Exclusive: Funny Games' Guide to Home Invasion

An instructional from the film's psychotic door-to-door intruders.

It takes a daring filmmaker to remake his own movie, but Michael Haneke (Cache) is up for the challenge. The Austrian director, who made waves with the original Funny Games a decade ago, now brings us an English-language version of his own film -- remade shot-for-shot, a cineaste's delight! Naomi Watts and Tim Roth star as the unsuspecting couple whose vacation turns deadly when two strangers (Brady Corbet and Michael Pitt) trap them and their young son in their own home, playing sadistic games with their lives.

Mistake #1: Don't answer the door.

Haneke's original film garnered critical acclaim for its brutal cleverness -- a compelling meditation on the nature of violence and voyeurism, breaking the conventions of filmmaking and storytelling left and right. And yet (spoiler alert!) it revealed little on-screen violence, assigning the viewer instead with the task of conjuring violent images in the mind. For added film school extra credit, the mindful moviegoer will notice the use of direct address; when's the last time a horror movie villain asked the audience if they want the good guys to win?

For his English-language Games, Haneke has selected a spot-on cast; Naomi Watts plays Anne, a wife and mother at the mercy of two killers (whose tearful desperation already makes for one of the year's best posters), Tim Roth is Anne's husband, George, and Devon Gearheart is their young son, Georgie. As the two impossibly polite killers, Brady Corbet (24) and Michael Pitt (Murder By Numbers, Hedwig and the Angry Inch) exude a detached intensity that are instantly off-putting. Pitt, always excellent in outsider roles, imparts a particularly menacing glee as the leader of the warped duo.

Mistake #2: Never leave the golf clubs out.

Warner Independent has shared with us their User's Guide to Home Invasion -- a twisted checklist of how to invade homes the right way, from the perspective of its two perverse trespassers. **EDITOR'S NOTE: Rotten Tomatoes does not endorse the practice of home invasion, torture, or violence of any kind. As if we had to say it. **

For two more clips and the official trailer from Funny Games, check out our trailer page here! Look for Funny Games in theaters March 14.



brett j-m

I am a huge fan of both the original film and Naomi Watts. Hopefully this won't disappoint. I'm glad he's made an english version of the film and releasing it to a wider audience. Maybe now people will understand his true intentions behind Funny Games.

Feb 20 - 07:37 PM


Miranda Johanning

wow, this looks insanely creepy, and really almost funny.

Feb 21 - 05:38 AM


Greg Guro

The foreign version is tied with Alexander:Director's Cut as my most hated movie.

This movie will likely strike a chord with most people. Many will violently hate it. Others may appreciate it if they have a distance from the characters.


The thing with the remote control is one of the lamest devices ever in a film.

Feb 21 - 07:30 AM


Dominic Iseli-Smith

I respect Haneke as an immensely talented filmmaker. I've seen La Pianiste, Cache, and Funny Games and have been genuinely impressed and unsettled by all three. What I don't understand is how anyone can enjoy his films. I'll see this, grudgingly, for the cast.

Feb 21 - 08:53 AM


Tyler D

We had an incident here where this happened to a nice family. This is art imitating life.
And Bam and Bran DiCamillo had a better "How to Rob a House Guide" on CKY4

Feb 21 - 01:01 PM


Melinda Smith

Haneke's films are art of the highest form. This may be the only time I'm alright with a film being re-made.

Feb 21 - 05:10 PM


Robert Morason

I saw this movie at a midnight showing at the Sundance Festival. I wish I hadn't.

I have never before had such a visceral feeling of disgust for a film than I did watching Funny Games.

This film is appears to be some type of ill-conceived, pseudo-intellectual commentary on the numbing of movie audiences to on-screen violence. I've seen this argument made on various boards by people who support the film, and I couldn't disagree more. This hypocrital justification falls flat when one considers the violent nature of this film itself. Maybe Haeneke 'wuvs' us; maybe he really hates film violence; maybe he just wants to wake us up from our 'enjoyment' of violence in films.

I seriously doubt it.

