September 18, 2012 at 5:32 pm #69699
Could find a previous thread for this, and since it is a serious contender for perhaps nine nominations, thought I’d start one.
Just saw it – here is my take
BP – Very likely nominee. It will be out early enough, it looks to be Sony Classics main shot in this category, there are many European members, and its story of an elderly couple will resonate. Very unlikely winner
Best Actor – Solid shot at nomination for Jean-Louis Trintignant. Honorary Oscar meriting career, terrific performance. Chances for winning not great, but would be boosted by major critics’ group wins.
Best Actress – Solid shot at nomination for Emmanuelle Riva – radiant, then painful performance, on the mark throughout. Chances for winning not great, but again major critics’ wins might change that. Might be more likely than Cotillard among the two SPC French films.
Best Supporting Actress – Isabelle Huppert – not in it a lot, but a couple of great scenes, and she has had a great career
Best Director – Michael Haneke, quite likely nominee, long shot winner, but if other nominees have won before and closely divided race, possible
Best Original Screenplay – Near certain nominee, possible winnner
Best Cinematography – Europe’s top DP these days, worked for many major directors (including Americans), previous nominee, shot Woody Allen’s last 2 films. Mainly interior works against it, but lots of Europeans in the branch, so competetive but not leading contender. No chance of winning.
Best Film Editing – Very smartly edited, but long shot
Best Foreign Language Film – Likely nominee, possible winner
That in Tom’s pundit wrapup only one person lists this as a leading contender to me is a major mistake. I would be surprised if it’s not a BP nominee.September 18, 2012 at 6:15 pm #69701
Awesome! I’ve seen the trailer and I’m excited to see the film. I have it in for BP, actor, actress, director, and screenplay at the moment. When will it be released in the States?September 18, 2012 at 6:19 pm #69702
It opens in Nov around Thanksgiving in NY/LA, other big cities by Xmas, I assume a slow rolloutSeptember 19, 2012 at 12:55 am #69703
It will be at the Vancouver International Film Festival in a few weeks; this and The Sessions will probably be the ones that I see there.September 19, 2012 at 1:03 am #69704
I saw this a couple of months ago and think it has a good shot at a number of nominations:
Actor – I think Trintignant will make the final five at the expense of one of the actors that people are currently predicting. Don’t know who it will be but doubt it will either Hawkes or Phoneix who appear to be virtual locks. Maybe I’m thinking this only because it would seem so odd for Emmanuelle Riva to receive a well deserved nomination and Trintignant not.
Foreign Language Film – With the annoucement today of the French entry The Intouchables, Amour is now not the lock I thought it would be for a win in this category but still the most likely winner.September 19, 2012 at 4:18 pm #69705
I imagine Intouchables will make the final 9, problematic that it makes the final 5, wins only if the other films are both very heavy and quite good and it is the “fun” alternative.December 18, 2012 at 9:35 pm #69706
The GD glitches prevented me from starting posting reviews, but I’ll go now. It opens tomorrow (Weds) in NY/LA, and trails only Zero Dark 30 as the best reviewed film of the year. The current Metacritic score is 92.
By MANOHLA DARGIS
Published: December 18, 2012
A masterpiece about life, death and everything in
Haneke’s “Amour” takes a long, hard, tender look at an elderly French
couple, Georges and Anne — played by two titans of French cinema, Jean-Louis
Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva — in their final days. Set in contemporary
Paris, it begins with the couple’s front door being breached by a group of
firemen. One moves through the rooms, delicately raising a hand to his nose
before throwing open several large windows. He may be trying to erase the smell
that probably brought the firemen there in the first place and which has
transformed this light, graceful, enviable apartment into a crypt.
More About This Movie
York Times Review
- Cast, Credits
- Trailers &
Haneke Directs ‘Amour’
By LARRY ROHTER
Michael Haneke’s new film, “Amour,” winner of the Palme d’Or at
Cannes, stars Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva as a loving aging
couple facing infirmity.
