Directed by: Audun Amundsen
Written by: Fredrik Horn Akselsen, Audun Amundsen, Audun Kvitland
Starring: Audun Kvitland Røstad
If you ask a person who has/had gone viral for tips on how they managed to burn the Internet, they will generally come up with this simple line of explanation, “I don’t know. I never planned for it.” Indeed, it’s our accidents that generally catch fire, and great things happen when we least expect them to happen. Take Audun Kvitland Røstad, a Norwegian singer who broke the digital world with his song Nasi Padang, a love letter to one of Indonesia’s most popular dishes called Nasi Padang.
While on a short vacation with his buddy Petter in Indonesia, Audun stumbled upon his heaven in the form of Nasi Padang (Nasi is the name of the rice, and Padang is the name of the city where the food is from). Audun was mesmerized by its taste. He developed a kind of romantic relationship with this meal. The hangover remained even after he returned to Norway. His longing for Nasi Padang took him to the Internet, but he didn’t find the food anywhere in his region. Like a boyfriend penning an ode in the memory of his beautiful inamorata, Audun picked up his instrument and sang his heart out for Nasi Padang. He uploaded the video and went to his bed. Little did Audun know that his song would overnight elevate him to celebrity status.
Art, of any type, has the power to break the boundaries. The artist needs to only be true to himself, and his work would find acceptance in the hearts of the audiences. Audun’s song is a mix of humor and passion. You laugh because the lyrics confess love for food, but you also notice the reflection of intimacy in his words. One person got so attached to his song that she started to miss her hometown, family, food, and culture. She is Amelia, who left her hometown and moved to Malaysia for 15 years. The effect was not just personal but also political as it drove the government of the two countries to strengthen their relationship.
Help, I’ve Gone Viral! gives you a taste of the viral life though I wish it had shown a little bit more about Audun’s grappling of the situation. There is a scene where he is shown nervous before performing live on national television. There should have been more such scenes showing the internal feelings of Audun. Nevertheless, for now, you can take a peek at the glorious life and pray for your next piece to go viral.