In Funny Games, Georg and Anna, with their son Georgie, are traveling to their lakeside summer home. Upon arrival, Georg and Georgie head off to the lake for sailing while Anna prepares dinner in the kitchen. The serenity is shattered by a young man named Peter, who knocks at the door asking to borrow some eggs. The unwanted visitor is joined by Paul, a brash, arrogant young man. It soon becomes clear the pair have no intention of leaving. When Georg returns and tries to throw them out, physical violence erupts, and the family is held captive. What ensues are highly disturbing and violent 'games' initiated by Paul and Peter with Georg, Anna and Georgie as the unwilling participants.
“Funny Games is a firestarter for post-screening arguments, alight with ghastly images and actions, and essayed by a spot-on cast and storyline that flows seamlessly from one nightmarish incident to the next. It's an uncomfortable, distressing, and altogether provocative take on the global culture of media violence that not only draws in hapless viewers, but also forces them into fait-accompli acceptance, like it or not.”
---Marc Savlov, Austin Chronicle
Directed by Michael Haneke.
1997, Austria • 108 minutes • 35mm
German/French w/ English Subtitles
Co-sponsored by the Organizing Committee for the
Graduate Student Conference in Comparative Literature
UC Irvine, April 6-7