Melbourne-based film collective Dogmilk Films have just launched a crowdfunding campaign in support of their debut feature documentary ALUK , set in Toraja, Indonesia.

In Toraja, a person’s final breath is not a moment of finality but the start of both a physical transformation and a spiritual journey. At death, the body is embalmed with formaldehyde, and preserved in the family home until their unique and spectacular funeral ceremony.

Aluk explores themes of spiritual and cultural legacy, and connection to the environment and ancestry through the eyes of an elderly Torajan shaman. Ne Minda is one of the last of his kind to practice Aluk To Dolo, Toraja’s ancient animist religion, that originated the regions distinctive death rituals. In the face of mass Christian conversion, and increasingly globalised cultural pressure, an ancient way of life and all its valuable teachings are at stake.

“Listening to Ne Minda and getting a sense of his profound connection to people and place inspired this project. ALUK seeks to examine the evolving Torajan approach to death and life, in the context of a massive cultural shift. We wanted to explore how an ancient oral tradition survives and adapts to a world where communication and cultural transmission is changing rapidly.”
Chris Cochrane-Friedrich (Director)


About Dogmilk Films

Dogmilk Films is a Melbourne-based independent filmmaking collective dedicated to the promotion and production of alternative and ambitious cinema. Through network sharing and a focus on the local, Dogmilk Films is a community driven venture that runs various screening events that supports young local film talent.


Sam Hewison (In-house Producer)
(+61)0452 345 824 |
Facebook: dogmilkfilms
Instagram: @dogmilkfilms