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Summary: Jean, a farm lad, wants to escape his silent father; he runs to Paris to his older brother, Georges, who's away covering the war in Kosovo. Angry, he throws a bag of half-eaten pastry into a beggar's lap. Amadou, a young Franco-African, berates him. The police arrive, arrest Amadou and deport the beggar. Georges's girlfriend Anne is upset; it colors her relationship with Georges when he returns from the war. Separate lives intersect for the one moment, around the pastry bag, and all are altered. (imdb)
Much better then the very similar 'Crash'. It's slow, and it can be very frustrating. Still, there's some great scenes, and the brooding ending (even if it doesn't go anywhere exactly) was expertly done. Juliette Binoche freaked me out in her film within a film more than anything in Cache or Funny Games.
It has a similar narrative structure of "71 Fragments...". Different persons, of various races and personalities, are connected after a tense situation... But unlike Iñarritu's crap, this is subtle and brilliant.
haneke builds up great tension in the first half, or even whole, hour. but then it all just goes apart and I dont even know what to think of it. it feels a bit like a somewhat weak, but potent, first step towards the fantastic "caché" that would come later.
Of all the films I've seen from Haneke this is easily the one I find most challenging so much so that both times I've watched it I've had to take a break roughly half way through. And yet, I think I still like it quite a lot. There are numerous very striking scenes in the film, and though I find it frustrating I can't deny that I also find it oddly fascinating. At the very least I can say I would quite happily sit down and watch it again tomorrow, which has to say something about it.
Very challenging and experimental study of discrimination. Movie was a collection of moments of life which never started from the beginning and never conclude, but the context join them together in a head of viewer. It's also a collection of seemingly non-moving and bursting emotions scenes (mostly the first one). Juliette Binoche made a touching role.
The first 15-20 minutes (up to Binoche talking to the camera) are as close to perfection as Haneke has filmed so far, and it was kind of a shame that the rest of the movie didn't live up to that. That being said, it's still a great flick, and possibly Haneke's magnum opus as far as portraying his usual themes go.
I really need to watch more Haneke. Code Unknown is full of interesting stuff, with emotional and actual emigres bumping into each other in Paris. Every image loaded with symbolism and beautifully not at all tied together. Crash without the moral.