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From Cannes, with Love

media French actor Jean-Louis Trintignant in a still from Amour Festival de Cannes

Amour, or love in French, is the title of a film in the running for the Golden Palm at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. RFI’s Rosslyn Hyams is in Cannes where she reviewed the film.

In this Austrian-German-French production Michael Haneke directs French veteran actor Jean-Louis Trintignant, with a hundred or so film credits to his name, and Emmanuelle Riva. She has appeared in at least forty films.

Amour, meaning Love, is a sober film about an elderly Parisian couple, whose pleasant and apparently peaceful twilight existence comes to an end when health problems enter their life.

Cannes 2012

For two-hours, Haneka virtually shuts off the former music teachers, Anna, played by Riva and Georges, played Trintignant, from the world.

Their world is restricted to their apartment with very occasional visits from their only daughter, Eva, played bilingually by Isabelle Huppert. Georges tries for a while to stay in touch with the outside through the news on the radio or in the newspaper.

Anna’s health deteriorates. And as it does, Emmanuelle Riva’s performance goes from strength to strength.

The film tackles serious issues facing the elderly and those around them, including death, and in a sober way, avoiding any drama in the acting. Haneke, deals with what is an ultimate act of love, but shows it as the culmination of, in this scenario, an almost lifelong process.

Haneke won the Cannes 2009 Golden Palm with The White Ribbon.


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