Written by Takuji Ushiyama & Timo Tjahjanto
Directed by Kimo Stamboel & Timo Tjahjanto
What I found most interesting about “Killers” is the way the movie seems to ask its audience which of them is the better person. Is one of them less despicable than the other, even though both are essentially brutal, remorseless killers? Does the fact that one of them at least starts off killing criminals, a child molester and so on make him better then the guy who kills innocent woman? Aren’t both of them completely in the wrong?!?! I really liked this moral ambiguity, and how this movie explores to what extent we’re willing to sympathize with a killer. Whatever that says about me, I have to say that I hoped that Bayu would see the error of his ways sooner or later, and stop killing – even if that would mean that he would get away with the first couple of murders. I just really hoped that he’d relent before he crosses a line.
Not much love was lost between me and Nomura, though, who just seemed like a sadistic psychopath (even though he was still a fleshed-out, complex and fascinating character in his own right). However, I guess that was pretty much the point, and is central for the moral implications of the movie to work, which tries to make you root for the less despicable killer – who nevertheless still is a killer, for fuck’s sake. Ultimately, I found it fascinating and even a little disquieting to notice how I was kinda rooting for Bayu. So in that regard, the movie worked really great. It also was very well-shot and -acted. However, the showdown was a little typical and also quite predictable for me. As soon as I saw where the big, final confrontation took place, I pretty much knew already how it would end, and sure enough, I was right. Also, there’s this one scene where one of Nomuras potential victims actually wakes up and, with the help of another person, tries to escape – and both of them are too stupid to grab one of the many weapons lying around in his dungeon. That was just… no. Otherwise, though, this was a nifty little thriller.
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