8.2/10
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118 user 260 critic

The Act of Killing (2012)

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2:12 | Trailer
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.

Directors:

Joshua Oppenheimer, Anonymous (co-director) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 53 wins & 41 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Anwar Congo ... Himself - Executioner in 1965
Herman Koto ... Himself - Gangster and Paramilitary Leader
Syamsul Arifin Syamsul Arifin ... Himself - Governor of North Sumatra
Ibrahim Sinik Ibrahim Sinik ... Himself - Newspaper Publisher
Yapto Soerjosoemarno ... Himself - Leader of Pancasila Youth
Safit Pardede Safit Pardede ... Himself - Local Paramilitary Leader
Jusuf Kalla ... Himself - Vice President of Indonesia
Adi Zulkadry ... Himself - Fellow Executioner in 1965
Soaduon Siregar Soaduon Siregar ... Himself - Journalist
Suryono ... Himself - Anwar's Neighbor
Haji Marzuki Haji Marzuki ... Himself - Member of North Sumatra Parliament (as Marzuki)
Haji Anif ... Himself - Paramilitary Leader and Businessman
Rahmat Shah Rahmat Shah ... Himself - Member of Parliament
Sakhyan Asmara Sakhyan Asmara ... Himself - Deputy Minister of Youth and Sport
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Storyline

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.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A story of killers who win, and the society they build See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

UK | Denmark | Norway

Language:

Indonesian | English

Release Date:

8 November 2012 (Denmark) See more »

Also Known As:

Actul de a ucide See more »

Filming Locations:

Medan, Indonesia See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$27,450, 21 July 2013

Gross USA:

$486,919

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$726,324
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended) | (TV) | (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the films chosen for the 42nd annual New Directors/New Films showcase in March 2013, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, co-sponsored by the Film Society of Lincoln Center. See more »

Quotes

Anwar Congo: It's a good family movie; plenty of humor; a great story; Wonderful scenery. It really show what's special about our country even though it's a film about death.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The name "Anonymous" appears 49 times under 27 different crew positions in the credits. This was done to protect the identities of those crew members who feared retribution from the former Indonesian death squad leaders. See more »

Alternate Versions

The 159-min version is the director's cut. It is the only version being released in Indonesia, and was released alongside the 115-min version in Danish cinemas. Compared to the shorter version, the 159-minute version reveals more of the filmmaking method and also explores the role of propaganda cinema in maintaining anti-communist fervor. The fiction scenes take over the film's form to the extent that ultimately the boundaries between fiction and documentary blur. In the final act, Anwar's descent in the long version is longer and more complex. See more »

Connections

References The Searchers (1956) See more »

Soundtracks

Bunga Seroja
Composer: Husein Bawafie
Courtesy of Ridho Bawafie
See more »

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User Reviews

 
You must see this movie, you simply must
19 July 2013 | by RolyRolySee all my reviews

It seems almost trivial to "rate" a movie that is this important but like some of the tothers i have given it a 10 because people need to see it.

I have never been as completely chilled by a film in my life, and I have seen plenty of brutal documentaries. The atrocities committed by the Indonesian death squads, and so vividly re-enacted, are not easy to watch and I expect that many people would rather just turn away and ignore them, but you owe it to yourselves to sit through them.

I have just finished reading Steven Pinker's excellent book The Better Angels of Our Nature in which he argues that humanity is far less violent now than we have ever been. That may be so, but if you are looking for a compelling counter-argument you can start with this film. I can assure that that you will never forget it.


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