Film Review: AMOUR

Directed by Michael Haneke
Written by Michael Haneke
Starring Jean-Louis Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva and Isabelle Huppert

Georges (Trintignant) and Anne (Riva) are a long-married couple, now in their eighties. Retired music teachers, they live a pleasant if quiet life amidst their books, music, and each other. In a flash that changes when Anne is struck down by illness. An initially hopeful diagnosis goes wrong and the rest of the movie follows her path toward the inevitable. She saddles Georges with the promise that she will never be sent to a hospital or facility despite the pleas of their daughter, Eva (Huppert). Eva is a professional musician who weighs in on her mother’s situation from time to time without taking any responsibility for caring for her. This rings very true.

AMOUR is a nearly perfect movie. No false notes, no sentimentality. The acting is sublime. It looks death in the face fearlessly and death is what it’s about. If you need a break from the agony, you won’t find it here: no comic interludes, very little back story to break the mood. But if you can find pleasure in lives recreated flawlessly, if you can look death in the face with these characters, you will find great satisfaction in this gem. Highly recommended.


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