This man won the top honours at Cannes

Michael Haneke
For a man who debuted with his first feature film at 47, Austrian Michael Haneke has done rather well for himself. His feature Amour has won him his second Cannes in three years, putting him in an elite club of only seven directors to have pulled off such a feat. His earlier Cannes Palme D’Or was for The White Ribbon, a black-and-white dazzler based on a feudal village in Germany on the eve of World War I. So deeply unpleasant are the goings-on in this village that it comes as no surprise that Nazism had to be borne out of such murky inner workings in a society. Amour, they say, is a more touching tale of an ageing couple coming to terms with their imminent death – this might be an aberration for a man whose filmography evokes more dread than warmth. And yet, there is something so razor-sharp about Haneke’s observations of society and of the humans in it that you can’t take your eyes off the screen. Yahoo! India Movies recommends this crash course for Michael Haneke beginners:

Weekend Day One: Cache
Cache
His film Cache, which also won top honours at film festivals across the world is about a French producer who starts receiving video tapes that merely takes long CCTV-style shots of his front door as seen from the street on which he lives. The producer and his wife try very hard to figure out who the culprit is – for along with the VHS tape comes yet another souvenir: an extremely violent drawing, ostensibly drawn by a child. Cache has the best rolling titles to conclude a film in cinematic history, but for that you need to invest in a gruelling two-hour ride that is addictive, vicious and redefines your relationship to the visual medium: are those tapes a parable for a society that has gotten so paranoid that it leaves a ‘cache’ of ghost images for every human who inhabits them? Are those tapes a hallucination? Yet, there is something murkier in the producer’s past. To find out, you need to watch Cache, and do not forget to check out the director’s interview in the special features.

Weekend Day Two: Funny Games
Funny Games
Yet another Haneke classic – if you are a horror film fan especially – is Funny Games, made not once, but twice by the guru (the latter was a Hollywood remake of his German-language original). It has the reputation for being so nasty that Wim Wenders walked out at its screening at Cannes in the late ‘90s. Despite some brickbats, Funny Games remains a classic of horror filmmaking, because Haneke chose to turn the lens back on the viewer – our innate impulse to watch people get maimed, bruised and killed on screen. An upper middle-class couple and their son take off for a weekend to their lakeside home, only to be brutally tortured by a duo of preppie psychopaths. The film has enough references to the fact that it is only a film – the psychopaths, for one, talk into the camera, addressing you every now and then. It only makes matters worse. The Hollywood version, starring Naomi Watts and Tim Roth, was less effective. However, it is the German version that truly stands apart for its commentary on how cinema is and can be an agency for our more sadistic leanings. Funny Games deconstructs the slasher flick  and turns it on its head. Thus, it has all the elements of a quintessential horror film: a lakeside house, a psychopath, an endangered house, the hope of escape. Yet, how Mr Haneke decides to toy with these and come out with an arthouse flick is remarkable and horrifying. For a less gruelling deconstruction of the horror genre, check out our review of The Cabin in The Woods, running at a theatre near you this weekend. It is said to be a game changer in the horror genre with a 90% approval rating on RottenTomatoes.

--

Did you know that you can get stories like this on the Yahoo mail app?
Download it here.

Yahoo Cricket

Latest News

  • Sotheby's features abstract art sale in NY Latam spring auctions
    Sotheby's features abstract art sale in NY Latam spring auctions

    Works of art by Colombian artist Fernando Botero, Cuban artist Wilfredo Lam and Mexican painter Rufino Tamayo are expected to be among the highlights of Sotheby's Latin American spring art auctions next week, which will also include a special sale of abstract art. Tamayo's "La Familia," which has been in his family and is fresh to the market, is expected to be the top lot of Sotheby's two-day sales on May 26 and 27 with a presale estimate of up to $1.6 million. "His work with sand, earth and …

  • TLC pulls '19 Kids and Counting' after molestation reports
    TLC pulls '19 Kids and Counting' after molestation reports

    By Daina Beth Solomon LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - U.S. cable network TLC said on Friday it has pulled all episodes of "19 Kids and Counting," its top-rated television reality show featuring a large Christian family, after reports surfaced that the eldest son had molested underage girls as a teen. Josh Duggar, 27, the son, issued an apology Thursday, acknowledging "wrongdoing," but did not directly address allegations reported by In Touch magazine and other websites. "We are deeply saddened and …

  • U.S. director's "Little Prince" gets French premiere at Cannes
    U.S. director's "Little Prince" gets French premiere at Cannes

    By Michael Roddy CANNES, France (Reuters) - The creators of the animated film "The Little Prince", which had its world premiere at the Cannes festival on Friday, knew they had to take extra care in adapting one of the most cherished works of 20th-century French literature for the screen. To that end, American director Mark Osborne ("The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie") has created a story within a story in which a Little Girl, voiced by Mackenzie Foy (the 10-year old Murph in "Interstellar") is …

  • Koons sculpture raises 12 million euros at Cannes AIDS auction
    Koons sculpture raises 12 million euros at Cannes AIDS auction

    A huge sculpture called "Coloring Book" by American artist Jeff Koons sold for 12 million euros ($13.2 million) at a star-studded charity auction near Cannes that raised more than 33 million euros for AIDS research. Sienna Miller, Jake Gyllenhaal, Diane Kruger, Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard were among the celebrities and millionaires at the annual amfAR "Cinema Against AIDS" event on Thursday night at the luxury Hotel de Cap-Eden-Roc in Antibes. At the gala, a highlight during the …

  • Rajkumar Hirani produces his sister's play

    Mumbai, May 22 (IANS) Filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani, who last directed the successful "PK" is now all set to produce his sister Anju Kishinchandani's play "Growing Up" based on puberty. Anju is quite excited to present her play in front of an audience. "When I first heard Anju's concept of the storyline, I was immediately hooked. …

  • Female "Assassin" tailored to actress, Cannes director says
    Female "Assassin" tailored to actress, Cannes director says

    By Mike Davidson CANNES, France (Reuters) - Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-Hsien said on Friday he had not started out wanting to make the lead character female in his film "Nie Yinniang" (The Assassin), but had tailored the role to suit his lead actress, Shu Qi. "I never thought of making a female assassin movie, but for me the choice of people is very important," Hou told Reuters in an interview. "When I look at the actor or actresses, I would think what sort of movie would suit them, and …

  • 'Indian Idol Junior' sets ball rolling with Bollywood music

    Mumbai, May 22 (IANS) "Indian Idol Junior" is back with more glamour quotient and young talent from all over India. The singing reality TV show was launched here with a blast from the past, with contestants paying tribute to some of the legends of music industry like Lata Mangeshkar, Kishore Kumar and Sonu Nigam. The children traced the journey of songs in the music world from 1950s era by crooning hit numbers "Aaiye meherbaan", "Aayega aane wala", "Mere sapno ki rani", "Ruki ruki thi …

  • Divyanka Tripathi intimidates her fans

    Mumbai, May 22 (IANS) Actress Divyanka Tripathi, who plays Ishita Bhalla in soap opera "Ye Hai Mohabbatein" left two of her fans intimidated. While hosting a segment at the Star Parivaar Awards with the 30-year-old, actor Shravan Reddy, who plays Neil in soap opera "Dosti...Yaariyan...Manmarzian" got frightened before he had to get on stage because he has a huge crush on her. "Being in one frame with Divyanka made me extremely nervous as she is a beautiful lady and an even better person at …

Loading...