Friday, 22 October 2010

Funny Games U.S. Review...

Funny Games U.S. is the 'English-language remake of a deconstruction in the way violence is portrayed in the media. A family settles into its vacation home, which happens to be the next stop for a pair of young, articulate, white-gloved serial killers on an excursion through the neighborhood. In this exploration of our violent society and how depictions of violence reflect and shape our culture, a middle-class family submits both physically and mentally to the torture, violence, and death foisted upon them by two young, unexpected, white-gloved visitors at their vacation retreat near a lake.'

I have to start by saying Funny Games is one of the emotionally tense and powerful films i've ever seen. I've seen many thrillers in my time, some good, some bad, but i don't think i've ever watched a film quite like this. From beginning to end my stomach was churning and i was extremely impressed with how well the film was made, not once resorting to a commercialised technique but sticking to its original arthouse style, duplicating its German counterpart shot by shot. Despite being taken over to the states due to its lack of success in Germany, Director Michael Haneke stood firm with this arthouse style and i must say it is a superb piece of filmmaking, as i watched the reaction and impact it had on everyone in the lecture theatre. At points during the film, the characters stop to almost taunt us and include us in their saddistic 'games', and just when the audience thinks it gets the ending it wants, or feels it deserves, Haneke takes it straight back from them. I'm definitely considering watching the German version and have already found myself recommending it to people. I was particularly impressed by the long static shots used in the second half of the film, as i found myself urging the film to press on which we see in so many commercial thrillers, but it continued to taunt me with its slow and steady pacing. Funny Games is definitely a film worth adding to my collection and it's not often i get to see films like these, often choosing to watch commercial films as my preferance, but Funny Games has reminded me how strong and powerful arthouse filmmaking can actually be.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Ethan, I'm pleased you 'enjoyed' this film - it's very uncompromising and it elicits such strong reactions - I'm sure some people hated me for making them witness it, but it's a very intelligent, difficult and maybe important film.