1 Feb – It does seem like a distant memory when our country was under the national-sanctioned Movement Control Order (MCO). Commencing on 18 March 2020, the MCO was part of our Malaysian government's efforts to contain and combat the coronavirus.
People were scared. People had died. These were the days when a vaccine was not yet developed. Fear and desperation were abound as many did not fully understand the situation. The Covid-19 pandemic was truly a global crisis of the pandemic.
However in this midst of the fear, lives continue to go on.
Directed by Don Hoe, "Returning Home" is a Malaysian production by Full Billion Entertainment Production. The drama focuses on the period during the MCO when the unsung heros, specifically from the Civil Defence Force, gave their full commitment to assist citizens, maintain order, and literally saving many lives.
As many of us continued on with our daily lives – adults were working from homes and children's physical schooling were switched to online learning – there were many unsung heroes who served as our bullet-proof vests to safeguard our lives.
"Returning Home" tells the story about the bravery and dedication of the heroes from the Civil Defence (APM), St John Ambulance (SJAM), Lions Clubs as well as Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department (PBS) who had put their lives on the line to save others.
Sometimes we forget that they are humans too and also have families of their own who eagerly await their return home from their dangerous duties. They have struggled and sacrificed so much of their time away from their own families. They have to deal with their personal problems while helping others and putting themselves at risk on a daily basis. In the meantime, their families have to cope without them as they render help and serve others.
"I want to make this movie because I want to show people the importance of the Civil Defence Force during the MCO," said director Don Hoe. A Penangite, Hoe filmed most of the scenes in his island state. "Most of us know that the army, police, doctors and nurses were the frontliners when Covid-19 hit us. Civil Defence personnel were no less important," he added.
As an associate Civil Defence Force officer, Hoe believes that he has a responsibility as a filmmaker to show the heroic and selfless acts of his force members who had given their fullest commitment.
We are all grateful to all the frontliners and the unsung heros who have risked their lives to save ours. At the end of the day, they too, want to just return home.
"Returning Home" opens 2 February at major cinemas nationwide.