Home » Agak Laen, Simple Comedy Bits that Touch

Agak Laen, Simple Comedy Bits that Touch

It was such a fresh relieve when watching Agak Laen (2024) in the cinema. In the last few years, horror films have been seizing the screen of our local cinema especially after the hype of KKN di Desa Penari (2022) and it seems that the trend won’t be laying down anytime soon. Agak Laen offers a simple comedy story that is infused with horror and drama elements. Drama and horror at gimmicks but comedy at heart.

Agak Laen tells a story of 4 friends who work as staff at haunted house attraction (Rumah Hantu) at the night market. They are Jegel (Indra Jegel), Bene (Bene Dion), Oki (Oki Rengga), and Boris (Boris Bokir), these four friends try to maintain their dying attraction in order to pursue their dreams and change their fate.

Too bad for them, but fate turned into another way… and fate keeps turning around as the story is going on. One day, a local politician who cheated on his wife and had a date at the night market, entered the haunted house. During the walk inside, the politician was shocked by the appearance of the ghosts and had a heart attack.

It is where the story will develop further. The story of how the four friends developing their attraction by using all means while they have to hide the fact that a politician died inside their attraction.

Agak Laen is able to attract attention through its simple storyline, unique humour and conversation. The main storyline revolves around the haunted house attraction that is getting better and receive more visitors. Also, the search of the local politician who died inside the haunted house while the corpse remained unfound by his family. It is pretty awesome that many gimmicks and several sub-plots are able to make that simple storyline more interesting and still look coherent with each other.  

We can look at the ghost gimmick that in another way “bless” the haunted house. Everyday before the attraction is opened and received visitors, Jegel would pee in the grave of the politician inside the haunted house. His action is aimed to make the ghost of the dead politician angry and would help them to scare visitors. That’s an epic gimmick you got there!

Agak Laen. Courtesy of Agak Laen Official

Each character has their own sub-plot that makes this film more dynamic, especially in inserting the drama elements. Boris is aiming to be a soldier while deceiving his mother, Jegel wants to pay off his debts, Oki wants to cure his ill mother, and Bene wants to save money for marriage.

Each sub-plot of the characters successfully enriches this film. They uplifted the comedy to the next level and made everything funnier. It shows that the storyline is well-written. It’s kinda rare to see a film that is written, played, or directed by standup comedian to be this neat. Years ago, we saw films like Comic 8 and several other comedy films mainly played by stand-up comedians, and what was the result? Doom! The films are a mess and totally failed to impress. But not with Agak Laen.

Let’s see the comedy writing in this film. The comedy in this film is very typical of stand-up comedy. It is using short bits to strike the series of comedy. Whether it is through action or conversations, almost in every scene you would see some short comedy built-up before the punchline strikes in.

For example, the peeing, the conversation to search for shaman that turn into a dark joke between Christian and Muslim, Boris’ video call with his mother, Jegel’s asking forgiveness from Oki, calling ‘beb’ among fellow men, until Dion’s meeting with his girlfriend at the end of the film. Every comedy bit has its own place in the storyline that is suitable with the surrounding situation.

Agak Laen. Courtesy of Agak Laen Official

Every comedy is built-up quickly to insert as many jokes as possible just like a standup comedy show. But what makes this film good and enjoyable is, all those comedies work well together with the main storyline, and it is resulting in the touching moments at the end of the film is not scraped. The comedy is not destroying the storyline or even drifting the storyline further into a weird direction. Unlike many standup-comedians-led-films that equal to trash, the comedy in this film is very well-made.

Despite all those good traits, there are few disappointing parts in this film. First thing first is the acting. The four friends, Jegel, Bene, Boris, and Oki are not that impressive in their acting performances. At some scenes they are looking stiff especially Bene and Boris. Jegel is too ordinary in terms of his character development, and Oki who takes most of the main storyline is lacking in emotion.

Outside their comedic sketch, they are not shining. In the end, it is still a film, the acting department should be the spearhead of all the elements. But these four friends look promising to be the rising stars for comedy films, that certain specific talent that has long gone from Indonesia’s film industry. The Comedy Actors.

The second disappointment comes from the opening scene. The opening scene is really really bad. The scene when Ge (Ge Pamungkas) is playing a ball game with Oki and he keeps Oki fall down into the water. Seriously, that scene has dumb jokes, the dialogue is too artificial, and Ge’s acting is sub-par. After that scene, everything is getting better. Another letdown is the product placement, it is too artificial and out of place.

Last but not least, Agak Laen is a very enjoyable film. It is funny from the (few minutes after) the start until the very end. Despite the overflowing comedy bits across the film, the story development is not drifting away from the main storyline. The jokes are smooth, and the drama is quite touching.

Our Score (7/10)

Title: Agak Laen
Production: Imajinari, A&Z Films, Legacy Pictures
Director: Muhadkly Acho
Screenwriter: Muhadkly Acho
Casts: Boris Bokir, Oki Rengga, Indra Jegel, Bene Dion, Tissa Biani, Indah Permatasari, Arie Kriting

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1 month ago

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1 month ago

watching Agak Laen gives me hope that Indonesia comedy movies do have great future. Great Job for indonesia Movie Viewers, and also Box office maker.

Last edited 1 month ago by Pd178
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