Georges and Anne are an octogenarian couple. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, also a musician, lives in Britain with her family. One day, Anne has a stroke, and the couple's bond of love is severely tested.
A European family who plan on escaping to Australia, seem caught up in their daily routine, only troubled by minor incidents. However, behind their apparent calm and repetitive existence, they are actually planning something sinister.
A 14-year-old video enthusiast is so caught up in film fantasy that he can no longer relate to the real world, to such an extent that he commits murder and records an on-camera confession for his parents.
Gradually succumbing to dementia, George Laurent, the octogenarian patriarch of the Laurents, an affluent upper-bourgeois family, is uncomfortably sharing his palatial manor in Calais, the heart of the infamous migrant jungle, with his twice-married son, Thomas, and Anne, his workaholic daughter who has taken over the family construction business. Divorced and frigid, Anne has to handle the impact of a disastrous workplace accident caused by her disappointing son Pierre's negligence, while at the same time, the urgent hospitalisation of Thomas' ex-wife from a mysterious poisoning, leads his sulky 13-year-old daughter, Ève, to live with her father and his new wife, Anais. Undoubtedly, in this family, everyone has a skeleton in the closet, and as the fates of the Laurents enmesh with insistent and ignoble desires, a peculiar and disturbing alliance will form. But in the end, some secrets are bigger than others.Written by
Happy End. The title says it all here - I was "Happy" when it came to an "End". Director/Writer Michael Haneke ("Amour" 2012) has a following that this first time viewer of his work doesn't get. With an opening that is long and doesn't make sense, a story line that is filled with so many sub-storylines that aren't fully established or supported, camera work that lingers way too long on various subjects, and subtitles that wiz by at times, the experience just isn't worth it. Set in the Calias, France estate of patriarch George Laurent (Jean-Louis Trintignant "Amour"), we find him fed up with his alcoholic daughter Anne (Isabelle Huppert "Elle" 2016) and her wondering son Pierre, his twice divorced son Thomas (Mathieu Kassovitz ""Amelie" 2001) and Thomas' introverted daughter Eve (Fantine Harduin "Fanny's Journey" 2016) who comes to live with him after her mother is hospitialized with self poisoning. If only George can end his life-I feel your pain George, I feel your pain! Along the way, we meet family lawyer Brashaw (Toby Jones "Tinker Tailor Solider Spy" 2011), who becomes one of the family during a very odd reception. Director Haneke may have a story here, but he's unable to keep the multiple storylines clear, and often the camera work is too close to the environment thus make it unclear as to where we are in the story and the various locations. Little Fantine Harduin at least makes the viewing experience somewhat interesting. Why more viewers didn't work out of this one, I'll never understand. This film was screened at the Palm Springs International Film Festival #PSIFF2018
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