Happy End: Of Course Not, by Scott Nye

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  1. Some of us enjoyed Happy End far more than you did, Scott. “Judgmental, condescending, simplistic, and pointlessly cruel” might be applied to nearly any satiric film depicting a fractured family whose facade of wealth and success is unsustainable due to self-inflicted wounds, and the difficulty of finding and keeping love.

    All of the characters were to some small or large extent sympathetic despite their flaws (OK, not Pierre), even the most creepily menacing child since The Bad Seed and its imitators. I especially enjoyed Haneke’s denying the audience a complete sense of understanding, achieved by the juxtaposition of dissociated events as you mention, and by our inability to always see and hear everything going on (as when passing traffic drowns out Georges’ conversation with immigrants). Like the characters, but less so, the audience is unable to be sure about everything. That seems rather refreshingly the opposite of so many American films, with dialog on the nose.

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