Did I mention this is a love story? It is, as well as a
mystery of a type that, like some classic films noir and detective stories,
reveals its secrets by rewinding to a past moment and then moving forward in
time to return to the present. It opens with Georges and Anne, former music
teachers, watching a concert by one of her prized students, the noted young
pianist Alexandre Tharaud (as himself). Afterward they greet him
backstage — Mr. Tharaud slices through a swarm of admirers to kiss her — and
return home, an interlude set to his performance of Schubert’s
Impromptu (Op. 90, No. 1), a type of music that’s called a character piece and
is meant to convey a mood or idea.
The music helps set an air of soothing, restrained
elegance as does Mr. Haneke’s meticulous compositions, his impeccable, steady
framing and harmoniously arranged people and objects. Everything seems just so,
just right, creating a sense of order that carries through until the couple
reach their apartment and discover that the lock on their front door is broken.
Someone apparently has tried to break in, a would-be intrusion that sends a
shudder through the movie and down your spine. That’s because it echoes the
first image of the firemen bursting into the apartment and because you never
know what shocks, what brutality, Mr. Haneke — whose films include “The
White Ribbon” and “Caché” as
well as the Austrian version of “Funny Games” and its American redo — will let
There is a jolt of violence in “Amour,” never fear (or
do!). Nothing, though, seems amiss the next morning while Georges and Anne eat
breakfast in a corner of their kitchen, talking amid the clatter of dishes and
cutlery. He notices that the salt shaker is empty and rises to refill it, and he
continues to chatter unaware that Anne has frozen in her chair, as if turned to
stone. Perplexed, he waves a hand in front of her seemingly unseeing eyes. After
a few beats, he dresses, presumably to get a doctor, but, as abruptly, Anne
seems to return to normal. She scolds him gently — she doesn’t remember what
just happened — and then she pours the tea and misses her cup.
By the time you next see them together, Anne in a
wheelchair. She has had an operation for a carotid artery obstruction and while
the procedure has a high success rate, she has drawn a fatal short straw. “It’s
all terribly exciting,” a visibly unexcited, deadpan Georges explains to their
daughter, Eva (a fantastic Isabelle
Huppert). Wildly self-centered, Eva asks about the operation only after she
natters on about her work (she’s a musician), her husband and children. She may
be embarrassed or unsettled by her mother’s illness, but when Eva asks what she
can do, her words sound hollow. “We’ve always coped, your mother and I,” Georges
says, maybe to reassure himself as much as a daughter who can feel like a
A grace note of the movie is that the distance between
Eva and her parents, an alienation that adds an edge into her voice when she
talks to Georges and he to her, is never explained. Mr. Haneke doesn’t put his
characters on the couch, offering up personalities that can be easily scanned
and compartmentalized. As a consequence, his characters can be difficult to get
a handle on, opaque, which might be frustrating if there wasn’t so much meaning
packed into their everyday conversations and gestures, including what they leave
unsaid. Early on, for instance, Anne teases Georges — at least she seems to be
teasing — by calling him a monster. She doesn’t explain herself and neither does
Mr. Haneke, which allows her meaning to reverberate, to grow steadily louder
until it booms.
After Anne returns home, she gradually goes from bad to
worse. Georges tries to care for her by himself, but, in time, is forced to hire
nurses. The inevitable is, well, inevitable. But in this movie it is also
consistently surprising because of the clarity of Mr. Haneke’s vision. There is
a great deal that is difficult to watch here, the indignities of a debilitating
illness included, and the equally harsh pain of witnessing a great love, a
longtime companion, slowly fade away. The moving, subtly brilliant performances
of Ms. Riva (best known for “Hiroshima Mon Amour”) and Mr. Trintignant (“A Man
and a Woman”) are a particular gift in this respect. The two are, after all, at
once forever young, immortalized in their films, and as familiar to us as our
The representation of pain can be rightly difficult to
watch, yet all too often also meaningless. But “Amour,” despite its agonizing
subject, holds you willingly throughout. A key to understanding why comes at the
beginning, when you see Georges and Anne at the concert, tucked in the audience
that’s facing forward as if it were looking at the camera or, disconcertingly,
us. It’s hard to see them, but they’re there, somewhat center and to the left,
waiting and then clapping. It’s curious, this impression that the characters
you’re watching are in turn watching and even applauding you. The moment can be
characterized as an instance of Brechtian estrangement, which is meant to break
the effects of illusion and awaken an attitude of criticism in the audience.
