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Funny Games (2008)



Average Rating: 5.6/10
Reviews Counted: 139
Fresh: 72 | Rotten: 67

Though made with great skill, Funny Games is nevertheless a sadistic exercise in chastising the audience.


Average Rating: 5/10
Critic Reviews: 39
Fresh: 16 | Rotten: 23

Though made with great skill, Funny Games is nevertheless a sadistic exercise in chastising the audience.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 30,118

My Rating

Movie Info

In this provocative and brutal thriller, a vacationing family gets an unexpected visit from two deeply disturbed young men. Their idyllic holiday turns nightmarish as they are subjected to unimaginable terrors and struggle to stay alive.


Mystery & Suspense

Michael Haneke

Jun 10, 2008


Warner Independent Pictures - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (139) | Top Critics (39) | Fresh (72) | Rotten (67) | DVD (6)

It's not a reassuring vision but that's not the name of Haneke's particular game.

April 6, 2008 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

That this relentless barrage of psychological and physical torture is extremely well made and powerfully performed -- Watts hurls herself into her physically demanding role with heroic conviction -- somehow makes it worse.

March 20, 2008 Full Review Source: Newsweek
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The fact that it features fine performances, talented direction and some moments of genuine suspense only makes the end product that much more grotesque and appalling.

March 17, 2008 | Comments (4)
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Haneke's assault on our fantasy lives is shallow, unimaginative, and glacially unengaged -- a sucker punch without the redeeming passion of punk.

March 17, 2008 Full Review Source: New York Magazine/Vulture
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic IconTop Critic

In addition to being borderline unendurable, Funny Games is inexplicable, and I don't mean in any philosophical sense. Who thought the world needed a shot-for-shot English-language version of Mr. Haneke's 1997 German-language film?

March 14, 2008 Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic IconTop Critic

While Haneke is attacking our culture for being drawn to violent fare, he is also relishing in presenting it to us, in prolonged and detailed fashion.

March 14, 2008 Full Review Source: USA Today | Comments (2)
USA Today
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For an audience that willingly hands over fistfuls of cash to see men and women savagely tortured in the name of entertainment, Funny Games U.S. is just the director giving the people what they want. Enjoy.

October 14, 2012 Full Review Source:

This new version adds nothing novel, but it lacks none of the original's bite.

September 12, 2008 Full Review Source: Time Out Sydney
Time Out Sydney

If you saw the original, the elements of suprise may be missing, but dread and suspense and nastiness are translated perfectly.

September 12, 2008 Full Review Source: MovieTime, ABC Radio National | Comments (2)
MovieTime, ABC Radio National

As an experiment in film form, Funny Games is intriguing, but the self-congratulation and post-modern trickery are at once irksome and intellectually and artistically dishonest.

September 12, 2008 Full Review Source: FILMINK (Australia)
FILMINK (Australia)

We're left with the nasty taste of our own bloodlust long after the credits have rolled.

September 12, 2008 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph (Australia)
Daily Telegraph (Australia)

Registers more strongly than the original as a film about privileged white people...

September 12, 2008 Full Review Source: The Age (Australia) | Comments (5)
The Age (Australia)

An actors' showcase and a hefty serving of director Michael Haneke's self indulgence

September 7, 2008 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

There is something far uglier and dirtier below the surface: voyeuristic sadism in which Haneke implicitly involves his audience

September 7, 2008 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile | Comments (2)
Urban Cinefile

It's a tawdry kind of horror movie plot, given new meaning by Haneke's considerable intellect.

September 5, 2008 Full Review Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Sydney Morning Herald

I'm not at all sure that, in manipulating the audience to make his points, Haneke isn't as guilty of exploitation as the filmmakers and the films he's attacking here.

September 5, 2008 Full Review Source: At the Movies (Australia) | Comment (1)
At the Movies (Australia)

The movie is unforgettable and will cause a reaction from you, whether you like it or not. Me? I liked it's sick, twisted sense of manipulating the audience

June 18, 2008 Full Review Source: Sin Magazine
Sin Magazine

Flogging the audience is one thing, but to deny them free will in their role - thus responsibility - is something else.

June 12, 2008 Full Review Source: Projection Booth | Comments (4)
Projection Booth

After several years of "torture porn" horror flicks, Funny Games sets the counter back to zero, reminding us that torture isn't fun, isn't stimulating, and isn't something we should be getting off on.

June 9, 2008 Full Review Source: Aisle Seat | Comments (4)
Aisle Seat

In Funny Games, Haneke seems content to ram his thumbs into our eyes and then ask us why we were foolish enough to get within arm's length of his gray, grizzled visage.

June 9, 2008 Full Review Source: Paste Magazine | Comments (2)
Paste Magazine

...a lurid piece of business, made all the more offensive for its apparent higher aspirations.

June 9, 2008 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis | Comment (1)
Movie Metropolis

toso idio me to prototypo, poy aksizei na to deis mono an den to%u0384hes dei, i an theleis na to ksanadeis

May 6, 2008 Full Review Source: Movies for the Masses | Comments (2)
Movies for the Masses

What's terrible and irritating about the film is that Haneke isn't doing it to tell a story. He just wants to punish us for wanting to see this movie in the first place.

May 1, 2008 Full Review Source: MSNBC | Comments (5)

This is a piece of art. The direction is amazing, the performances are top-notch, and the pot-boiling pace is pitch-perfect.

April 19, 2008 | Comments (2)

We want retribution, we want reparations, we want revenge, but Haneke refuses to submit to our pleas, because he's the storyteller, and he's the one playing the games...

