Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Film review - funny games

One question - do any of you lovely readers have any Eggs? If you get a knock at the door after this film, you better hope you have plenty of them in the fridge so you have time to run.

To many unsadistic viewers unlike myself, this film is somewhat disturbing. Probably due to its calm nature, unorthodox timing and use of jokes in horrific situations that many would consider the material of nightmares. Unfortunately, things like this really do happen in the real world, and when they do they come unexpected. Thus, just like the somewhat "trippy" nature of this film, the story may be confusing in the scary reflection of real life circumstance.

I found myself backing the two "men" in the film of whom were committing the crimes, it was all so "innocent" and charming to watch. Their brutality was hidden under a white sheet of manners, most usual mannerisms of violence being churned out in an opposite approach. When the villains left the film for a short while, I became bored watching the Mother (played brilliantly by Naomi Watts) scrambling around in attempts to resolve her horrific situation. The film suddenly lacked its kick in these moments where I observed from my colleagues a sense of unease, a disturbance, an awkward silence, as if the room wasn't quiet enough already.

The film is based around American suburbia by a beautiful landscape, a lake with neighbours spread across far and wide. Some neighbours would reach each other by boat, as a result of the kind hospitality that these individuals show they enjoy the warm company of their tidy neighbourhood. So, everythings perfect. Brilliant scene for what they wouldn't expect - murder - and lots of it.

One sunny afternoon Ann Farber is preparing her family a dinner when the doorbell rings. Her son Georgie answers, only to come face to face with a ghostly faced smile from a well groomed teenager. This boy is called Peter, who lurks his way into the family house by asking for Eggs claiming to be coming from the house next door. Already you can sense the unease, this entity in the house gives off a presence which shouldn't be there, he is almost uncanny to his own image. His nervous position covers up his bad acting when he repeatedly drops the eggs until there is only a few left. In comes Peters co-killer Paul, dressed in a similar fashion and just as clean cut in appearance. The violence starts as Peter manically asks for the eggs, and swings a Golf club at Ann's husband, George Farber. This Golf club was also used as a test weapon on the family's Dog, which Ann later finds dead in the back of her Car.

One thing to note is almost how idiotic the family was, how they had the chance to easily over power the two boys yet they never took the chance. In some respects this is why I prefer the villains in this film, they are intelligent and seem to be merely Cats playing with Mice. As a result I would of found it even more thrilling if we saw multiple family murders within this film, and some outside force attempting to track them down and stop them at their game.

I found the use of breaking the forth wall interesting, an addition to an insight into the maddened mind of Peter and Paul in their attempt to plan their murders. In some sense, what also made this movie interesting is that as Peter and Paul are aware of the audience, it almost seems like this murder has been fixed up, like a film they have seen one too many times that they are trying to reconstruct. The addition to different movie like qualities, such as rewinding time when Ann kills Paul to bring Paul back to life are interesting, and to me show that indeed the two boys are merely just playing nothing more than a game. Who's to say their not harming anyone at all? Perhaps they plan to rewind all of these events once they have finished, perhaps they are all in on the act, perhaps they are really the captives inside a prison of some sort being made to act out a television show to save their own lives. Thinking outside the box suddenly makes this film less violent, or "weird".

Paul: You can see it in the movie right?

Peter: Of course.

Paul: Well then she's as real as reality because you can see it too. Right?

Peter: Bullshit.

Paul: Why?

This confirms my previous take on their situation, also making a somewhat disturbing analysis that anything you see on the screen is just as real as anything you see in real life. This brings the notion that the film itself is actually real, pixels are producing light, just like any other source of image will reflect light into your retina to produce what we call sight. So are the people in the films doomed to eternal deaths and misery? Is there anyway to save them? Of course there is, they answer this themselfs - rewind! However, just like real life there is no way you can prevent this from happening, as someone out there will be playing the same film anyway. You cannot escape from death.

Paul and Peter continue on their quest, betting that the family will all be dead by morning. Of course, they are right. They manage to kill of the family one by one, starting with the boy. They play with the family by leaving them for a while, hoping they would try nervously crawling out looking for help only to crawl back into their path of pure passionate evil. Dragging them back into the hell of their own home, they finish the job. As morning kicks in they don't break their bet, they push Ann off a boat as they float across the peaceful lake to their next awaiting innocent victims.

Overall, good film. Kind of quirky, had its cheesy moments which made me laugh, the violence was a little bit too forced at points and in some respects it was a bit too slow mid film. On another perspective this film is incredibly disturbing, managing to unlock that confusing yet uneasy sense you would usually associate with nightmares. The storyline I felt should of been broadened out to a larger scale as I previously suggested, to make this film even more bloody and disturbing, also giving it a chance to fly off the wall with a tons of additional cinematic blasphemy.


1 comment:

  1. This is one of the better review!! thanks for this insight, will def watch this wen i get some time though :(