The Act of Killing (Director's Cut)

(Denmark, Indonesia, 2012, 159 mins, DCP)
In Indonesian, English with English subtitles
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Screening in the 159 minute Director’s Cut

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Probably the most radical and powerful film you will experience this year, The Act of Killing is a searing expose of political amnesia and impunity in Indonesia, where the gangsters and thugs behind the murders of millions are celebrated as champions of free enterprise. It is also a surreal, provocative exploration of the psyches of these men - killers who proudly re-enact their atrocities for the camera, willing collaborators in their own cinematic bonfire of the vanities.

When the Indonesian government was overthrown in 1965, small-time gangster Anwar Congo and his friends went from selling movie tickets on the black market to leading anti-Communist death squads.Half a century later, when Joshua Oppenheimer and his (incognito) partners approached the dapper septuagenarian about participating in a film, he leapt at it. But for Anwar and his friends, being in a movie is not to provide reflective testimony, but a chance to dance their way through musical numbers, twist arms in film noir gangster scenes, and gallop across the prairies as yodeling cowboys. A cinematic fever dream, The Act of Killing presents a gripping conflict between moral imagination and moral catastrophe.

Screening in the 159-minute Director’s Cut