His Dark Materials
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I'm not adverse to slow films, but this is one that could have benefited from a few cuts. The last 3rd was enjoyable though, when things started to progress more rapidly. I often find Haneke's films leave me feeling a bit empty (which is not necessarily a bad thing), and this was no exception.
Michael Haneke has a way of making patience engaging and he does so to tremendous effect in The White Ribbon, painting a unflinchingly realistic portrait of a village tearing itself apart made all the more impactful by the incredible black and white cinematography.
The White Ribbon is an 2009 Historical Drama Written and Directed by Michael Haneke, one of the best foreign filmmakers. He wrote and directed films such as Caché, The Piano Teacher, and both the original and remake of Funny Games. The film follows how a strange event in a small Austrian village in 1913 can cause so much suffering to a few local families. The best thing Michael can do in his films are tone. Michael always uses almost to no musical scores to create this eerie silent atmosphere. There’s no use music to give the audience a moment of relief, or to remind them that what’s happening on the screen isn’t real. Like usual, the cast did a fantastic job and their characters were amazingly written. Michael knows how to direct his casts, and write fully fleshed characters. I could be wrong on the acting because the film is entirely spoken in German and I cannot fully tell if the cast is saying their lines at the right tone or pronouncing them right, so I mostly judge on their body language and facial expressions. The White Ribbon is another masterpiece from Michael Haneke, and it became one of my favorite foreign language films and it could even be one of the best I’ve seen.
Now this is a piece of cinema to contemplate about. Germany, the year 1913, pre-WW1, typical village, Baron, tenant-farmers, strict religious rules, oppressed children. It all sounds familiar yet it's very interesting to see the more objective point of view of a German-born director than to see another prejudiced non-German work about the Germans, who thinks he\she knows better.
Black and white photography, slow pace, frames, every aspect of this film gives you the feeling of a loveless, sterile society, in which violence rules, even if it does so in an imperceptible way most of the time.
The White Ribbon feels like a masterful novel brought to life through the powerful images of the tale it holds, as timeless and peculiar as it should be.
It's well worth watching, and has an ambiguous narrative that would reward re-watching. It's a bit of a hybrid beast, being some part period piece and almost some part horror or sci-fi. It sits in a strange world.
Seriously, this took a long time to fully appreciate. Not like a day or so, but almost two weeks. I guess I got so wrapped up in it's mystery that I couldn't get a word out. A film that explores depression, cruelty, and life's biggest mysteries. What we see is a mixture of the truth, lies or rumors. It ends on a cold note with nothing ever answered, and these nothing quite like it.
"The White Ribbon" is another masterpiece from the brilliant Michael Haneke. The grim atmosphere and the re-creation of the time period is it's own achievement. Haneke is the best living film making of this decade. He's one of the few filmmakers right now that creates such compelling stories and questions with no answers, but questions that many will be thinking long after it's over.
The performances from the children was both fantastic and natural. The childlike behavior and the little innocence felt real. And for someone who's a sucker for amazing cinematography, this movie has it. Every singe shot is framed so perfectly that you could easily take any shot from the film and make it as the poster.
This is one of those movies that you can find something new with repeat viewings. With such a powerful narrative that excels all my expectations.
Il film vorrebbe raccontare la Germania prima della guerra, mostrandoci come il popolo tedesco fosse culturalmente "propenso" ad abbracciare il nazismo (che doveva ancora nascere). Da un film con questa ambizione mi aspetto che sia molto realistico, invece mi pare che il film si prenda molte libertà in modo da poter associare alcuni aspetti proprio al nazismo (segnalare i riottosi con un nastro bianco, che dovrebbe simboleggiare la stella di David che veniva indossata dagli ebrei in epoca nazista). Inoltre mi pare che spesso si voglia far ricondurre la propensione al diventare nazisti alla sola voglia vendicativa e burbera dei paesani (spesso usano punizioni corporali sui bambini per educarli), il che mi pare un po' semplicistico. Infine è un film un po' noioso, e questo fa si che sia insufficiente.