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In the film The Platform, you see a lot of these words and names:

  • Goreng
  • Trimagasi
  • Imogiri

These are Indonesian words. Why this connection?

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The plot can be interpreted as a critic to (not-only) Communism, as said by the director Galter Gaztelu-Urrutia in an interview to El Cultural.

Pol Pot was a Cambodian dictator who ruled Cambodia (a country located in the southern portion of the Indochina peninsula in Southeast Asia) between 1975 and 1979.

An estimated 300,000 Cambodians starved to death between 1979 and 1980 because of Pol Pot's policies.

The American punk-rock band Dead Kennedys wrote a song called "Holiday in Cambodia" in 1980, in which there are clear references to Pol Pot and his terrible government.

When it comes to the plot, all these characters' names were assigned by The Administration. It comes clear when Goreng introduces himself to Trimagasi and asks which name was assigned to him (not "what is your name?").

The Administration can be faced as a centralized government entity: make the rules, keeps the whole structure, set the menu, all its members look tidy and clean, well-fed and are metaphorical "above" all others. Including they don't care/know about nation needs (any coincidence to the real government?).

Given that, maybe the Camdobian history facts and Southeast Asia related common words could be used as inspiration to name the characters (just opinion, unconfirmed, lack sources).


Other points about the names:

  • Goreng stands from "nasi goreng", literally meaning "fried rice" in Indonesian.
  • Trimagasi maybe refers to "Terima Kashi", literally meaning "thank you" in Malaysian.
  • Imoguiri maybe refers to "Imogiri", an Indonesian royal graveyard in Java island.
  • Baharat means "pepper" in Arabic and also is referred to a mix of condiments used in some Middle East countries.
  • Mr. Brambang refers directly to "brambang", a kind of Javanese purple onion.
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    Terima Kashi - this is Thank You in Indonesian. The only Asian country reference. Thanks for your answer, it has great details. It would have all come together if it was a Cambodian reference rather than Indonesian. – MovieMe Mar 31 at 10:56
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VERTICAL SOCIAL MOBILITY (or the Indonesian vertical farm haha)

So 'Al freír de los huevos lo verá' is a Spanish maxim utilised by Miguel de Cervantes which means 'You will see (the result) when the eggs are fried (at the end)' in his book Don Quixote (Part I, Chapter XXXVII)? Yes!

The Platform portrays (read: criticises?) (sorta) the Indonesian vertical social mobility during the rule of its 2nd president, Suharto. The socialists-created 'Gabungan Serikat Buruh Vertikal Indonesia' (Federation of Vertical Labour Companies of Indonesia) was ousted by communists (in the form of 'Partai Komunis Indonesia' or PKI = Indonesian Communist Party). It was changed into the PKI's labour wing; 'Sentral Organisasi Buruh Seluruh Indonesia' (All-Indonesia Labourers' Central Organisation) which was the first & largest trade union federation in Indonesia.

'Trimagasi'(='terima kasih' = 'thank you' in Indonesian/Malay language) for the wisdom given by Goreng (Fried = the experienced one) which he also took with him to his end/'grave' (Imogiri, maybe?)

P.S. 'Baharat' (Arabic for 'mixture of spices') and 'Brambang' (Indonesian for 'red onion') are commonly consumed by the South East Asian vertical social ranks' climbers, including those in Indonesia.

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  • Thank you, this is very interesting, I will read this up. – MovieMe Apr 7 at 18:35

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