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COMMENT | Mat Kilau and our nostalgia for Britain

COMMENT | Our relationship with the British is weird. Were they colonisers who exploited us, or were they people we still somehow look up to and want to imitate?

The movie ‘Mat Kilau’ was the biggest Malaysian box office hit ever, with RM90 million in ticket sales. This was our version of an Islamic Rambo rebelling against the “oppression” of British rule. Yet Pahang, Selangor, and Penang announced that they would fly flags at half-mast for the recent funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.

This is confusing. If we believe the movie, the British were the “bad guys”. So how are we supposed to feel when Malaysian states honour the British Queen?

And here I am, a Malaysian with ancestors from China, writing this article in English. Is this because I am a descendant of Anglicised “Straits Chinese” who were once proud to be called “the King’s or Queen’s Chinese”?

Certain political parties claim that...

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