The Look of Silence

Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Act of Killing, for all itsgruesomeness, was one of my top films of 2013.This is a companion piece to that, but the emphasis is on the victims rather than the perpetrators.

While not quite as punch-you-in-the-face as The Act of Killing (although maybe it would be if you haven’t already visited Oppenheimer’s previous film), a couple of things are quite remarkable. One is the Silence of the title – Oppenheimer is content for there to be numerous, lengthy silences throughout, leaving the camera on individuals so that it is evident that words are only half (or sometimes not at all) the truth.

The other is the total courage of the protagonist Adi. He surely must be putting himself and his family in danger all over again, but his simple insistence on forcing people to face the grisly truth is brave beyond anything I can imagine.

I only hope Oppenheimer hasn’t left him high and dry.

One thought on “The Look of Silence

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