A Fresh Look at Melayu Boleh Video
In a past article, I lamented on the fact that the phrase melayu boleh has been robbed of its true value. Melayu boleh is no longer a phrase that motivates and inspires you but a phrase that is now linked to undesirable intentions.
I have no problem with people who have such undesirable lucah intentions as what they do are none of my business. I only lament at the fall of the “melayu boleh” from grace.
So the title of this article is not to mislead you, but to put this misused phrase to its proper lofty position. A melayu boleh video is a Malay video that inspires and motivates you whenever you’re feeling down and need that extra kick in the butt.
Let’s have look at a melayu boleh video that can motivate and inspire you.
Almost everyone I know in Malaysia has watched this classic Malay movie at least once, and almost every one I’ve met would agree that Ibu Mertuaku is one of the best Malay movie ever made. But will you agree that this movie can motivate and inspire you?
How can this tragic P.Ramlee movie that never fails to put tears in your eyes or a lump in your throat be a “melayu boleh video”?
A Tragic or a Melayu Boleh Video?
Motivating and inspirational are not words to describe a movie about an ex-blind musician who fork-blinded himself a second time when he discovered that his eye surgeon had stolen his “dead” gadis melayu wife. Depressing, morbid and melayu tak boleh are better words to describe the movie.
But I beg to differ.
Kassim Selamat the Principled Hero
What’s inspiring about the movie is not what Kassim Selamat did to his eyes, but how he stubbornly sticks to his principles throughout the entire movie. Kassim is a musician and wants to be a musician, and he’d rather be blind than be turned into someone he doesn’t want to be.
Take away his saxophone, and he’ll suffer. Give him a saxophone and he’ll find glory and happiness.
Kassim Selamat the Superhero
Every superhero has an ability or device that gives them a super power. If you remove this ability or device, the superhero is no longer a superhero for that superpower is what defines him as a person. In this sense Kassim Selamat is a super hero.
No, the saxophone is not his super device. His super-ability is his strong desire to be and be accepted as a musician. Just like the blind Daredevil has a walking stick to channel his extra-sensory perception, Kassim has his saxophone.
What happens when Kassim loses his Super-ability
In Spiderman 2 and Superman 2, both superheroes give up their powers which lead to disastrous consequences. In the same way when Kassim gives up being a musician, whether willingly or unwillingly, he suffers. Let’s see what happens when Kassim gives up his ability.
1. In the first act, Kassim is an accomplished musician. He’s happy and looks ready to take on the world. He even attracts afemale fan whom he marries despite her mother’s objection. After the marriage, life seems to go well at first but when he’s forced to give up his musical career at his wife’s insistence, that is when his life starts going downhill. By the end of the first act, Kassim not only loses his pregnant wife but his sight as well.
2. In the second act , Kassim now blind and homeless finds shelter at Chombi’s residence. Here, saddened by the lost of his pregnant wife, Kassim regains his super ability when he plays the saxophone which mesmerized the entire village. Life starts to change for the better from this point. Kassim drops his name and adorns a new superhero costume in the form of name – Osman Jailani. With his new superhero identity, blind Kassim becomes a successful musician and tours the states with his saxophone.
3. In the third act, Kassim’s wife, now married to an eye surgeon, realizes that Osman is in fact her former husband and father of her child. Filled with guilt, she pleads with her surgeon husband to fix Kassim’s eyes so that he can see again. Kassim finally undergoes the eye surgery and while he was recovering at the doctor’s residence, he discovers that his wife is still alive and married to the very surgeon who gives his sight back. At the end of the movie, Kassim commits eye-suicide and at this point viewers will no doubt question his bloody act. Why not just pack and leave and return to the arms of Chombi?
Kassim the Melayu Boleh Hero
By the end of the video, Kassim realizes that he no longer needs his eyesight. He realizes that blind or no blind does not make a difference to his musical career.
Kassim is already a successful and popoular musician under a new identity. Chombi and her mother have accepted Kassim for who he is – a blind musician.
The movie could have ended with Kassim leaving his wife and son without blinding himself, but the melayu-boleh lesson that we should learn from this movie remains the same.
The Melayu Boleh Lesson of Ibu Mertuaku
If you’ve read every word of this lengthy piece, you probably will see the lesson that can be learned from Ibu Mertuaku.
I’m not the kind of person who’d give sagely advice, so I’d stop here and let you re-watch the video again and ponder for yourself. But one thing I can say is Kassim Selamat is not usual tragic hero but a melayu boleh hero who I can look upon to motivate and inspire myself.
Farhan Salleh is a melayu boleh writer who loves to blog about cerita melayu panas. Farhan and his awek melayu tudung loves to take 3gp videos of their comel cat, and will one day compile them as a melayu 3gp videos collection and post this not so melayu boleh video on youtube.