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cacb3995's Movie Reviews (15)

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Happy End (2017) 
Haneke's Latest
3/4 stars

Some of you may be familir with Michael Haneke’s work. His films usually delve into the darkest corners of the human condition, the alienation and isolation of the modern world and the decadent and meaningless life style of the bourgeoise. Films like The White Ribbon (2009), Caché (2005) and The Piano Teacher (2001), all some of the finest work the medium has to offer this century, explore complex subjects and awfully detached humanity. Happy End, his latest feature, is no different. And although not quite as impressive as some of the director’s best works, it is still one of the best films this year so far.

The film explores the dynamics of a well to do family living in Calais, France on the landscape of the on going refugee crisis. The film stars Isabelle Huppert as Anne Laurent, a woman at the head of a construction company, Mathieu Kassovitz as her brother Thomas, who is having an affair with a cello player, Jean Louis Trintigant as Georges, the father of both of them, and Fantin Harduin as Eve, Thomas’ disturbed daughter who recently lost her mother. While the whole cast is really good (Toby Jones’ minor role being worth mention as well), the ones who really steal the show are Trintigant and Harduin, the chemistry between these two characters separated by generations but still very much out of place in the same way being what really propels the film to its most powerful moments. There are some surprisingly funny moments, Haneke’s ironic dark humor being top notch, and the way he employs modern technologies comes as a welcome surprise, considering how he uses it to greater effect than many much younger filmmakers today.

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