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From 13 May 2015

The Look of Silence The Look of Silence

Joshua Oppenheimer / Denmark, Indonesia, Norway, Finland, United Kingdom / 2014 / 103 min / Indonesian

After his 2012 documentary, The Act of Killing, Joshua Oppenheimer delves further into Indonesia’s dark legacy, this time focusing on the perspective of victims.

The film's key figure is optometrist Adi, whose life has been strongly marked by a family tragedy. His older brother was savagely murdered five decades ago during the mass slaughter of communists. Together with director Joshua Oppenheimer, Adi decides to confront each of his brother's killers after ten years of silence. While conducting eye exams, he quizzes his patients about their memories of the violent era. Adi manages these painful encounters with dignity, not demanding to learn the truth as much as see a glitter of regret in the killers’ eyes.

»The Look of Silence, is, I hope, a poem about a silence borne of terror – a poem about the necessity of breaking that silence, but also about the trauma that comes when silence is broken. Maybe the film is a monument to silence – a reminder that although we want to move on, look away and think of other things, nothing will make whole what has been broken. Nothing will wake the dead. We must stop, acknowledge the lives destroyed, strain to listen to the silence that follows.« (Joshua Oppenheimer)

Joshua Oppenheimer
Born in Texas, USA, in 1974, Oppenheimer was educated at the prestigious universities of Harvard and the Central Saint Martins, London. For over a decade, he has focused on militias, death squads and their victims in his documentary films.

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