Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI[a] ([pəŋxiaˈnatan ˈɡe ˈtiɡa ˈpulʊh ˈɛs ˈpe ˈka ˈi]; Indonesian for Treachery of G30S/PKI) is a 1984 Indonesian propaganda docudrama written and directed by Arifin C. Noer, produced by G. Dwipayana, and starring Amoroso Katamsi, Umar Kayam, and Syubah Asa. Produced over a period of two years with a budget of Rp. 800 million, the film was sponsored by Suharto's New Order government. It was based on an official history of the 30 September Movement (Gerakan 30 September, or G30S) coup in 1965 written by Nugroho Notosusanto and Ismail Saleh, which depicted the coup as being orchestrated by the Communist Party of Indonesia (Partai Komunis Indonesia, or PKI).
The film depicts the period leading up to the coup and several days after it. In a time of economic turmoil, six generals are kidnapped and killed by the PKI and Air Force, purportedly to pre-empt a coup against President Sukarno. General Suharto destroys the coup and, afterwards urges the Indonesian populace to commemorate those killed and fight against all forms of communism. The film shows the G30S leadership as ruthless and planning "every move to the last detail", taking joy in using excessive violence and torturing the generals, depictions which have been read as portraying "the state's enemies as outside the realm of the human".
Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI was directed by Arifin C. Noer, a Citra Award-winning director with a background in theatre. He had previous experience in the genre, having made the war film Serangan Fajar (Dawn Attack; 1981), which emphasised Suharto's role in the National Revolution. Noer was assigned to work on the film by the state-owned National Film Production Company (Perum Produksi Film Negara, or PPFN), which maintained a degree of control over the production. Professors of Indonesian culture Krishna Sen and David T. Hill suggest that Noer's creative input was minimal. Instead, "for all intents and purposes" the film was the work of its producer, Brigadier-General Gufran Dwipayana, then the head of PPFN and a member of the presidential staff. However, Noer's wife Jajang C. Noer insists that he had remained independent while making the film.
The screenplay for Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI was based on a 1968 book by the military historian Nugroho Notosusanto and the investigator Ismail Saleh entitled The Coup Attempt of the 30 September Movement in Indonesia. The book, which was meant to counter foreign theories about the coup, detailed the 30 September Movement as the government viewed it. Only Notosusanto, the higher-ranking of the two authors, was credited for his contribution. In adapting the book Noer read much of the available literature (including court documents) and interviewed numerous eyewitnesses; Jajang, in a 1998 interview, said that her husband had not only read the official government version, but also the controversial Cornell Paper, which portrayed the coup as entirely an internal Army affair. During filming the crew emphasised realism, "paying great attention to detail" and using the generals' actual homes.
Production of Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI, originally titled Sejarah Orde Baru (History of the New Order), took nearly two years, spending four months in pre-production and a year and half in filming. It cost Rp. 800 million,[e] receiving funding from the government. Cinematography was handled by Hasan Basri, with music by Arifin's brother Embie C. Noer. Editing was done by Supandi. Parts of the film, particularly the final ten minutes, reused archival footage and newspaper clippings contemporaneous to the events.
Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI portrays the PKI and communism as inherently evil, with its followers "beyond redemption", while the G30S leadership are seen as cunning and ruthless, plotting "every move to the last detail". The historian Katherine McGregor finds this emphasised in the film's portrayal of the G30S leadership as gangsters, sitting in secret meetings amidst clouds of cigarette smoke. She considers an opening scene, where the PKI attacks an Islamic school, as likewise meant to show the "evil" nature of communists.
The PKI are portrayed as enjoying violence, with the film heavily featuring "eye-gouging women and decomposed, tortured bodies". The generals are kidnapped, and in several cases killed, in front of their families; later the captured generals are tortured while the communists dance around a bonfire. The sociologist Adrian Vickers suggests that the film's violence was meant to portray "the state's enemies as outside the realm of the human", similar to monsters in horror films.[f] Yoseph Yapi Taum of Sanata Dharma University notes that members of the leftist women's movement Gerwani are shown as part of a "crazy" Communist Party, dancing in the nude and cutting off the general's penises. However, Vickers considers these portrayals as ambiguous, suggesting that the New Order government was allowed a monopoly on violence. McGregor suggests that the violence in once-tranquil homes shows the "'destruction' of the family". Sen notes the violence belies a "representation of chaos before order" which is common in New Order films.
