petak, 21. rujna 2012.

The Act of Killing - 3 ratna zločinca insceniraju svoja ubojstva

Tri zloglasna indonezijska ratna zločinca imaju priliku u ovom dokumentarcu odglumiti neka od ubojstava koja su počinili tijekom državnog udara 1965. Napokon glume poput pravih američkih glumaca, koje su pak oponašali u svojim pravim ubojstvima. 
A zašto su i dalje na slobodi? Zato što pobjednici određuju kriterije ratnog zločina, a mi smo pobijedili, kaže jedan od njih. Vidimo i nekog političara koji pred zapjenjenim antikomunistima viče - trebaju nam naši gangsteri da obave posao (pobiju oko milijun komunjara).
Poznato, poznato. 
Gdje bi bio progres da nema ljudi spremnih obaviti prljave poslove?

The Act of Killing // Jagal

The Act of Killing // Jagal gives me a horrifying chill down the back of my soul. Three infamous war crime “heroes” from Indonesia are given the opportunity to re-dramatize and relive their memories of murder. It’s a weighty and obviously controversial subject matter that definitely stretches the limits to what the nature of evil can reach. Triple-threat direction by Joshua Oppenheimer, Christine Cynn, and Anonymous, while being executively produced by Werner Herzog and Errol Morris.
More background story details can be read as follows (via TIFF 2012):
“In this chilling and inventive documentary, executive produced by Errol Morris and Werner Herzog, the unrepentant former members of Indonesian death squads are challenged to re-enact some of their many murders in the style of the American movies they love…”
“I have not come across a documentary as powerful, surreal, and frightening in a decade,” wrote Werner Herzog after seeing an early preview of THE ACT OF KILLING, and both he and Errol Morris were impressed enough to sign on as executive producers. A chilling and revelatory exploration of the sometimes perilously thin line between film violence and real-life violence, the film investigates a murderous, oft-forgotten chapter of history in a way that is startlingly original and bound to stir debate: enlisting a group of former killers to re-enact their lives (and deaths) in the style of the film noirs, musicals and westerns that they love.
THE ACT OF KILLING’s subjects are the Indonesian paramilitary leader Anwar Congo and his band of dedicated followers. In the 1960s, Anwar was a small-time gangster who sold movie tickets on the black market and found an idealized self-image in the gunslinging heroes on the screen. Coming out of the midnight show, he and his friends felt “just like gangsters who had stepped off the screen,” and were enraged by the communists who boycotted American films — the most popular and profitable. When the government of President Sukarno was overthrown by the military in 1965, Anwar and his cohorts joined in the mass murder of more than one million alleged communists, ethnic Chinese and intellectuals. Anwar and his friends take pride in their past and are eager to recreate it in the form of movie scenes with elaborate sets, costumes, pyrotechnics and extras enlisted to play victims. But as movie violence and real-life violence intertwine, Anwar’s boastfulness gradually gives way to expressions of unease and regret.
Unlike other nations where the perpetrators of genocide have been brought to justice or disgraced, in Indonesia the killers stayed in power, wrote their own triumphant history, and became role models for millions of young paramilitaries to this day. Co-director Joshua Oppenheimer has spent over a decade working with death squads and their victims, which comes through in his knowledge of and passionate investment in this subject. This is a film people will be talking about for years to come. – Thom Powers
How Hollywood Movies Led to Genocide: The Act of Killing at the Toronto Film Festival