More simply, the theater audience directly mirrors the movie audience, eroding
the nominal distance between them.
This erosion of distance actually strengthens the
film’s emotional power. Viewers acquainted with Mr. Haneke’s work may find
“Amour” too cold, cruel even, and its depiction of suffering a punishing,
familiar gesture from a director who’s long been interested in transforming
spectators from simple consumers into critical thinkers. There are certainly
arguments to be made about whether movie-watching is ever simple or noncritical.
Yet there’s another point to be made here, namely that all the violence in
“Amour” is crucial to Mr. Haneke’s rigorous, liberatingly unsentimental
worldview, one that gazes on death with the same benevolent equanimity as life.
All of which is to say: bring hankies. This is a film that will make you weep
not only because life ends but also because it blooms.December 19, 2012 at 11:05 am #69707
I liked the film. Didn’t love it but really liked it (maybe I will love it when I’ll be older and more experienced). I can appreciate it even more as the portrayal of central characters wasn’t very far from my own grandparents and their illnesses. IDK about the ending, I’d like to discuss it in some thread when I won’t have to be afraid of spoiling the film for anyone. And for the record Trintignant was my MVP. I know that Riva had easier as the competition among female roles is much less heated but he was even better.December 19, 2012 at 11:20 am #69708
The issue I am hearing increasingly is that Academy members over 70 are very unsettled by the film and feel very uncomfortable about it, which clearly could have an impact on its Oscar future. The resistance is far stronger than I anticipated, but then I’m not exactly that age group yet.December 20, 2012 at 9:09 am #69709
Part of my problem with those previous films is that [Michael Haneke] is merciless in his technique but also generally heartless in his storytelling. What makes his latest film, Amour, as outstanding as it is is that he is once again merciless, but this time he is also full of compassion. Because he pulls no punches, it’s an emotionally grueling film to watch, but it is also deeply rewarding.December 20, 2012 at 1:07 pm #69710
I adored it.
My favourite film of the year by far.
Riva is AMAZING!!!December 20, 2012 at 1:23 pm #69711
I sort of have a 7-way tie for first, Amour is one of them; and Riva is my favorite performance overallDecember 20, 2012 at 1:40 pm #69712
I sort of have a 7-way tie for first, Amour is one of them; and Riva is my favorite performance overall
I’ve been slow to watch films this year, so I’ve probably seen far fewer than you have, but I wish I’d seen six other films as good as this one. This is in my #1 slot. “Zero Dark Thirty” and “The Deep Blue Sea” are close behind.
What are your other six?December 20, 2012 at 1:45 pm #69713
as of now (have Tabu and Looper yet to see among conceivable entries), in rough order as of now – ZD20, Kid With a Bike, Amour, Flight, The Master, Once Upon a time in Anatolia, Holy Motors, Barbara, Deep Blue Sea, Killer Joe
Don’t think I could make myself much more eclectic or schizoidDecember 20, 2012 at 2:30 pm #69714
I sort of have a 7-way tie for first, Amour is one of them; and Riva is my favorite performance overall
To be fair I’ve hardly seen any of the contenders so far this year. I’m in London so the big hitters are only just opening.
Seen Rust and Bone, Argo, Silver Linings Playbook, The Master, Skyfall. Got 2 weeks off now to start catching up