One of the most praised documentaries of the year will be landing this summer, and it just got a pair of two of the most notable filmmakers in the genre to back it up. Executive produced by Werner Herzog and Errol Morris, the first trailer has now landed today for Joshua Oppenheimer‘s The Act of Killing, an unsettling look at death squad leaders who carried out countless murders — and then asked to reenact them.

We were major fans of the film at South By Southwest this year, as our review says it is “one of the most dark and emotionally deafening documentaries I’ve ever witnessed” and “there’s no easy way to comprehend The Act of Killing’s total impact and how affecting it truly is. This is darkness and pure evil explored, a look behind the proverbial curtain.” Check out the compelling U.S. trailer below and let us know your thoughts in the comments.


In this chilling and inventive documentary, executive produced by Errol Morris (The Fog of War) and Werner Herzog (Grizzly Man), the filmmakers examine a country where death squad leaders are celebrated as heroes, challenging them to reenact their real-life mass killings in the style of the American movies they love. The hallucinatory result is a cinematic fever dream, an unsettling journey deep into the imaginations of mass murderers and the shockingly banal regime of corruption and impunity they inhabit. Shaking audiences at the 2012 Toronto and Telluride Film Festivals, The Act of Killing is an unprecedented film and, according to the Los Angeles Times, “could well change how you view the documentary form.”

The Act of Killing opens on July 19th.

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