Kedok Ketawa (The Laughing Mask) is a 1940 action film from the Dutch
East Indies, in present-day Indonesia. After a young couple falls in
love, the title character, a vigilante, helps them fight off criminals
who have been sent to kidnap the woman by a rich man who wants her as
his wife. It was the first film of Union Films, one of four new
production houses established after the country’s ailing film industry
was revived by the success of Albert Balink’s Terang Boelan. Kedok
Ketawa was directed by Jo An Djan and stars Basoeki Resobowo, Fatimah,
Oedjang (as the vigilante), S Poniman and Eddy Kock. Featuring fighting,
comedy, and singing, and advertised as an “Indonesian cocktail of
violent actions … and sweet romance”, the film received positive
reviews, particularly for its cinematography. Following the success of
the film, Union produced another six before being shut down in early
1942 during the Japanese occupation. Screened until at least August
1944, the film may be lost.
Today’s selected anniversaries:
According to tradition, Emperor Jimmu (ukiyo-e depiction
pictured) founded Japan and established his capital in Yamato.
About 100 boys were killed in a human crush at the Convent of
the Minori Osservanti on the last day of the Maltese Carnival in
Friedrich Ebert was elected the first President of the German
Weimar Republic by the Weimar National Assembly.
The BBC aired an adaptation of Karel Čapek’s play R.U.R., the
first science fiction television programme ever broadcast.
After two black employees were killed on the job, about 1,300
black sanitation workers in Memphis, Tennessee, U.S., began a strike
that lasted over two months.
Wiktionary’s word of the day:
Collectively, the powerful and influential businesspeople and tycoons of
Wikiquote quote of the day:
A scientist’s aim in a discussion with his colleagues is not to
persuade, but to clarify.
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