“Happy End”, an Equally Fitting Description to a Single Gal’s Evening

“Happy End” is dark, but not in a violent way, more akin to the relative darkness of a movie theater. Just as you can still see the goodness of even the most selfish characters in Michael Haneke‘s new film, I could still see the other movie goers around me. And I could certainly hear the movie goers around me as there were: knuckle crackers, Junior Mint box shakers, horn (nose) blowers and audible sighers. What would normally annoy the bleep out of me was zen-fully equalized by the fact that there were three other loners in the theater besides me. Hence, the movie plot, albeit dark (snobbery, adultery, poor parenting, poisoning, etc.) made me feel as normal as the demographics in the room.

Granted, I could hear more of my noisy neighbors since this film is super quiet, there is no sound track. The film opens with at least 3 to 5 minutes of silent snapchat screens and continues with equally hushed scenes of a woman on her laptop, a man wheeling himself down a city street, only the natural sound of keyboard typing and city street racket (respectively) bleeds through.

I really enjoyed Haneke’s Amour which he was Oscar nominated for both screenplay and best foreign film. Yet there was no way in hell I was ever going to see the sadistic Funny Games. Still, I have to hand it to Haneke for covering uncomfortable situations in Happy End without making me feel like I have to have a mind flush at the end of the film. In fact, the loner a seat away from me and I both laughed at the same time when we figured out the ending which true to my caption I will not spoil.

The acting was spot on. As much as I abhorred the fact that Isabelle Huppert won awards for that piece of dung film Elle, I guess I’ll chalk that up to what will now be retroactively referred to as the Jeff Bridges/Crazy Heart-Sam Rockwell/Three Billboards syndrome, where a great actor/actress gets an award for a junk film. And long aside now over, Huppert was fantastic as the female lead. Equally super were: Jean-Louis Trintignant, star of Amour (aside: my blood just boiled researching realizing he didn’t get a nomination for best actor, like you must be kidding me!), Mathieu Kassovitz, and Franz Rogowski (a dead ringer for Joaquin Phoenix).

Definitely worth the price of admission, though the any synopsis you read of ‘backdrop of refugee crises’ is a bit misleading (percentage-wise only 20% of the film’s focus).

French Movie: misogyne….for shame “Elle”

If my blog could be a live feed, which I’m sure might be possible on Facebook (which I loathe, which I consult begrudgingly once a week), we would learn together the name and sex of the writer and director of “Elle”, possibly the worst movie I’ve seen in years.

So here we go. I did not look at specifics beforehand and was a little too wind blown and distracted from my walk to ‘le cinema’ that I didn’t have the presence to memorize credits….drum roll….

First in our twitchy internet age, let me interrupt this search with a distraction just now: Rotten Tomatoes popped up, and can you believe the host of idiotic critics that scored this as an 89%? May I quote McEnroe here and say, “You’ve GOT to be kidding me!”

So, ok, thanks to IMDB, three dudes wrote this, and I justify using the pejorative dudes because this movie was extremely misogynistic. And the fact that Isabelle Huppert won an award for this film really frosts my onions, or as her character might suggest, ‘hit me again lover!’

The plot of this film is so overdone with stupid detail, combined with Huppert’s ‘protagonist, or should I say ‘masochist’, making THE most stupid decisions since the last horror flick you saw when some ditzy millenial says, “I’ll be right back, just let me check the basement”.

What I gleaned from this: video games lead to violent behavior, video games lead to callous women who delve way into s&m, major bi-polar issues are cleared up overnight with a windfall of insurance money, friendships can be repaired after adultery by suggesting cohabitation. I shake my head and wonder, are French people this cruel and cavalier?