Indonesia’s elderly death squad members play themselves in documentary
Joshua Oppenheimer’s latest documentary, The Act of Killing, shows just what happened in Indonesia during 1965 as ‘small-time gangsters who sold movie theatre tickets on the black market’ became death squad leaders, helping to kill more than 1 million people in less than a year. Today, these death squad leaders have become role models for millions of young paramilitaries and live in a society where ‘killers can joke about crimes against humanity on television chat shows, and celebrate moral disaster with the ease and grace of a soft shoe dance number’.
But if that doesn’t make your blood boil, these killers are actually playing themselves in the documentary and re-enacting the killings. Oppenheimer uses dramatic lighting, props and special effects to get his ‘actors’ to open up so he could deliver an ‘exploration of the mind of a mass murderer – however strange or normal they may seem’.
Via Now this is News