Indonesians enjoy 'Cinema under the stars' despite pandemic curbs
January 20, 2021

Indonesians enjoy ‘Cinema under the Stars’ while maintaining social distancing

BANDUNG (INDONESIA) – In the Indonesian city of Bandung, lines of teepee-style tents come upon a hilltop that overlooks the cityscape each evening and there will be a large screen on the lawn.

Known as ‘Cinema Under the Stars’, this is an outdoor camp-style movie arena which was opened two months ago in the capital of the province of West Java in a bid to keep people entertained while maintaining social distancing.

 “Movies are usually watched indoors… but now we have this outdoor cinema with the view of Bandung,” said Lidia Utari, a 20-year-old resident Lidia Utari.

“And what’s more interesting is that they use tents here, so I wanted to give it a try,” she added.

There are pillows, blankets and snacks in the tents apart from hand sanitisers and disinfectant to adhere to health protocols, said organisers.

Movie lovers sit at the entrance of the tents with small tables in front on which are placed snacks and drink along with candlelight.

The 28 tents are spaced about 1.5 metres to 2 metres apart (5 to 6.6 ft) and not more than three are allowed in each one.

The cost for each tent is 215,000 rupiah ($15.25) per movie.

“We started this business during the pandemic, that’s why we were brainstorming about how to attract visitors as people have a thirst for entertainment in times like these,” said Ilham Fahri Suhada, one of the organisers.

Indonesia has the highest number of coronavirus cases and fatalities in Southeast Asia with more than 530,000 infections and 16,000 deaths.

According to health experts, the actual rates may be much higher because of limited testing and contact tracing.

Unlike its neighbours, the country with a population of 270 million has not imposed national lockdowns. Instead, there are local curbs.

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