Daily Archives: December 31, 2005


Chilean writer-director Alicia Scherson, who won the Tribeca film festival’s new narrative filmmaker award, went to college in Chicago but shot this delightfully fresh first feature in Santiago. She’s remarkably inventive, with a surrealist eye and a sense of rhythm in her editing. Her film starts with boldly styled opening credits over exciting street photography, and it goes on to explore alternative lifestyles, cutting between a wealthy man who’s lost in swift succession his wife, his job, and his briefcase, and a live-in nursemaid from the sticks who finds the briefcase shortly before losing her ailing patient. In Spanish with subtitles. 105 min.… Read more »


This brilliant if unpleasant puzzle without a solution about surveillance and various kinds of denial finds writer-director Michael Haneke near the top of his game, though it’s not a game everyone will want to play. The brittle host of a TV book-chat show (Daniel Auteuil) and his unhappy wife (Juliette Binoche) start getting strange videos that track their comings and goings outside their Paris home. Once the husband traces the videos to an Algerian he abused when both were kids, things only get more tense, troubled, and unresolved. Haneke is so punitive toward the couple and his audience that I periodically rebelled againstor went into denial aboutthe director’s rage, and I guess that’s part of the plan. In French with subtitles. R, 117 min. (JR)… Read more »