More than a year after its premiere at the 2014 Venice Film Festival, "The Look of Silence" is now making its way to a great number of nomination lists, including an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary Feature.
The film has been rewarded at the Gotham Awards and Cinema Eye Honors in New York and IDA Awards in Los Angeles, among the important events during the Awards Season culminating in the Oscars on 28 February. Directed by Copenhagen-based Joshua Oppenheimer and produced by Final Cut for Real, "The Look of Silence" is a companion piece to "The Act of Killing" from 2012. The film takes us once again to the Indonesian genocide of 1965-66, this time as seen through the eyes of a young optometrist, Adi Rukun, who seeks up the men who killed his brother. While testing their eyesight, he confronts them about their actions – that is in a society where the murderers remain in power.
Here is a record of the latest honours and prizes bestowed on "The Look of Silence":
First in the Awards Season
"The Look of Silence" took home the Best Documentary award at the 25th Gotham Independent Film Awards, the first honours of the film awards season, which were presented in New York City on 30 November.
Cinematography in Focus
The cinematographer behind "The Look of Silence," Lars Skree, was awarded at Camerimage, a festival in Bydgoszcz in northern Poland dedicated to the art of cinematography. Skree, who has a wide range of documentary films to his credit, scored the Golden Frog-Grand Prix in the feature-length documentary section for his work on Joshua Oppenheimer's film. Norwegian cinematographer Sturla Brandth Grøvlen, who is trained at the National Film School of Denmark, took home the Silver Frog in the main competition for Grímur Hákonarson's "Rams," Iceland's Foreign-language Oscar bid. The film is co-produced with Denmark and has reaped a string of awards since winning Un Certain Regard at Cannes.
A "Respected" Documentary Event
Again an important celebration of the Awards Season, the IDA Awards awarded "The Look of Silence" the Best Feature Award on 5 December at the Paramount Theater in Los Angeles. "In a crowded field, being signaled out by the respected IDA makes a difference," the online film magazine indieWIRE wrote about the IDA nominees having a good chance of moving forward in the Oscar race.
"The Look of Silence" won three awards at the Cinema Eye Honors on 13 January: Best film, best direction and best production (to producer Signe Byrge Sørensen).
"The Look of Silence" tied with Asif Kapadia’s "Amy" for Best Documentary at the International Press Academy's Satellite Awards in Los Angeles on 21 February.
The International Press Academy is among the largest entertainment press organizations in the world with U.S. and international journalists covering Film, Television and Interactive for media outlets worldwide.
Celebrating the Spirited Pioneers
The Film Independent Spirit Awards announced their nominations on 24 November, including "The Look of Silence" as one of six nominees for the Best Documentary category. The 31st edition of this celebration of independent filmmaking, with Todd Haynes' love story "Carol" scoring a leading six nominations, will be held on 27 February, the eve of the Academy Awards.
On January 14, "The Look of Silence" was nominated for an Oscar for Best documentary feature shortlist, announced on 1 December. Five finalists will be selected on 14 January. In 2014, "The Act of Killing" was nominated in the same category.
"The Look of Silence" is available on iTunes, where you can also find "The Act of Killing."
Published 24 November, revised 26 February 2016