Fri 22 + Sat 23 + Sun 24 Dec
5:50 6:10 6:20
Following Caché and the 2013 Oscar-winning Amour,, the solipsistic hypocrisy of a privileged French dynasty is fertile ground for writer/director Michael Haneke. His preoccupations with dysfunctional relationships, surveillance and death - both a fear of and a longing for - all feature in this horrific comic drama.
In a magnificent mansion in Calais, Isabelle Huppert and Jean-Louis Trintignant respectively play the scheming matriarch and demented, suicidal patriarch of an haute-bourgeois family. Also of their party are a feckless son (Rogowski) being groomed to run the family firm he risks ruining through negligence, a shady English insurance broker (Toby Jones) and the thirteen-year-old malevolent Eve (Fantine Harduin), who forms a strange bond with her grandfather.
Outside in the city refugees wait their chance to get through the tunnel. An eerie and gripping parable for our anxious times.
Guardian, Peter Bradshaw - "a black comedy of pure sociopathy" and "The Austrian director returns to many of his classic themes in a stark, unforgiving and gripping satire on bourgeois Europeans and the people who serve them".
Financial Times, Raphael Abraham - "a vexing, perplexing and brilliant cinematic puzzle".