This director truly has a taste for violence, torture, and emotional abuse. The characters suffer pointlessly (as does the audience) and there is no reprieve for the entire run-time. Even the soundtrack of obnoxious grunge metal is designed to grate on the audience. This film wants you to hate it and it succeeds. At least it did for me.

Most audiences understand that violence is bad. We may enjoy movies with violence, but we understand that real violence is not a good thing. I don't need a sadistic filmmaker to preach to me on the subject. Not to sound violent, but I hope this film dies a quick death in theaters.

PS 2 Produceres and the two lead actors were at the showing I attended. They came on stage before the film, and contrary to common practice at Sundance, they did not stay for Q&A. I suspect they gauged the audience reaction and thought better of the Q&A. So basically they dumped this steaming pile of garbage on us and didn't have the guts to stick around and answer for it. Cowards.

Feb 21 - 06:39 PM


Edgar Gonzalez

I agree with you. I saw the trailer and I must admit I was slightly intrigued, but after reading up on the movie and finding out how the movie plays out and ends, I must say that I am also disgusted. I don't see what lesson this movie can teach about violence. It's nothing but the glorification of emotional torture and abuse.

Feb 21 - 07:13 PM


Edgar Gonzalez

I agree with you. I saw the trailer and I must admit I was slightly intrigued, but after reading up on the movie and finding out how the movie plays out and ends, I must say that I am also disgusted. I don't see what lesson this movie can teach about violence. It's nothing but the glorification of emotional torture and abuse.

Feb 21 - 07:13 PM


Joanna Cohen

I only recently recovered from the original. It was a film that shook me to the core when I watched it and then continued to haunt me years later. I reckon I am due for another few years of therapy.

I am fascinated that he is remaking it and can't wait to see if it maintains the intensity.

Feb 21 - 09:52 PM


Fritz Klein

With films like this I sometimes wonder if they should really be put into people's heads.
There ARE sociopaths out there - and while the film may not make them sociopaths, they may still find inspiration.
That being said, the film is definitely a phenomenon.
It is completely hard to watch and makes you feel very agressive against the film maker, all because of our connection to the characters in the film for which we feel, which are tortured beyond belief.
So in some way, this film twists your arm of emphatic connection until it breaks, and all in a seemingly idyllic setting full of polite surfaces.
To me, (I am from Germany) it's an Austrian film at heart - I wonder how it will work with American audiences who come from a completely different standpoint.
You have to give it to Haneke - it certainly is an acheivement to make a film this nasty without causing anyone to laugh for any other reason than pure cynicism.
I still hate this film a lot - I think it is sado-maso art-crap.

Mar 6 - 06:15 PM


Danon Tegarty

Mainstream Society Does not Accept These Types of movies. That fact that it straps you down and spoon feeds you violence. This isn't fantasy this is how life is and you can't always escape reality.

This Movie is Very Good and worth a Watch.

Mar 13 - 08:46 PM


Alfonso Estrada

I haven't seen the movie yet but, the trailer screams out "A Clockwork Orange". . .to me and my girlfriend anyway. . .

Mar 15 - 10:20 AM


Ingrid Oliansky

Stalenosebleed, what world are you living in? In what reality known to human beings can a man reverse events by using a remote control? Yes, there is the reality that there are sociopaths in the world and people perpetrate terrible violence against one another but if this movie were actually depicting life as we know it, when Ann killed Tommy, he would have stayed dead. Sorry but that would be the reality one can't escape.

I am torn because I found the film deeply disturbing yet could not take my eyes off of it. But I felt that an explanation was needed for the whole remote control bit. It seems to me to point to Paul not being an accurate depiction of a human sociopath at all but rather something other than a human being at all altogether.

I felt that much was lacking in terms of why and how these two were doing what they were doing and getting away with it. What was their connection to one another? It seemed to me that at the end of the film Paul had killed Tommy on the boat and was now working completely alone.

There were just so many things left unexplained that the movie is somewhat unsatisfying. But definitely do not agree that mainstream society didn't flock to this because they couldn't handle the reality of it.

Sep 1 - 11:23 PM

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