Film Review: Amour (2012)
My rating: ★★★★★
Everything has to come to an end but what does not end is your inevitable love; this is the lesson that I learned today. Winner of the Golden Palm at 2012 Cannes Film Festival, written and directed by Michael Haneke, Amour is a meticulous, demanding and a delicate psychological drama with a story and narrative beyond your imagination. The beginning is a mere proof that something is going to happen in the end, but how it would, and more importantly, WHY it would, reveals in the film through old memories, poetry and heart-warming conversations. A lot of people may not like this movie and think of it as garbage, which I know would happen but let me put it this way: Not everyone can understand the true meaning of this film. You have to understand what is going on, you have to think of the story from everyone’s perspective which requires your attention, demands your concentration because the real meaning is hidden in those delicate and usual conversations between the old couple, Georges and Anne whom are played by Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva respectively. Emmanuelle Riva’s performance is out of this world, and I’m quite disappointed in myself that I had never heard of her before. The way she has carried out her role throughout the film seems ridiculously natural and it makes you feel so bad to see her like that.
The film’s plot is based on an identical situation that happened in Haneke’s family and I think that fact makes this film so close to him and that’s why he was able to turn it into a wonderful piece of love as the title explains itself. This film has a slow-pace and it keeps going at the same pace until the end and is still able to offer so much which is both magical and thought-provoking. Why is it thought-provoking? Because it made me think that God forbid it happens to me, anyone I know (i.e. my family member or a friend) or even anyone I don’t know at all, it would be so hard for them to go through all of this. I felt terrible for the couple at times, as Eva (the couple’s daughter who is married and is also going through a rough phase so she doesn’t get much time to visit her parents) asks Georges about Anne’s worsening condition to which he replies that, “Things will go on as they have done up until now. They’ll go from bad to worse. Things will go on, and then one day it will all be over.” This line moved me especially what Georges did which requires more than courage to do to someone you love more than your own life. How hard it is to lose someone you have loved your whole life but one day, all of a sudden, it all ends and you have no idea what to do with your life anymore because you’re old, you’re tired of everything and you want nothing but your loved one for the rest of your life and that is the only thing you can’t get. How hard it could be to endure this, which I cannot even think of imagining because it is one of the hardest things to do, to be able learn to live without someone you have loved your entire life because you give up eventually and you are not able find any purpose to live any more.
Michael Haneke has done a wonderful job on this film, it really deserves to be appreciated by every film lover and even if you don’t watch films, you still need to watch this, because it has a strong message for everybody including me: A message of love, affection and commitment, which has been delivered properly. Amour has also taught me to love my parents even more, to be there for them at all times because they are an essential part of our lives, they sacrifice their own happiness for us because they want to see us happy but we don’t give them anything in return when the tables are turned which is dreadful. What could be better than this compliment that after watching this film I went downstairs and hugged my parents and told them how much I love them. I thank Michael Haneke for teaching me the true meaning of love. This is an extremely tough film to watch at some points, and it gave me chills on more than one occasions. Amour is easily one of the best and greatest films of the year 2012.