Embedded with fierce violence and haunting imagery, this hard-hitting documentary exposes the perpetrators of the Indonesian killings of 1965–66 in the present day; where almost a million people were killed.
When Suharto overthrew Sukarno, the President of Indonesia, following the failed coup of the 30 September Movement in 1965, the gangsters Anwar Congo and Adi Zulkadry in Medan (North Sumatra) were promoted from selling black market movie theatre tickets to leading the most powerful death squad in North Sumatra. They also extorted money from ethnic Chinese as the price for keeping their lives. Anwar is said to have personally killed 1,000 people.
Anwar and others like him are encouraged to reenact their mass-killings in whichever cinematic genres they wish, including classic Hollywood crime scenarios and lavish musical numbers.
Did you know?
An early scene shows Pancasila Youth members collecting extortion money from several shop owners. It is not a re-enactment. During a masterclass at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London on June 28th, 2014, director Joshua Oppenheimer claimed that he paid back the extortion victims in full with his own money, on the same day of the shoot. According to him, he would stay behind, under the false pretense of getting the shop owners to sign release forms, while his crew accompanied the Pancasila gangsters as they visited other shops. Read More