Reviews

The White Ribbon

5

Haneke’s village of the damned…

Soaked in anguish, sexual humiliation, animal cruelty and death, Funny Games US was Michael Haneke’s attempt to reach a wider audience. It fell flat on its bloodied face.

Unsurprisingly, then, the austere Austrian auteur now returns with his most challenging film to date.

Not only is The White Ribbon soaked in anguish, sexual humiliation, animal cruelty and death, it’s shot in crisp black and white and set in a small village in northern Germany, 1913-1914.

Afraid? Don’t be: Haneke’s 11th feature is his biggest and boldest to date, his best too. And for all its formal, thematic precision – rigorous compositions, measured pacing, potent symbolism – it is, ostensibly, a taut and sinister whodunit.

Narrated by an old man recalling his days as the village schoolteacher, the story begins with a doctor crashing from his horse, felled by a tripwire. Then the baron’s barn is torched, his son flogged...

Who is responsible? It could be anyone, everyone: when moral guardians mete out sadistic punishments for the smallest transgressions yet themselves indulge in adultery and sexual abuse, who hasn’t got a reason to exact revenge?

Haneke is here in his element, applying meticulously controlled technique to heated hostilities. The coldness burns. The dialogue smarts. And the regulated violence – half-glimpsed, off-screen, unseen – devastates, a scalpel slash to the mind’s eye. But those who complain about the director’s cruelty and severity (“medicinal” shuddered Variety) are overlooking pockets of warmth and humour.

One subplot even offers a coy romance, while the ruminative voiceover and stark, shimmering visuals suggest dream and parable – lessons can be learned from this strange community cocooned in the mists of time and memory.

The White Ribbon finally won Haneke his Palme d’Or and marks the ascent of a major filmmaker to the rank of greatness.

Consciously classical, it boldly evokes the monumental Euro-classics of the ’50s and ’60s and refuses to wither in their shadow.

Verdict:

The sins of our fathers… Haneke demands full attention as a patriarchal community crumbles to the ground and the seeds of fascism are sown. A masterpiece.

Film Details

User Reviews

    • Taraw

      Nov 14th 2009, 1:12

      4

      Watch The Latest Movies Online FREE http://MoviesWatch.info - A Christmas Carol - This Is It(Michael Jackson Movie) - The Box - The Fourth kind - A Christmas Carol - The Men Who Stare At Goats - Saw VI - Paranormal Activity - Where The Wild Things Are - Couples Retreat - Law Abiding Citizen - Couples Retreat - Zombieland way more! http://movieswatch.info/

      Alert a moderator

    • u2010

      Oct 18th 2010, 14:07

      Share with you this website whom supply oakley sunglasses and ray ban sunglasses, you can get cheap oakley sunglasses, discount oakley sunglasses, cheap ray ban sunglasses and discount ray ban sunglasses from their website.

      Alert a moderator

    • scantool

      Dec 13th 2010, 20:24

      2

      auto scan tools who design the operating system car software

      Alert a moderator

    • Speakersystemm

      Feb 11th 2011, 2:53

      4

      I am delighted to find many useful things here, that's superb. Thanks for sharing wooden ships

      Alert a moderator

    • Speakersystemm

      Feb 12th 2011, 14:41

      4

      Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Pennsylvania Loan Modification

      Alert a moderator

    • Speakersystemm

      Feb 12th 2011, 14:42

      5

      Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Venetian Plaster Dallas

      Alert a moderator

    • smith234

      Feb 18th 2011, 5:16

      4

      I admire the valuable information you offer in your articles. I will bookmark your blog and have my children check up here often. I am quite sure they will learn lots of new stuff here than anybody else! Tulsa Lawyer

      Alert a moderator

    • evworld11223

      Feb 26th 2011, 2:20

      These kind of post are always inspiring and I prefer to read quality content so I happy to find many good point here in the post, writing is simply great, thank you for the post Los Angeles Weight Loss Challenge

      Alert a moderator

    • voonel33

      Mar 5th 2011, 1:17

      I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this post. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well. Discount Broadway Tickets

      Alert a moderator

Most Popular