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Tag: Michael Haneke (1-2 of 2)

The big change in the Best Director category: Actually, it's not about snubs

The Academy Awards wouldn’t be a tenth as much fun if they held no surprises. After the endless and expert prognosticating of a thousand media odds-makers, there’s virtually no such thing as an Oscar night without at least one medium-size upset. And by the time the nominations themselves are read aloud on Tuesday — now Thursday — morning, they have inevitably coughed up their share of dark-horse nods, out-of-the-blue eyebrow-raisers, and “snubs.” This morning, however, even when the smoke had cleared, the dust had settled, and the surprises had been dutifully digested, one category looked so different from what everyone thought it was going to look like that a lot of people simply couldn’t wrap their heads around it. READ FULL STORY

Cannes: Can 'Amour' really be a Michael Haneke film? It's a tenderly devastating portrait of old age

The Austrian director Michael Haneke is known for his creepouts (Caché), freakouts (Funny Games), and for the general air of dislocating disturbance that he imparts to almost everything his camera peers at. Amour (Love), his brilliant and haunting new movie, which premiered at Cannes this morning, has a moment early on that is very Haneke-ian. Georges (Jean-Louis Trintignant) and Anne (Emmanuelle Riva), an old French couple in their still-vital early 80s, are seated at their cozily cramped little breakfast table, talking about this and that, and just as Georges is about to crack open his soft-boiled egg, he looks over at his wife, and she’s sitting there with a vacant stare, registering nothing. Even when he waves his hand in front of her face, she’s completely impassive, a zombie-ghost whose spirit has left the room. A minute or two later, she returns to normal, but Haneke holds that frozen trance just long enough that even as we wonder what’s happening to her (we assume that it’s some sort of early Alzheimer’s moment), her disquieting stillness carries an invisible hint of something otherworldly. It’s Haneke’s version of a David Lynch moment, or a Stanley Kubrick Shining moment. It’s about the presence of something we can’t see. READ FULL STORY

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