8.3/10
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23 user 181 critic

The Look of Silence (2014)

Trailer
1:45 | Trailer

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A family that survived the genocide in Indonesia confronts the men who killed one of their brothers.

Director:

Joshua Oppenheimer
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 48 wins & 42 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Adi Rukun ... Himself, brother of murdered Ramli Rukun
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
M.Y. Basrun M.Y. Basrun ... Himself, former commander of a civilian militia
Amir Hasan Amir Hasan ... Himself, former leader of death squad (archive footage)
Inong ... Himself, former leader the village death squad
Kemat Kemat ... Himself, survivor from Snake River massacre
Joshua Oppenheimer ... Himself (voice) (as Josh)
Amir Siahaan Amir Siahaan ... Himself, former commander of Snake River death squads
Ted Yates Ted Yates ... Himself, reporter, NBC News (archive footage)
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Storyline

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.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Astonishing. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG - 13 for thematic material involving disturbing graphic descriptions of atrocities and inhumanity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Language:

Indonesian

Release Date:

17 July 2015 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A csend képe See more »

Filming Locations:

Indonesia

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,616, 19 July 2015, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$109,089

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$332,710
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joshua Oppenheimer spent several months working on the sound design of the film because he wanted the audience to be in the intimate spaces between the characters. See more »

Quotes

Himself, former commander of a civilian militia: I'm not Rambo. I was Secretary General of the Komando Aksi.
Himself, brother of murdered Ramli Rukun: Or is it so great a crime that you did not want to admit?
Himself, former commander of a civilian militia: No, I do not think that's great.
Himself, brother of murdered Ramli Rukun: But a million people died...
Himself, former commander of a civilian militia: That's politics. Politics is the process of achieving your ideals.
[laughing]
Himself, former commander of a civilian militia: In many ways...
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Connections

Featured in The Oscars (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Lukisan Malam
music by E. Sambayon & lyrics by Sakti Alamsyah
performed by Sam Saimun
courtesy of Irama Records
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User Reviews

 
Unfathomable
16 November 2017 | by jadavixSee all my reviews

It's hard to "review" a movie like "The Look of Silence". You don't really watch it and evaluate it like you do anything else. You bear witness.

I have never been able to write anything about its prequel, "The Act of Killing". I broke my rule of reviewing every movie I watch on here because I just wasn't up to the task. Watching that movie, and "The Look of Silence" to a slightly lesser extent, was like being dosed with heroin and hit with a sledgehammer. The usual "disturbing" movie, documentary or otherwise, has an impact that can be shaken off eventually. With "The Act of Killing", I never really felt it, but I knew it was there. It took something from me. The impact bled through into my day to day life. It wasn't just like a bad dream. It was real.

Here is "The Look of Silence". It gives a different side of the story that "Act of Killing" presented, through the son of survivors of the Indonesian genocide. He learns about the fate of his older brother, killed two years before his birth. Then he confronts some of the killers and their families, though these meetings don't go as you might expect, especially for the son, Adi.

This movie really should be watched alongside "The Act of Killing". Whereas "The Look of Silence" is no less horrible in its descriptions of actual murder, I have a feeling that it is the goodness of Adi and his family you will remember.


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