I don’t think I’m going to go see Michael Haneke’s new film, a scene-for-scene American recut of his 1997 French film "FUNNY GAMES". After an article about its remaking in the NY TIMES MAGAZINE last year, I was excited to see it – particularly because I enjoyed squirming my way through two of Haneke’s other recent films, “The Piano Teacher” and “Cache”. Then the poster you see here came out, and it’s one of the best movie posters I’ve ever seen. Something about the ravishing Naomi Watts' beautiful face streaked by tears makes for a truly disturbing – yet compelling - image. Then the reviews came out. The words “torture porn” started getting thrown around. And the more I looked into the plot, the more pissed off I got about what I was expecting to see. Brutal (if off-camera) violence, enacted in a slow, torture-heavy manner, against a family of innocents. A “highbrow ‘Hostel’”, they started calling it. I wish I could believe otherwise, but there’s nothing highbrow about the systematic butchery of innocents in gruesome detail, no matter how much of a statement the director is trying to make about our “complicity” while we watch it. How about not watching it? That’s my radical solution to not being complicit.
Anyone out there seen this film, or the original?