The best, most daring and form-defying documentaries in the world right now are being funded by the Danish Film Institute, and so it goes that the nonfiction knockout of TIFF thus far is The Act of Killing -- made with Danish support and directed by American Joshua Oppenheimer, executive produced by Errol Morris and Werner Herzog.
Hot on the heels of the US premiere of The Ambassador, like Mads Brugger's film Killing uses performance and fictionalization to lay bare shocking truths about the flow of power in a third-world state, but Oppenheimer's moving, horrifying, ethically problematic film couldn't possibly have higher stakes. A testament: one of the producers and co-directors, and most of the Indonesian production staff, are listed in the credits as "Anonymous."
Early onscreen titles brief us on the genocide of "communists" (actual and accused), dissidents and ethnic Chinese in Indonesia in 1965-66. Many of the perpetrators of the over 1 million murders are still alive, and are held up in contemporary Indonesia as heroes, featured on daytime talk shows and honored as the godfathers of an enormously powerful paramilitary organization. "When we met the killers," reports the titles, "they proudly told us stories about what they did." Director Oppenheimer offered the now-aged war criminals the opportunity to dramatize their memories of the massacres for his cameras, an offer that these "movie theater gangsters," who started out selling tickets to Hollywood films on the black market and picked up execution techniques from "Marlon Brando and Al Pacino" movies, cannot refuse.
"This is who we are," says top executioner Anwar Congo, proudly, without a shred of shame or remorse. "We must tell the story of what we did when we were young." The Act of Killing combines these filmed sequences with documentation of how they came together, and of how the gangsters-turned-stars and directors respond to the process of turning their real, movie-influenced atrocities back into "entertainment."
Congo frequently notes that the Indonesian word for "gangster" is derived from the words for "free men," and clearly, in his mind, the justification for the killings comes from a distortion of the Cold War-era West's notion of freedom, of capitalist free will over "communist" oppression. The Act of Killing never mentions Indonesia's role in the global economy (Oppenheimer covered that in his previous film, The Globalisation Tapes), but the clear subtext is that this country that allowed and even celebrates these horrors is a place that the West helped to invent, directly through political aid (the massacres were facilitated and/or cheered on by US agencies as a Cold War victory), and less directly through our need for cheap manufacturing (GM just announced plans to build a new plant there) and through our cultural exports. The gangsters, who stage their dramatizations through the using of genres ranging from noir to Westerns to musicals, see Oppenheimer's project, at least in part, as a way to finally become the movie stars they've emulated, and also do the Hollywood films that they love one better; as one executioner proudly notes, "No film has ever used our method" of killing. Certainly, their lived experiences give their performances that Method actors Brando and Pacino would, er, kill for.
Killing is more than a bit over-long, and it so sags in the middle that you start to worry that these "free men" have been given too much freedom by the documentarian, that in giving them enough rope to hang themselves (so to speak), the director is also enabling the horrific glorification the thugs crave. But then one of the killers begins to be changed by the process. In one crucial scene, he even claims to have come to understand the fear his victims felt through acting their parts. Off-camera, Oppenheimer carefully yet pointedly tells his subject that he'll never really know that fear just by participating an exercise that he knows is constructed, which he knows he'll come out of alive. Hearing that difference stated out loud seems to flip a switch in the mass murderer; it certainly refocuses the moral agenda of the film.

The Act of Killing – review

Joshua Oppenheimer's surreal, astonishing documentary recreates the atrocities of 1960s Indonesian death squads
The Act of Killing
The Act of Killing is 'the best, and most horrific, film of this year's Toronto film festival'.
When Werner Herzog says a film is the most frightening and most surreal he's seen in at least a decade, you know need to steel yourself. He's right. Here's the best, and the most horrific, movie of this year's Toronto film festival.
It's a documentary about the Indonesian death squads of the mid-1960s who tortured and killed communists. But it's also a film within a film, as director Joshua Oppenheimer urges the ageing gangsters to recreate their acts on increasingly elaborate scale (prosthetics, props, drag outfits, soundtrack, location shooting). They grin and mug just as they also take it very, very seriously. A strangulation scene is interrupted by the call for evening prayers. But they return after their ablutions.
At first you suspect this will riff on familiar ground, with the main interviewees, former members of paramilitary organisation Pancasila Youth, explaining how they were inspired in both their look and sadism by the movies. The most charismatic of them, Anwar Congo, who has a radical hair dye job a third of the way through in reaction to the rushes, is slightly haunted by his acts, he admits, which he tries to forget with music and dancing. And booze. And marijuana. And ecstasy. Others are scornful of any regret: "You feel haunted because your mind is weak. It's just a nerve imbalance."
The frank corruption of politics, the glee of the media ("One wink and they were dead!" grins a local publisher), the killers' happy embrace by the government ("We need gangsters to get things done", says a senior minister) – this sheer giddy chutzpah has remarkable cumulative effect. We watch these gangsters (everyone emphasises their belief that the word stems from "free men") talking trash to female caddies on the golf course, waxing lyrical about the merits a life of "relax and Rolex".
Some have criticised Oppenheimer for not interviewing anyone who survived the ordeal. It doesn't matter. We know this was genocide. We know that they'd be likely to feel fairly aggrieved. These men hoist themselves and do more besides. The most extraordinary scene comes during one of the recreations. One of Anwar's neighbours, who is moonlighting as the victim, laughingly suggests they use in the film a story that he has. It's of a man – ok, it's his stepfather, he says – who was dragged from his bed at 3am by the death squad, to the sound of the screams of his wife and children (that's him, he laughs, that's me!). The next day they found his body beneath a barrel and then buried it by the side of the road, "like a goat", so frightened were they that they too would be taken. The percolation of reaction among the men listening is the most compelling thing you'll ever seen.
It's often said of documentaries that they deserve to have as wide an audience as possible. This doesn't deserve; it demands – not for what it says about present-day Indonesia or even about its former horrors. But because almost every frame is astonishing.

