Directed by: Michael Haneke
Written by: Michael Haneke (screenplay)
Starring: Jean-Louis Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva, Isabelle Huppert and William Shimmell
Michael Haneke’s latest film is a good poster child for why mainstream movie audiences fear and avoid many foreign films; it is quiet, slow and relentlessly depressing. After winning the Palme d’Or in 2009 for The White Ribbon, Haneke officially established himself as a “Cannes auteur,” a director whose latest work would forever and always have a place in the festival’s cannon.
Amour is wondrously, deliberately hopeless. Its depiction of an elderly woman’s slow, painful crawl toward death after suffering a series of strokes is not peppered with melodrama or any sort of dramatic flourish. Haneke seems to think this would make the situation too comfortable, too much like a movie. The goal of this film is to show the situation in as realistic light as possible, but from a removed distance.