Wregas Bhanuteja’s second feature film is a colourful character study and an often frightening examination of the negative impact social media and cancel culture can have on people’s lives.
Prani (Sha Ine Febriyanti) is a middle-aged schoolteacher known for her unwavering ethics, and her creative punishments — called “reflections” — earn her admiration from her colleagues and respect from her pupils. When she sees someone cutting in line at a popular coconut-cake stand, she fearlessly speaks out against the injustice. Her deed takes an unexpected turn, however, when a vlogger posts a video of her, which goes viral, gets misinterpreted, and unleashes a wave of online criticism. Prani's reputation and chances of securing the vice principal position she aspires to are suddenly at risk, and though her family tries to help her prove her innocence, the situation soon spirals out of control.
In his second feature film, following his debut, Photocopier, director Wregas Bhanuteja once again presents a character study of someone who’s wrongfully accused. The truth may seem evident, but is taking a stand really the wisest and best course of action? Everyone in Prani’s world — and perhaps our own — is fast to jump to conclusions based on the very little information available at our swiping fingertips.
Bhanuteja’s comment on social media and cancel culture blurs the line between personal matters and public entitlements. With its unique, punchy colour palette and droll music, Andragogy reminds us that surprises and disharmony are all around us.
Official Selection, 2023 Toronto International Film Festival
Content advisory: bullying, mature themes