Starring: Michael Haneke, Juliette Binoche, Isabelle Huppert
You may like this if you liked: The films of Micheal Haneke basically
An insightful documentary on Austrian auteur Micheal Haneke, showing interviews with the man himself, and showing behind the scenes footage of him filming scenes and directing actors on all of his films from Amour (2012) back to The Seventh Continent (1989).
Like all directors of the sort of films we get from Haneke, do not expect him to explain his films. I expect, like David Lynch, he refuses to do director’s commentaries because he respects the audience enough to make their own conclusions from his films. For anyone who is a fan of his unique brand of unflinching cinema (I most certainly am) this is compelling viewing. This is not the man explaining his films, but an insight into the man himself who it has to be said is quite a suitably enigmatic figure.
One of the most insightful and genuinely fascinating parts of this documentary are the behind the scenes footage of how he creates some of the scenes in his films. As a director who likes long takes the enthusiasm he shows when showing what he wants from his actors is compelling viewing.
When interviewed Haneke is as fascinating and enigmatic as his films, when saying “I don’t want to answer questions that make me interpret myself”, however when answering the more personal questions, his answers are fascinating and eloquent. Another interesting revelation that is shown from both behind the scenes footage and interviews with actors is how much fun there seems to be on set, despite the general tone of his films.
On a personal note, the audience interviews after seeing the premier of Funny Games (1997) was a highlight due to the huge variation in reactions.
This is essential viewing for Haneke fans, as it provides a genuinely fascinating and passionately made insight into a man that has produced some of the most unique cinematic experiences of the last twenty years.