Indonesian filmmakers explore the true potential of ARRI’s large-format combo

Indonesia’s rising cinematographer, Vera Lestafa, and the first TRINITY operator in the country, Hanafi “Aan” Malik, join forces to shoot romance drama film “Under the Age” while equipped with the ultimate combination of ALEXA LF, Signature Primes, and TRINITY.

Mar. 16, 2021

“Under the Age” (original title: “Di Bawah Umur”) is a coming-of-age film about teens exploring their youth, making mistakes, and challenging norms. “My visual concept was to make the film more fluid and dynamic, similar to the way the characters are examining their adolescence. I wanted to add a certain beauty to their reckless youth,” DP Lestafa explained.

“The director and I needed a camera that could provide the most possibilities, so we decided to go with ALEXA LF. I wanted to see how much I could push the limit of low light and color range. The results were amazing,” said Lestafa. “The Signature Primes’ large aperture gave me space to play with the light and the shadow while still capturing soft images and without losing contrast. I especially loved the perspective and depth of the 47 mm lens. The large-format combo was a beast.”

“ARRI cameras are easy to use and are reliable tools that can produce the most incredible images. They have never failed me,” Vera Lestafa, an avid ARRI fan, added.

For the budding cinematographer, the biggest challenge was to find a way to maintain smooth camera movements with ALEXA LF, and TRINITY was an easy solution to her problem. She enlisted the help of Indonesia’s first-ever TRINITY operator, Hanafi Malik. 

“Vera needed the TRINITY to help with shooting scenes that require the characters to move from room to room freely without any limitations. We also wanted to eliminate the horizon problem that usually occurs with the conventional Steadicam,” Hanafi said. “Having the freedom to crane up and down was definitely a game-changer for camera stabilization systems.”

The TRINITY and ALEXA LF showed their capabilities during a fight scene between two characters in the film. “The space was too tight to do a 360° shot with standard tracks but TRINITY made it happen, while still maintaining a perfect horizon. Although the ALEXA LF was quite heavy on the TRINITY, I was amazed at how the gimbal could handle the load and still keep its original fluidity,” Hanafi revealed.

Recently certified by ARRI, the TRINITY operator shared how the first hybrid camera stabilizer has changed how he prepares and shoots scenes: “Now that I understand the real potential of TRINITY, it is my responsibility to impart to directors and DPs what the rig can do in supporting their visual treatment. Many TRINITY operators brought inspiration to Indonesian filmmakers by showing us TRINITY’s ability to create more dynamic shots. I want to do the same and break limitations.”

TRINITY is not the only innovation making waves in Indonesia, large format is also taking over the country's image-making industry. “Large format is growing fast in Indonesia. It’s not only for feature films and the big screen, but it’s also used by many cinematographers for tv commercials and other media,” said Lestafa. With more large-format film and tv projects in the works, Indonesia’s growing industry is definitely something to watch out for.

“Under the Age” (“Di Bawah Umur”) is streaming in Indonesia on Disney+ Hotstar.