In 1984, British newspaper reporter Arthur Stuart is investigating the career of 1970s glam rock star Brian Slade, who was heavily influenced in his early years by American rock singer Curt... See full summary »
Jonathan Rhys Meyers,
Fausta is suffering from a rare disease called the Milk of Sorrow, which is transmitted through the breast milk of pregnant women who were abused or raped during or soon after pregnancy. ... See full summary »
Howard Spence (Sam Shepard) has seen better days. Once a big Western movie star, he now drowns his disgust for his selfish and failed life with alcohol, drugs and young women. If he were to... See full summary »
London-based Emily Wang gained minor notoriety from her VJ-ing on cable television. She is now more renowned for being the longtime girlfriend and pseudo manager of rock musician Lee Hauser... See full summary »
Erika Kohut is a pianist, teaching music. Schubert and Schumann are her forte, but she's not quite at concert level. She's approaching middle age, living with her mother who is domineering then submissive; Erika is a victim then combative. With her students she is severe. She visits a sex shop to watch DVDs; she walks a drive-in theater to stare at couples having sex. Walter is a self-assured student with some musical talent; he auditions for her class and is forthright in his attraction to her. She responds coldly then demands he let her lead. Next she changes the game with a letter, inviting him into her fantasies. How will he respond; how does sex have power over our other faculties? Written by
Isabelle Huppert really played the piano in the film. She had studied piano for 12 years. As preparation for her role as a piano teacher, she resumed practicing a year before the film was started. See more »
As with all Haneke films, make your own decision--don't be swayed by what you read and if you are interested in someone using the medium of film for their own unique ends, see it yourself. Isabelle Huppert is stunning in this film--combined with Haneke, these two never pull their punches. Haneke reels us in with the lure of golden boy, Benoit Magimel, but this is an anti-romance as much as Funny Games was an anti-thriller. You'll have to force yourself to watch much of it and the catharsis is much more in the range of sustained anxiety than any kind of emotional release but it's incredibly nervy and thought provoking; Haneke continues to hold up a mirror to how desensitised Western civilization is or has become. People may turn their noses up at this but it's only taking what Solondz did in Happiness a few steps further. While grounded in reality, much of what Erika (Huppert) does can be viewed as emotional metaphor. I'm not recommending it but I wouldn't dissuade you either...it definitely divides people but given it's largely about repression--that's no surprise.
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