TIMELINE OF INDONESIAN MOVIE HISTORY
Indonesian film industry has been around for a long long time, it's all started in 1926, even before Indonesia became an independent nation. If you want to learn more about timeline of Indonesian movie industry including a comprehensive list of all the movies ever produced, there's an official catalog that's currently out now but it's in Indonesian language only.
The catalog of all Indonesian movies ever made from 1926 - 2005
The golden era of Indonesian movies were back in the mid 70s - late 80s. Indonesian filmmakers used to get very warm responds from their audiences and the quality of movies were also above average with great script, stories, and visualisation, not to mention high-rate professional acting qualities by legendary actors/actresses such as Jenny Rachman, Slamet Raharjo, Christine Hakim, Alex Komang, Benjamin S, Bing Slamet, Meriam Bellina, Paramitha Rusady, even Rano Karno, and Warkop for slapstick comedies.
Most of the movies had war epic theme or period drama/romantic/war with high production values, great situational family dramas, martial arts fantasy, and religious epic history. During the Mid 80s, before Ada Apa Dengan Cinta (What's up Love ? in English) or the lame Eifel... I'm in Love, there were two very succesful teenage romantic comedies that started it all, it was Catatan si Boy (Boy's Notes English) and Lupus.
After the two teenage dramas set the new tones for Indonesian movie industry in the late 80s, the Indonesian movie industry was flourish for a couple more years, many epic movies were produced, including the Internationally acclaimed Tjoet Nyak Dien (1988) which won so many awards and praises overseas, starring once again the uncomparable Christine Hakim (Time magazine's 50 Asian Heroes)
But soon the movie industry went downhill, part of the reason was heavy cencorship by the government limiting the creativity of talented scriptwriters and directors, not to mention that Indonesian theaters were soon filled by the high-flying Hong Kong Martial Arts flicks and ballet-like Hong Kong gangster movies and the overflowing Hollywood movies. Hollywood movies that normally took several years to get into the Indonesian shore suddently showed in the theaters in only a month or two after release in US and sometimes only weeks. Thus this was the beginning of the decline in Indonesian golden era of movie making, the 80s.
Many Production houses and actors/actresses were left with low-quality movies which focuses only on sexual exploitation, gory and cheesy horror movies and tasteless comedy. This trend continues for more than a decade, until the ressuraction of the industry by the younger, new wave of film makers who studied film making abroad or local young directors who possess new passions for their film industry.
And so now we had all these movies from the 2000 onward (check out Furanzisuka's thread on Indonesian movies 1990 - 2005 and 2005 onward such as Jelangkung, Ada Apa Dengan Cinta, Pasir Berbisik, Arisan! that sparked new life and new hope in the Indonesian movie industry once again and it's been going on full speed ever since.
Hofully the trend will continue ...