The master of alternative cinema returns with the genocide-based documentary
In typical Werner Herzog fashion, the trailer for his new film, The Act of Killing - a joint effort between Herzog and Errol Morris with director Joshua Oppenheimer - is a strange, surreal cinematic portrayal of the side of human nature we barely get to see.
This time round, the filmakers main concentration is on Indonesian genocide of 1965, in particular the Anwar, who oversaw and handled many of the killings. Not exactly your standard Sunday afternoon viewing, but then again no Herzog film ever is. Oppenheimer's documentary has already caught critics attention and has left many applauding the effort, regardless of the gruesome subject matter and the gory detail the film goes into to portray the violence and horror of this relatively unknown piece of world history. The film challenges the former warlords, who are now seen as heroes by many in Indonesia, to recreate the heinous acts in any cinematic style they wish, including classic Hollywood film noir scenes and lavish musical numbers.
As Antwan mentions in the closing stages of the trailer; war crimes are determined by the winners, and regardless of the vile acts he and others performed during the 60's, it was they who emerged as victors and thus received no retribution for the events.
Although the documentary has been shopped around various film festivals - to great aplomb - the film is yet to see the light of day in cinemas, but that is to end this summer. The Act of Killing will get it's theatrical release (on a limited basis) on July 19th and 28 June in the United Kingdom.
Expect the usual unusual from Herzog's next movie