Movie Theaters — June 8, 2012 at 1:13 am

“40 Years of Silence: An Indonesian Tragedy” Documentary Film Screening and Panel Discussion on June 11, 2012, Free and Open to the Public

Washington, DC – June 7, 2012 – “40 Years of Silence: An Indonesian Tragedy,” ( the poignant and startling documentary about the untold story of the mass killings of 500,000-1,000,000 suspected communists and leftist Indonesians when General Suharto’s New Order regime came to power, will screen free of cost at West End Cinema in the heart of Washington, DC’s West End neighborhood, June 11, 2012 at 7:00 PM. The film, directed by Robert Lemelson and edited by two-time Academy Award-winner Pietro Scala, will be followed by a panel discussion featuring the director and experts in human rights and Indonesian history. There is a no-cost registration at:

“40 Years of Silence: An Indonesian Tragedy” is an intimate portrait of four families who experienced and survived the 1965 slaughter, set within the context of historical events, human rights violations, a complex propaganda machine, religious conflict, and ongoing persecution that exists to this day. Breaking their silence publicly for the first time, the victims search for ways to deal with their personal trauma and with a tragedy that remains unacknowledged by their neighbors, their government and the world…until now.

The Indonesian government recently announced that in June 2012, its National Commission on Human Rights will release a long-gestating report that promises to include findings about the 1965 mass killing and pave the way for next steps. In anticipation of this document, the speakers will explore the full thrust of the events and the spiritual and psychological damage they have wrought, as well as their place among other modern day massacres around the world.

The panel will feature Dr. Lemelson, who is addition to directing, is adjunct professor, UCLA Dept. of Anthropology; asst. research anthropologist, Semel Institute of Neuroscience & Human Behavior, Center for Culture & Health; Gregory Stanton, President, Genocide Watch; research professor, Genocide Studies & Prevention, George Mason University and Gadis Arivia, founder, Jurnal Perempuan (The Women’s Journal); executive director, Indonesia International Center of Ethics (ICE); lecturer, Faculty of Humanities, University of Indonesia. Moderating will be Livia Iskandar, co-founder and member, Board of Directors for International Affairs, PULIH Center for Trauma Recovery and Psychosocial Empowerment Indonesia

“Forty Years of Silence” was shot over a ten-year period beginning in 1997 in the islands of Bali and Java with a crew that included top filmmakers from Hollywood and Indonesia.

Indonesia food will be available for purchase from food trucks at 6:00 PM, prior to the screening. The West End Cinema is located at 2301 M Street NY, Washington, DC 20036. Theater Entrance is on 23rd Street, next to United Bank and Bread & Chocolate and parking is available in the Circle Lot, 23rd Street between M and L Streets, NW and both. The theater is three blocks north of Foggy Bottom/GWU Metro stops on the Orange and Blue lines, and five blocks from the Dupont Circle stop on the Red line. The Circulator stops at 24th & M and 22nd and Pennsylvania and the N3, L1, and H1 buses all stop at 22nd and New Hampshire.

About Elemental Productions
Elemental Productions ( is a Los Angeles-based independent film company focusing on personal experience, culture and mental illness in Indonesia and the United States. “Afflictions: Culture & Mental Illness in Indonesia” is Elemental’s second release after “40 Years of Silence: An Indonesian Tragedy,” a feature-length film about the impact on four families of Indonesian President Suharto’s violent purge of suspected communists. Elemental was founded in 2007 by Dr. Lemelson, an adjunct professor in the University of California, Los Angeles’s (UCLA) Department of Anthropology and research anthropologist at UCLA’s internationally renowned Semel Institute of Neuroscience and Human Behavior in its Center for Culture and Health.

Media Contact:
Rochelle Winters
213 250-4603 (office)