Before its commercial release, Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI was pre-screened in January 1984 for high-ranking military officers who had been involved in stopping the coup, including Suharto and Sarwo Edhie Wibowo. The film was released in December 1984, the first commercially released domestic feature film to deal with the events of 1965.[g] It was seen by 699,282 people in Jakarta by the end of 1984, a national record which remained unbroken for over a decade.[h] However, not all audiences attended of their own volition. The Indonesian sociologist Ariel Heryanto records students as being "required to pay" to see the film during school hours, a fact not reflected in contemporary records. A novelisation by popular writer Arswendo Atmowiloto likewise helped promote the film.
Dwipayana's influence ensured that contemporary reviews, especially synopses, repeated the government's position on the G30S coup. This is not to say all reviews were positive. Marselli of Kompas, for instance, found that Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI was highly detailed, with extensive work and quality acting going to represent events accurately. He felt, however, that the film felt too long and, as viewers knew instantly who the good and bad characters were, it became "nothing but a black-and-white portrait without any complex issues", which ignored the underlying problems which had sparked the G30S movement.[i]
Suharto, after viewing an early screening, stated that the story was unfinished and suggested that a sequel was necessary. Two sequels by PPFN, Operasi Trisula (Operation Trisula; 1987) and Djakarta 1966 (Jakarta 1966; 1988), followed. Operasi Trisula, directed by BZ Kadaryono, dealt with the extermination of G30S and PKI members in Blitar, East Java. Djakarta 1966, meanwhile, was directed by Noer and showed the lead-up to the signing of Supersemar on 11 March 1966, in which Sukarno gave Suharto authority to take whatever measures he "deemed necessary"; Kayam and Katamsi reprised their roles for the latter film, which won seven awards at the 1989 Bandung Film Festival.
Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI received seven nominations at the 1984 Indonesian Film Festival (Festival Film Indonesia, or FFI), including a Citra Award for Best Film, winning one Citra Award for Best Screenplay. It was beaten in four categories: for Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Leading Actor (Katamsi), and Best Musical Direction, by Sjumandjaja's Budak Nafsu (Slave to Passion), while Slamet Rahardjo's Ponirah Terpidana (Ponirah Convicted) took Best Artistic Direction. For the latter category, the nomination's recipient was Farraz Effendy. At the 1985 FFI Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI received an Antemas Award as the best-selling film of the preceding calendar year. The film scholar Thomas Barker suggests that the film's awards were, in part, a conjunction of state and FFI interests: both were focused on promoting a united national culture.
Beginning in 1984 the New Order government used Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI as a propaganda vehicle, showing it annually on 30 September. The film was broadcast by the state-owned network TVRI, and later on private television stations after they were established. It was also shown at schools and government institutions; students would be taken to open fields to view the film in a group. Because of this use, Sen and Hill suggest that Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI is the most-broadcast and most-watched Indonesian film of all time. A 2000 survey by the Indonesian magazine Tempo found 97 percent of the 1,101 students surveyed had seen the film; 87 percent of them had seen it more than once.
During the remainder of the 1980s and early 1990s the historical accuracy of Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI was little disputed, and the film became representative of canonical history; its version of the 1965 events was the only one allowed in open discourse. By the mid-1990s, however, anonymous Internet communities and small publications had begun questioning the film's contents; one online message, sent anonymously through a mailing list, asked "If only a small section of the PKI leadership and military agents knew about [the coup, as in the film], how is it that over a million people were killed and thousands of people who knew nothing had to be imprisoned, exiled, and lost their civil rights?" Heryanto suggests that this resulted from an unintended polyphony in the film, while Sen and Hill opine that Noer may have been aware of the government's intent for propaganda and thus made the film's political message "obviously contradictory". 2b1af7f3a8