“Autobiography” (2022) is the story of a young man who lives in an empty mansion as a housekeeper. When the owner of the mansion returns, who is running for election, this young man forms a bond with him and admires him like a father figure. When the owner’s election campaign poster is found destroyed, the young man decides to defend the situation and starts a chain of chaotic and violent events. Written and directed by Makbul Mubarak, read the article to find out what really happens in the movie.
The scene begins with a young man by the name of Rakib (Kevin Ardilova), who is enjoying eating peanuts while watching television. His activity is disrupted by a car horn, and he quickly goes to open the gate. The owner of the house, Purna (Arswendy Bening Swara), who was in the army, has returned. The scene shifts to the kitchen, where Purna is asking about Rakib’s family, and we see a warm treatment. Rakib collects the laundry while Purna is sleeping, and he goes to a sort of dingy club. One of his acquaintances provides him with an envelope of money that his brother has sent from Singapore and also offers him a job proposal for a construction worker in Singapore. The club lights go out, and Andri (Haru Sandra) and Rakib goes to check the generator. Running low on diesel, both of them go to fetch some, and Rakib asks for Andri’s help. In the next scene, we see Purna’s election campaign poster hoarding being placed and Purna giving a speech to a small audience. After the speech, everyone is seen eating, and Rakib is called in from the audience to eat with the Sergeant. They are returning home, and an incident occurs with the locals regarding a mosque, which Purna handles calmly, and Rakib is in awe of him. Next, we see both of them in prison, visiting Rakib’s father.
Purna gives Rakib his old uniform, and they are seen playing chess. Purna tells us it was Rakib’s father who taught him to play chess so well, and next, we see Purna teaching Rakib shooting. They go bird hunting, and while returning, Purna finds out some of his poster hoardings have been vandalized. Both Rakib and Purna look for evidence about where this incident happened. Rakib finds beer bottles and a piece of paper, which he keeps to himself. But Purna later discovers it, and we see a meeting with government officials in his home. Rakib tells Purna that he can find out who did this and asks Andri to ask his uncle, who has a beer shop, to know who brought beer the previous night. Purna asks Rakib to not do anything that is unsafe for him or the campaign, and we learn it was Agus who brought the beer.
Agus was a high school student who was given an inappropriate reply by Purna in the meeting he held. Rakib goes to the school and follows Agus to his home, asking Agus to come with him to apologize to Purna. After many denials, we see Rakib taking Agus to the General in his car. Purna says that he will meet Agus in the backroom and tells Rakib to stay outside. Rakib finds out Purna has beaten Agus with the same beer bottles and asks Rakib to take him to the hospital. Almost unconscious with blood dripping from his head, Agus is admitted to the hospital, and Rakib comes back to the General’s home. Back at night, we see both Rakib and Purna washing the car of the blood stains.
In the morning, while washing dishes, Rakib hears announcements and prayers outside the house that Agus has passed away. His mental state goes into disarray, and we see him breaking down in tears. Purna and Rakib are visiting Agus’s house, and in the car, Rakib says that he does not want to work for Purna anymore. Everyone is seen in their house in mourning, and one of the relatives says that they want help from the general in this incident as they believe it was the people from the hydropower plant company who have done this. They had a feud with Agus’s family over land. Later, it is seen that the general soothes the people there with a tale from his soldier days. The scene cuts back to Purna’s house, where he tells Rakib to relax, and the next morning we see Rakib visiting Agus’s grave. Rakib meets with the acquaintance who offered him a job in Singapore and wants to flee from the clutches of Purna. The acquaintance provides him with a date and time to meet and pick up the documents.
Next, we see Rakib packing things and that acquaintance providing the new documents on a bus. The military arrives at the scene and gets into the bus, cornering the acquaintance, and later gets hold of Rakib. We see the military has done this on the order of Purna and dropped Rakib at Purna’s home. Rakib avoids Purna, but we see a scene then where Purna forcefully bathes him. Rakib meets with his father in prison, who tells him to stay at home, and then Rakib drops Purna off at Hendrik’s place. Soon Rakib gets back to his home and takes out the gun from Purna’s wardrobe. When he gets to pick up Purna, Hendrik tags along, and they go to a karaoke bar. While returning home, Purna finds out someone has vandalized his poster hoarding again. When Purna goes to investigate in the field, Rakib takes a shot at him. Later, when Purna confronts Rakib, he accidentally shoots him dead. We see Rakib returning with the gun, and after some time, the police arrive with the body of Purna. The next day, soldiers started to arrive, and a police officer tells that Purna’s family would be here by tonight, and they wanted Rakib to give a eulogy. The film ends with Purna getting a military funeral and Rakib getting ready to give the eulogy.
The film “Autobiography” (2022) echoes the message “violence begets violence.” If Purna, whom Rakib saw as a father figure, would have spared Agus, then Rakib would not have killed Purna. The man who taught Rakib how to shoot becomes the victim of his own fate.