Funny Games (2007) • USA • Michael Haneke

This is a shot for shot remake by the same director of the 1997 film. It's not quite as slimy or as creepy as the original, probably because I knew the story, Naomi Watts is too beautiful, and Michael Pitt's shorts aren't short enough.

Pitt and Brady Corbet do a stand up job, as good as the original duo, which is a pleasant surprise, but Roth and Watts, while good, don't seem as terrorizable as the original pair of vacationers. Maybe Tim Roth's resume precludes the requisite suspension of disbelief.

My vote is for the original and recommend it over this one unless you don't like subtitles. Both films are very good, but for American audiences I think it adds to the WTF? effect if the characters are unfamiliar. This version is definitely worth seeing if you don't want to go the subtitled route. The bad guys are a unique and surreal experience in terror.

As I wrote in my comment on the original, all the pretentious talk about "making a film that sends a clear message about violence, and the audience's view and involvement with violence on film" or "a deconstruction in the way violence is portrayed in the media" is (utter and complete) NONSENSE. Where does that kind of silly talk come from? Feed someone sugar and then berate them for liking it because it's sweet? There is nothing didactic or pedantic about this film. It is terror for terror's sake. Sweet.


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