The principle material outputs of the Suara training include the completion of SUARA FILMS. Films are shot on location in the participants’ communities, and represent the culmination of efforts undertaken throughout the year-long Suara training. This constitutes a great stride forward for the Suara programme, and the growing skills, dedication and maturity of community filmmakers are truly evident in their final products.

Completed Suara films are brought to a public audience on the big screen during the festival. Each filmmaking teams responsible for producing a completed film is given the opportunity to introduce their film to the BEFF audience. Screenings prove to be a highly satisfying conclusion to Suara’s efforts for participants, trainers and organisers alike.

Suara Film List

  • 2017

    SUARA FILMS in 2017

    The Suara films received a thoroughly positive reception from the audience of around 100 strong, and the screenings proved to be a highly satisfying conclusion to Suara͛s efforts in 2017 for participants, trainers and organisers alike.

    Kisah si Pemungut Sampah by Beginners (Group 1)
    (Malaysia, 2017, 1 min 29secs)
    Workshop film. Follows a woman who works for the Kota Kinabalu City Council (DBKK) during her 3am shift.

    Koko Nut by Beginners (Group 2)
    (Malaysia, 2017, 1 min 43secs)
    Workshop film. Interview with the proprietor of restaurant specialising in coconut-based food and drinks in Kota Kinabalu͛s Gaya street

    Luahan si Penjaga Tandas by Beginners (Group 3)
    (Malaysia, 2017, 2 mins 49 secs)
    Workshop film. Challenges for workers tasked with maintaining Kota Kinabalu’s public facilities.

    The Future of the City Driver by Beginners (Group 4)
    (Malaysia, 2017, 1 min 30secs)
    Workshop film. Looks at the decline in the cityy’s taxi industry.

    Cocos Corner by Intermediate (Group 1)
    (Malaysia, 2017, 1 min 57secs)
    Workshop film. The sights and sounds of KK’s street food stalls at the night market.

    Masjid Usia Kota Kinabalu by Intermediate (Group 2)
    (Malaysia, 2017, 3 mins 30secs)
    Workshop film. Explores the history of one of Kota Kinabalu’s oldest mosques, and documents this year͛s Awal Muharram celebration.

    Culture Cribs by Intermediate (Group 3)
    (Malaysia, 2017, 6 mins 07secs)
    Workshop film. Examining modern artistry and self-expression, this film interviews the artists and patrons of one of the city’s tattoo parlours.

    Bokok Kami Maitu by WAPO
    (Malaysia, 2017, 8 mins 16secs)
    Community film. Depicts the day-to-day conservation efforts of WAPO’s Honorary Wildlife Wardens as struggle to save Omadal island͛s threatened sea turtle populations.

    WAGS Project by Wild Asia
    (Malaysia, 2017, 4 mins 10secs)
    Community film. A showcase of Wild Asia’s project to help Sabah’s oil palm smallholders engage in sustainable agricultural practices and gain certification under the RSPO scheme.

    Raidian by Green Semporna
    (Malaysia, 2017, 4 mins 19secs)
    Community film. Raidian is possibly the last remaining exponent of the art of making parang (machetes) with the traditional carvings of the Bajau Laut people. This film explores his motivations and efforts to pass his knowledge to Semporna’s youth.

    Dengar by KOPEL
    (Malaysia, 2017, 5 mins 28secs)
    Community film. A character study of Noorsalleh; a deaf-mute member of KOPEL’s staff in Batu Puteh. The film gives inspirational and thought-provoking insights into how Noorsalleh overcomes his impairments to communicate with the wider world, becoming one of the most valuable members of the KOPEL team.

    Ayam Belungis by Pulau Sebatik
    (Malaysia, 2017, 7 mins 16secs)
    Community film. Focuses on Puan Pancaran of Sebatik island, a recently widowed woman who struggles to support her family through the production of traditional woven handicrafts. A heartwarming tale which demonstrates Puan Pancaran’s capacity to remain positive despite facing difficult circumstances.

    Hero si Karang by Reef Check
    (Malaysia, 2017, 5 mins 17secs)
    Community film. Showing how greater environmental awareness can transform unsustainable practices to enhanced conservation, this film follows a former fish bomber from Mantanani island who now dedicates himself to the protection of coral reefs through his work with Reef Check.

    Pantang Larang by Kg. Dagat
    (Malaysia, 2017, 6 mins 19secs)
    Community film. Examines the fascinating environmental forms of pantang larang (taboos) held by the Tidong people of Kg. Dagat. A beautifully shot and revealing insight into how long-standing indigenous practices can contribute towards environmental conservation and management in the modern day.

  • 2016

    SUARA FILMS in 2016

    In 2016, Suara participants managed to complete seven short films were selected to be premiered at the BEFF festival weekends screenings on the 9th of October. The filmmaking teams who responsible for each of the selected films had the opportunity of introducing their film and speak with audience members about the issues behind their stories.

    Community Abai Project by KOPEL (Intermediate Group)
    (Malaysia, 2016, 5 mins 30secs)
    Examines a community-based ecotourism initiative in Kg. Abai, incorporating the perspectives of both community members themselves and visiting tourists.

    Ensera by Suara Workshop participants (Intermediate Group)
    (Malaysia, 2016, 3 mins 30secs)
    Character study of Eleanor Goroh – anindigenous woman trying to revive traditional artisanship by making jewelry from naturally sourced materials.

    Harapan di Pinggir Muara by KOPEL (Intermediate Group)
    (Malaysia, 2016, 6 mins 30 secs)
    This film highlights the dangers of irresponsible aid-based community development projects – using the case study of Kg Dagat where a failed ecotourism scheme has led to the relocation and sense of helplessness amongst the villagers.