Telluride Review: Harrowing 'Act of Killing' Is the Most Unsettling Movie About Mass Killing Since 'Shoah'

by Eric Kohn

A scene from "The Act of Killing."
In Joshua Oppenheimer's "The Act of Killing," a pair of gangsters -- responsible for murdering an untold number of suspected communists in the years following the 1965 overthrow of the Indonesian government -- get the chance to recount their experiences. At first showing no visible remorse, the men boast of their achievements, and Oppenheimer capitalizes on their enthusiasm with a twisted gimmick: The men are given numerous opportunities to reenact the murders for Oppenheimer's camera, sometimes emphasizing their brutality and occasionally delivering surreal, flamboyant takes that offer a grotesque spin on classic Hollywood musicals. Playing make believe with murderers, Oppenheimer risks the possibility of empowering them. However, by humanizing psychopathic behavior, "The Act of Killing" is unparalleled in its unsettling perspective on the dementias associated with dictatorial extremes.
Oppenheimer's main focus is a lean man named Anwar Congo, one of several former members of the Indonesian paramilitary organization Pancasila Youth. Drawing from American movie clichés for his image as a menacing bad guy, Congo and one of his colleagues indulge Oppenheimer with stories of their murderous achievements while also complaining about the perception they face from the rest of the world. "We have too much democracy," one of them says. Frequently, the men refer to their power of gangsters as "free men," but Oppenheimer gradually reveals that no matter how much they justify their past, they remain trapped by the lingering feelings of discomfort that their horrific deeds have planted in their heads.
Oppenheimer doesn't valorize Congo and his cohorts, but he does empower them, a decision that firmly places in "The Act of Killing" in a moral grey zone for much of its runtime. Killers dress up in drag and act in demented filmed sketches that include mock decapitations and other freakish acts while their friends cheer them on. They embrace the idea of coming across as cruel for the domineering presence it allows them.
But Oppenheimer's agenda slowly reveals itself. Even as Congo brags of his antics, he sports a bizarre form of naivete in which he fails to comprehend why his acts haunt him. By allowing Congo to struggle through this conundrum rather than setting him straight, Oppenheimer provides a close up of a mania that's too often relegated to imagination. Struggling to comprehend an objectively evil mentality, "The Act of Killing" explores the paradox of seemingly normal people content with their crimes. In one telling scene, the reenactment of a strangling is interrupted when the gangsters realize it's time for evening prayers.
At 115 minutes, "The Act of Killing" is a frequently devastating experience that smothers viewers with a one-sided point of view given the power to run wild. A large-scale reenactment of mass murder, replete with crying children and homes ablaze, seems real enough to make it evident that the gangsters would feel comfortable committing the same murders all over again. Elsewhere, the killers craft a freakish music video for "Born Free" that finds an actor in the role of the victim and thanking the men for "sending me to heaven."
These darkly comic displays allow Congo to finally question the nature of his acts in the abstract. Just what is he celebrating? Instead of arguing with Congo, Oppenheimer lets the man get the crazy out of his system in order to confront harsh truths in the closing minutes. The filmmaker only occasionally speaks up from behind the camera to remind his subject that, no matter how unsettled their crimes have left them, the experience was infinitely worse for their victims.
"The Act of Killing" has been shepherded along by executive producers Werner Herzog and Errol Morris, an apt pair for this quintessential look at murder as a primal phenomenon. While Oppenheimer achieves an unprecedented closeness with people responsible for death, his mission is not unlike the process behind Herzog's "Death Row" series (where the director interviews convicted murderers) and Morris' "Mr. Death," which centers on a retired executioner. More than anything else, however, Oppenheimer's process calls to mind Claude Lanzmann's Holocaust epic "Shoah," as both Lanzmann and Oppenheimer eschew archival footage in favor of letting their subjects actualize past misdeeds in the present. The reenactments provide a chilling closeness that no grainy footage could possibly convey.
The case can be made that Oppenheimer lets Congo and the other participants off too easy. They never receive a direct comeuppance. However, "The Act of Killing" vilifies these men by implication. It's possible they might not mind the way they come off for the camera, as they're all to eager to explain themselves; it's that very eagerness, however, that confirms their guilt.

Web stranica filma

Nema komentara:

Objavi komentar