Ed Johnson-Ott makes it clear in his review of Funny Games (Film, March 19-26) that he’s never even heard of Michael Haneke, which I find unsettling, because he’s supposed to be our local alternative film critic, and Haneke is one of the most intriguing and provocative filmmakers working today.
Granted, Funny Games, a remake of one of Haneke’s earlier movies, pales in comparison to his later works (Code Unknown, The Piano Teacher, Cache). But it still contains moments of brilliance, and Ed didn’t even offer an analysis — trenchant or otherwise — of how the film deals with audience complicity, which is its salient point.
Hey, Ed, ever heard of Bela Tarr? Jia Zhang-ke? The Dardenne brothers?
The world of top-shelf international filmmaking is a wondrous place — check it out!