    Perjalanan dan Harapan by Suara Workshop participants (Beginner Group)
    (Malaysia, 2016, 3 mins)
    This film uncovers the nascent discord between licensed taxi drivers and those working for app-based ride sharing providers such as Uber, interviewing parties from both sides.

    Pesan Ibu by Suara Workshop participants (Beginner Group)
    (Malaysia, 2016, 2 mins)
    A look at healthcare for the elderly, following a woman as she travels daily to a hospital in Kota Kinabalu to care for her husband.

    Tradisi Kraftangan Kampung Lutut by Kinabalu EcoLinc (Intermediate Group)
    (Malaysia, 2016, 6 mins 30 secs)
    Follows a womens͛ collaborative in Kg. Lutut, Ranau, who actively protect their forest to manage its wild plants as resources for their handicraft enterprise.

    Warisan dan Masyarakat by Suara Workshop participants (Beginner Group)
    (Malaysia, 2016, 4 mins)
    The community filmmaking team interview ordinary residents of Kota Kinabalu, exploring what makes the city unique and asking whether modern day inhabitants have lost touch with its history.

  • 2015

    SUARA FILMS in 2015

    In 2015, Suara participants managed to complete six short films that were premiered to BEFF audiences. Four of these films were shot on location in the participants’ communities, and represented the culmination of efforts undertaken during the entirety of 2015.

    Seniku Jiwaku by Suara Intensive Workshop participants
    (Malaysia, 2015, 4 mins)

    Kebakaran di Kg. Bangau by Suara Production Workshop participants
    (Malaysia, 2015, 5 mins)

    Lokos  by KOPEL
    (Malaysia, 2015, 3 mins 27 secs)

    Mastal Arikik  by Wanita Pulau Omadal (WAPO)
    (Malaysia, 2015, 2 mins)

    Turipas by Hutan
    (Malaysia, 2015, 8 mins)

    Kisah Budak Jalanan by Green Semporna
    (Malaysia, 2015, 7 mins)

    Two of the films, “Seniku Jiwaku” and “Kebakaran di Kampung Bangau” were produced over the course of a single workshop, while the other four films – “Lokos”, “Mastal Arikik”, “Turipas” and “Kisah Budak Jalanan” – were a result of community filmmaking teams’ continued efforts over the course of the year.

  • 2014

    Two Suara Films, “Manik Rungus” and “Tradisi yang Diwarisi”, were premiered to a public audience during Sabah Forestry Department’s high-profile Centennial Celebrations at Kota Kinabalu’s Town Padang in November 2014.


    Entitled “Rungus Beads”, this film was made by a team of seven community filmmakers who wanted to tell a story about the traditional beadwork of the indigenous Rungus ethnic group in north Sabah. The films examines the cultural roots of Rungus beadwork and looks at the prominence of Rungus beads as cultural artefacts and expressions, having come far from its humble origins in remote villages to the markets and shops of Kota Kinabalu City.


    Entitled “Inherited Traditions”, this is a story of a young man from a remote village who is finding his way in the city by running a market stall he inherited from his mother. Made by a team of five community filmmakers, the film explores how his way of life has changed and his aspirations for the future.


    A team of six community filmmakers made this film as a window into the day in the life of a zookeeper who works tending birds and other animals in a zoo. The film depicts the ordinary day-to-day tasks and the years of service this zookeeper has dedicated to caring for the animals – a task that is often taken for granted by the many visitors who come to the zoo – and begins to ask the bigger question about our responsibility as custodians of nature.


    This dramatic film was made by a team of five community filmmakers who investigated the social and environmental impacts arising from development projects that are faced by the local communities in the village of Notoruss, Penampang. Having unsuccessfully protested against the building of the Babagon Dam on the Moyog River, the community now faces another threat in the re-opening of a dormant rock quarry in the upper catchment of the Moyog River. The film investigates local people’s objections to the quarry and how they remain fearful of the severe flash floods that may ensue if the quarry proceeds.


    A team of five community filmmakers decided to shoot this film with no interviews and used only footage of orangutans to convey the character of this gentle animal. Combined with footage pre-shot in the Kinabatangan, this film contrasts the life an orangutan leads in the wild with the life of captivity in a zoo. It asks difficult questions about the fate of wildlife species when large-scale land use changes are removing Sabah’s remaining natural habitats.


    The six community filmmakers in this team chose the title “Bastion of Life” to encapsulate the story of a single mother who runs a food stall at the seafront markets in Kota Kinabalu City. Told through her prosaic voice, she describes a way of life that begins as the night unfolds and is sustained by the comings and goings of the many people who patronise these markets.


    Entitled ͞Traditional Medicine͟, this film is a short account of the importance of traditional medicines in today͛s world and was made by a team of six community filmmakers.

  • 2013

    The BEFF audience was then treated to an exclusive premiere of four SUARA Komuniti films compiled over only the previous few days by community participants during the festival week.

    Bobohizan Sukod Vagu
    Film by Community Filmmakers from the Intermediate-Advanced Workshop
    featured the journey of a young Bobohizan at Monsopiad Cultural Village and his lifelong commitment towards Dusun heritage and culture.

    Sabah Art Gallery
    by Community Filmmakers from the Intermediate-Advanced Workshop
    Explored the ethos behind the new eco-friendly architecture of the Sabah Art Gallery.

    Pantai Kita
    Film by Community Filmmakers from the Intermediate-Advanced Workshop
    Threw a spotlight on the hot topic of the proposed development of Tanjung Aru beach and included vintage photographs and interviews to illustrate the multiple uses and values of the beach among local residents.

    Film by Community Filmmakers from the Intermediate-Advanced Workshop
    Peered into the life of hawkers in the ͚bridge market͛ in downtown Kota Kinabalu.

    The Sunken Graves
    Film by Mohd. Nizam Andan & Didi Nelson Raymond

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