A cathartic experience in what you can and cannot see. This film points and laughs at you for expecting something to satisfy your sick bloodlust for violence in film. And, like a disappointed grandfather, Haneke smacks you upside the head for being so obtuse. The audience's inclusion in the carnage is unavoidable and leaves you with a dark feeling, leaving no satisfaction, and the last laugh goes straight to Haneke.
This violent critique of violence is one of the most suprising movies ever. Haneke delivers a screenplay that is sadistic and intelligent at the same degree and toys with our expectations every single moment. Arno Frisch has a tour-de-force performance with his alluring Paul, the immediate successor to Alex DeLarge. As the fourth wall is broken, we have to confront either our morals or our attraction towards him.
One of the more horrifying movies I've seen. Also one of the most frustrating but ultimately Haneke succeeds at making the audience the victim and indicting the viewer as part of the crime for watching it happen. I wouldn't say it is enjoyable, but it is definitely an interesting experience.
I still cannot understand how the great Michael Haneke could have made this dumb home-invasion film. See Haneke's greatest film, "The Piano Teacher", not this regurgitated American product. Are there 2 versions of this film? I saw the one with Michael Pitt. It was the pits.
Funny games indeed in this expose of audience complicity in depictions of violence. It’s a troubling work - no doubt the aim - and if taken as a play on expectation and convention (the assumed insatiable thirst for violation), then it’s a cold triumph. However one cannot help feeling Hanneke is preaching to the converted; his clinical modus exposed for the exercise it is and one feels patronised for the most part.
One of Haneke's most disturbing films and also (especially through Paul's commentaries addressing the audience) an intelligent reflection on our voyeurism. The dramaturgy is brilliant and some essential (and the cruelest) parts of the action happen in our minds.
When at the first scene the soundtrack drastically changes from classical music to psychedelic punk you get the feeling that you're about to watch something morbidly good. I wish I haven't watched the 2007 remake before so I could really feel the anxiety this movie deserves, but still thrilling from beginning to end, though.
The fact that this film is among the most disturbing I've ever seen despite having most violence occur off-screen is a testament to the strength of the performances and the talent of the filmmaker, but I have to wonder if there's a legitimate context. Yes, Haneke wants to re-sensitize the audience to violence, but is that enough to justify the brutal, depraved material on display here? I'll have to sleep on that one.