Slow, slow journey into heart of darkness
OPENS OCTOBER 17, CERT 15, 113 MINS
Austrian auteur Michael Haneke is known for broaching taboos and shattering barriers, but the only thing this indulgent bore will demolish is your patience. In successes like Funny Games and The Piano Teacher (Isabelle Huppert again stars here), he juggled narrative conventions, forcing us to question our tastes for cinematic sex and violence. Here he drowns us in his ‘visionary’ ego and asks if we can stay awake.
The premise is fascinating, the execution flat. The apocalypse has happened, and people scrap in the dark for food. Wanton violence abounds: in a startling opening, Huppert’s husband is killed by strangers. From then on, she struggles to protect her kids, looking for shelter and safety. The film’s shot in near darkness; you’re literally straining to see what’s going on. Not much is.
When she meets other survivors (B