Balibo (2009)

49) Balibo (2009)

War correspondent Roger East and the young Jose Ramos-Horta travel to East Timor to investigate the murders of the Balibo Five in 1975.

9/10 – Starring and produced by Anthony Lapaglia (Without a Trace) and also produced by Dominic Purcell (Prison Break), this powerful film highlights another era of Indonesian brutality roughly 10 years later than the stories told within The Act of Killing.

What we are presented with is the facts with minimal bias, as Lapaglias character uncovers them for himself. While there is an obvious lean towards a focus on the Australians that went missing, it would be ignorant to say it did not focus enough on the people of East Timor too. The death toll was too staggering for each person to have a voice – instead we are presented with massacred villages and storms of Indonesian armies to display the sheer brutality they underwent. The story of the Australians is a vehicle to tell the bigger picture, much as they were trying to do.

Highly recommended.

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