A documentary which challenges former Indonesian death-squad leaders to reenact their mass-killings in whichever cinematic genres they wish, including classic Hollywood crime scenarios and lavish musical numbers.
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An Indonesian man with a communist background named Ramli was brutally murdered when the "Communist" purge occurred in 1965. His remaining family members lived in fear and silence until the making of this documentary. Adi, a brother of his, decided to revisit the horrific incident and visited the men who were responsible for the killings and one survivor of the purge. These meetings uncovered sadistic details of the murders and exposed raw emotions and reactions of the killers' family members about what happened in the past - much to Adi's disappointment.
Short-listed for 'Best Documentary' (last 15 films) at the 88th Academy Awards 2016. See more »
What support did you have from the Army?
Amir Hasan - Former Leader of Death Squad:
They waited at the road with the truck. They didn't come down here. They never came down here. They called this, 'The People's Struggle.' So, they kept their distance. If the Army was seen doing this, the world would be angry. 'The Army is killing Communists!' So, to protect their image they made it look like the people exterminated the Communists. But everybody knows the Army was behind it.
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'THE LOOK OF SILENCE': Four and a Half Stars (Out of Five)
A companion piece to director Joshua Oppenheimer's 2013 critically acclaimed documentary flick 'THE ACT OF KILLING'. The film centers around one man, who's brother was killed; during the Indonesian killings of 1965 to 1966. Oppenheimer once again directed the movie; which was nominated for an Academy Award, for Best Documentary Feature. I found it to be almost as good, as Oppenheimer's previous feature (which I ranked as one of the best of 2013).
Oppenheimer follows an Indonesian man around, that survived the 1965 genocide; by the name of Adi Rukun. Adi's brother, Ramli, was brutally killed; during the 'communist' purge (as a young boy). Adi now wants to confront Ramli's suspected killers (with Oppenheimer's help). He bravely interviews these men, under the pretense of an eye examiner, and seeks uncomfortable answers; as the viewer awkwardly watches.
The movie is extremely disturbing, and hard to watch; like it's predecessor. It's also very moving, at times, but never truly satisfying; as Adi can never truly get the honest answers he's looking for (and the suspected culprits show no remorse, of any kind). It's yet another masterpiece, from Oppenheimer; but some will feel like it's just an extension of the other film. That didn't bother me though.
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