LetterboxD review link

Film Forum in the village is playing a Michael Haneke retrospective, where I caught Caché, which I had never seen. It is now the latest addition to my growing list of Michael Haneke films I’ve seen and found to be almost flawless. Amour is at the top of that list, mostly because it was the first of his films I saw.

Haneke, perhaps more than any other working director, is a whatever-comes-after-postmodern director. His films, the stories he wants to tell, craft drama into the internal lives of the characters. Institutons like family are in focus, yes. And perhaps also global phenomena like surveillance and post-colonial guilt. But the drama doesn’t come from the exploration of these insitutions but from how people feel as individual actors in these contexts. The protagonists in this film are subject to something rather simply described as a disturbance in their otherwise routine, middle class or upper-middle class lives. The paranoia that serves as the animating concept for this entire story is something entirely contemporary. This is all to say, Haneke may be the best working director at grafting political or social phenomenon onto the psychological conflicts of individual characters. In so doing, he achieves success as a story teller, whose jobs (one could argue) is to describe and explore the universal through the specific.

If you need me, I’ll be back at the Film Forum this weekend exploring more of Haneke’s filmography.