AMOUR—French with English subtitles, written and directed by Michael Haneke/ Starring Jean-Louis Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva with Isabelle Huppert/127 mins/PG13
Bifocal Review written by Ageless1der, Barbara Rich and The Other Guy
(B) Let me say that this film is not a “feel good” movie. The story is very sad, but it is about a very real part of life. The story takes you through the daily mundane, heartbreaking experience of a man caring for his wife of many years, after a stroke disables her. I considered the boring parts (as the other guy puts it) a plus for the director. These mundane moments let you experience the lifeless part of the husband’s dedication to his wife. The husband, played by Jean-Louis in essence loses his contented life as well, after his wife’s stroke. The wife, played by Emmanuelle Riva, was extraordinary in this role. I can’t say enough about the performances of both Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva. I must give kudos to the director as well, for keeping this story so real. I don’t like leaving a film feeling sad, but much credit is due to a film that is so well made that you can’t look away, even from the sad parts. I give it three binoculars.
(OG) This is a film that is as difficult to review, as it was to watch. I don’t want to tell people that it is a bad film, or to avoid it in any way, though I would be much happier had I never seen it. The acting was incredible. The story, as presented, was very real. However, I would be lying if I didn’t say that it was also incredibly boring for me in parts, and that I came away from viewing the film with an overall, negative feeling. That reaction may well be based as much on my own personal experiences with the subject matter, as with the film itself, but that’s what a review should ultimately be…a personal statement about ones impression with the work of art. The acting was superb and I just had one moment of confusion, at the end, when it seemed as if there was a meager attempt at a philosophical statement of some sort, though I couldn’t say exactly what that statement was. Barbara was able to appreciate this film more than I; I give it only two binoculars. I think a film experience requires, at least an attempt by the cast and crew to entertain. She might say that that attempt was made, but I disagree.