The Act of Killing | Chicago Reader

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122 minutes · 2013

Anwar Congo seems like a gentle, soft-spoken old man, but in the mid-60s he murdered as many as a thousand people when the Indonesian military, capitalizing on a brief coup attempt against President Sukarno, decided to exterminate the Communist Party of Indonesia. More than a half million people died in the purge, many of them beheaded. In Joshua Oppenheimer's unique and unforgettable documentary The Act of Killing, Congo stands on the rooftop patio of his home, demonstrating how he would minimize blood flow by tying a length of wire to a post, wrapping it around a victim's neck, and pulling against it with his full weight. Later the snowy-haired old man sits at home with his grandchildren all around him, watching the earlier scene on video. "I would never have worn white pants," he remarks. Continue reading >>

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