Monday, March 15, 2010

Some Works of Director Michael Haneke

I could be wrong in my opinion that most of the general public who are interested in the Oscars are interested in a few categories, like best actor/actress/director, supporting actor/actress, and best film, so I thought I'd point out that a nominee for best foreign film and best cinematography is currently playing at the Art Theater. The White Ribbon (or Das Weisse Band, as it is a German film) tells the story of a village in which several accidents occur during the months that lead up to WWI, and the suspicions of the school teacher/narrator that the accidents are somehow connected. The story progresses slowly, as characters are introduced, accidents occur, and we learn more of the personalities of the characters. After the film ended, I frequently thought back to what evidence was presented for the film's conclusion, remembering other clues in this murky mystery.

I enjoyed the heck out of The White Ribbon, which made me curious about the other films by writer/director Michael Haneke, of which we own eight. I haven't seen any of them, but due to their descriptions, I don't plan to watch them back to back--they're all rather dark.

Of the titles we own, the following are definitely going on my to-watch list:

Funny Games (2007) and Funny Games: Ein Film (1997)
Both of these are horror films concerning the story of an affluent family psychologically tortured by some American-psycho types. Both are written and directed by Haneke, but the 2007 version is an English-language film starring Naomi Watts and Tim Roth, while the earlier German film stars Susanne Lothar and Ulrich Muhe.

Cache (Hidden)
A French-language thriller in which a couple is terrorized by increasingly personal videotapes left on their front porch.

Der Siebente Kontinent (The Seventh Continent)
A melodrama in which a family's monotonous existence is disrupted when daughter Eva feigns blindness in an attempt to get attention. In German.

I'll have to grab one of these soon in order to stave off this desire I have to go back and see The White Ribbon again. You can bet that when it becomes available, we'll be adding it to the library's DVD collection.

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