April 14, 2008 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed | Comments (2)
Cinema Crazed

It's hard to imagine why anyone would want to subject themselves to the harrowing brutality of 'Funny Games,' but give German-born filmmaker Michael Haneke his due - his movie is shockingly effective.

April 9, 2008
San Francisco Examiner

Audience Reviews for Funny Games

Michael Haneke's 'Funny Games' is a work of existential nihilism that challenges the idea of 'Hollywood morals' and audience's complicity in acts of violence. The story sees two serial killers/ home invaders subject a family to a series of games in which humiliation is key and mercy is left behind. 'Funny Games' suffers from an undeserved sense of self-brilliance, the fourth wall is often broken as the killers question if viewers are enjoying/agreeing with what is happening on screen in a manner which assumes they don't,this is wrong. As the film progresses it becomes that which it criticizes, elevating itself to the enjoyable levels of 'torture porn' it desperately wants to parody.

The failings of the film's proposed ideologies is furthered by the moments the family being tortured are alone, which are boring and over-long, somewhat building excitement for their deaths. Despite all this 'Funny Games' is strengthened by convincing performances and a few experimental devices that separate it from the norm.

Overly heavy handed and boring, 'Funny Games' fails to reach the levels of greatness it's so sure it has and offers less than the torture films it grows to become.
June 7, 2013
Cameron Sherwell

Super Reviewer

Until this film, I don't think I had ever watched a shot-for-shot remake, let alone one made by the same filmmaker as the original. I mean, what's the point, exactly? Perhaps a wider appeal in America/the English-speaking world, which traditionally resists reading subtitles...?

Unfortunately, I don't really like Tim Roth, (he's no Ulrich Muhe, not even close), and after seeing the original, there's not much punch in the remake, nor even any subtle corrections to strengthen what was already there. I'll give it a decent rating, though, because other than the Roth vs. Muhe question, it's hard to find much difference. Personally, I'd watch the original, because it was made when it needed to made, when its point might have been strongest - plus, on that DVD, you get the interview with Haneke that's crucial to understanding just what the heck is going on, and why anyone would make a film like this. You'll get a chilling story whichever version you choose though, and one that ably points out how calmly we accept violence on film - and why, perhaps, we shouldn't.
August 11, 2012

Super Reviewer

Didn´t expect such a disappointement from Michael Haneke, whose most movies I admire.
Michael Pitt and Brady Corbet don´t convince.
Hitchcock´s "Rope" is much a better example of psychotic guys and cold murder.

May 11, 2012

Super Reviewer

Directed (and written) by Michael Haneke, Celluloid Dreams, 2008.

Starring: Naomi Watts, Tim Roth, Brady Corbet and Michael Pitt.

Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller

Question: Do you like it when a story is told in a unique and brilliant manner? Of course you do. How about when the story is about two young males who like to play mind games, torture and....oh wait, almost gave a little too much away. Well, I just finished watching Funny Games (the American version) and feeling a little guilty for liking this film.

I have to remain vague in this review. As you can see Funny Games is a thriller and a really good one. Trust me, you think you will know how the story ends, but the fact that this movie takes storytelling to a whole new level. And as a storyteller myself, especially about movies, I loved how this movie ended up playing its own mind games. Unfortunately, I felt a little sick to my stomach during and after watching Funny Games. Again, I can't say why.

Let's see, what can I tell you all about this film? First, it was remake of an 1997 Austrian film of the same name. Second, the director/writer Michael Haneke, directed both films - shot-for-shot. Although the actors used in each film were cast differently. Third, it is a very sadistic story...okay, did I just lose you all with that point?

Okay, here's the gist (somewhat): a well-to-do family drive to their summer home on Long Island for a relaxing weekend. They stop to say hello to some neighbors, who behave strangely but they continue on to their home all ready to start their vacation - golfing and boating. Their dog runs around gleefully saying hello to the mother, father and son. They unpack and prepare for the weekend; a neighbor stops by with a white-gloved "friend" and help put their boat in the water. This "friend" ends up staying and another white-gloved "friend" shows up asking to borrow 4 eggs for a neighbor.

From this point everything just starts to go wrong. So, so wrong. I mentioned something about torture and that is what the rest of the story is about. These two young men (white-gloved "friends"), who revel in the enjoyment of causing pain and suffering (mental and physical) to others, may end up being the most evil characters I have witnessed on screen in a long time. Actually Michael Pitt, one of the young fellows, is definitely the scariest characters ever and almost gave me nightmares with the final shot of the movie.

Now all this talk may not make you want you to run out and rent Funny Games; however, the method the director used to tell this story was nothing short of brilliant. It will make you feel sick to your stomach, although a lot of the violence is not really on screen. And some typical tricks with thrillers that you expect aren't used (sort of) and you almost end up begging for those tricks that usually end up making the story typical. See, mind games.

That's it - I can't say anymore.

My favorite part: The remote control, but then again, it should be my least favorite part. You'll see why.

Rating: R
Length: 111 minutes

Review: 7 out of 10
January 16, 2012
Tired of Previews
Tired of Previews

Super Reviewer

    1. Anna Farber: Why don't you just kill us?
    2. Peter: You shouldn't forget the importance of entertainment.
    – Submitted by Thomas R (2 years ago)
    1. Anna Farber: He only wants to have a game.
    2. Peter: Funny game.
    – Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)
    1. Paul: We're not up to feature film length yet.
    – Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)
View all quotes (3)

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