far more importantly…absolutely delicious.

And so it is to these burgers that I find myself jumping to (and now, with Ramadhan in full swing, missing greatly). “’Ramly At War’,” I mused. Two warring stalls fighting it out over territorial supremacy? People food-fighting with Ramly burgers? Or is it the whole Ramly burger company pulling itself together for an all-out war against the new kid on the block, Otai?

"That was fine, but I need you to kick more ass."
"That was fine, but I need you to kick more ass."

Whatever it was, my interest was jacked. Jacked as in ‘Snakes on A Plane’ jacked. Or like ‘Chaw’, a recent Korean film about a killer pig/boar (though criminally, I didn’t manage to see it). Somehow, the title has that quality on me, and I told her so.

What I should have asked her is what the story is. It’s an action short film made by Jblockbuster and Low Angle Productions, but even after all the pictures, trailers and action teasers, I still am not entirely sure what it’s all about. Low Angle Productions even have a post on their blog entitled ‘What is Ramly At War?’, but again, little is revealed. In short (and I do mean short), the blurb on Youtube gives the best one-line synopsis: Quan, a loyal gang member has to choose between completing his mission and breaking the rules to save his brother’s ass. The trailer does not reveal all that much with regards to the storyline. What it will reveal, though, is the slickness:

It seems that the crew has prepared long and hard for the action sequences, and they have paid off rather well (check out the move around the 1:00 mark. Looks like something out of a video game :)). In fact, they look a lot more realistic than many of the Malaysian films who aspired to employ similar martial arts moves up on the screen (having said that, I have not seen ‘Kinta 1881’). Not that it should be that surprising. Low Angle Productions have martial arts oozing through their veins. “We hope to aspire more martial artists to expand their skills and creativity into action screen fighting.” On that part, they seem to have taken a big step forwards. Thus, it doesn’t really matter if the story is unclear at this stage. It is, after, a means to an end. “We wanna use it for the festival circuit,” wrote Juliane, “and to find funding for a feature.”

Which is probably where the most important action of the film will be: I was disappointed with the lack of burger eating scenes in the trailer. “The burger eating scene is reserved for the movie :D” wrote Juliane.

Don’t let me down, guys. 🙂 Good luck.

‘Ramly At War Begins’ is an upcoming short film from JBlockbuster and Low Angle Productions. It will be premiered at KLPac Indiecine on Thursday 17th September 2009. Tickets are available for free, but to be served first, you must come first. There are many pictures online, with this Facebook album appearing to be the most comprehensive.

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