Directed by Michael Haneke
Time of the Wolf (2007) is a an end of the world movie set in the French countryside. Not really in the apocalyptic genre as there is no big event which set off the downfall of civilization. They don’t exactly say what happened, something with the drinking water but whatever happened has driven large of amount of refugees out of the cities where they congregate at only means of transportation that still functions, France’s train system. It’s here where the characters try and survive while waiting for the next train that may or may not come.
The problem with French movies is that besides crime, or police drama’s they don’t follow the normal movie conventions i.e. a story or any type of resolution by the time the movie finishes. If you’ve seen any of Haneke’s films before you know that its usually a couple scenes of brutality and gore followed by … nothing. Sometimes this works, in Funny Games – USA (Which is actually a remake of German language film called Funny Games) which a pair of serial killers slowly kill off a family one by one (Tim Roth and Naomi Watts play the parents) the large amount of dialogue and the how the killers play with the family makes the movie work. But in his other movie Cache nothing happens except the infamous knife suicide scene. In Time of the Wolf the movie starts off with a bang but then slowly drifts along, following the characters who mostly drift along in scenes that I imagine Haneke was trying to imprint with some kind of symbolism but left me with … nothing
French films are such an enigma to me. Occasionally something will come around, so under the radar and without a real plot of anykind yet WAM, it works so well and hits so hard you are left wishing the director had doubled up on the condoms. Other times, you are left with “Time of the Wolf”.
A good example of something unexpected and devoid of any conventional movie constructs, like a PLOT or a POINT, is the film
Trouble Every Day. Vincent Gallo and Claire Denis really bring to life a piece of cinema that for all intents and purposes should lie dead and inanimate at the bottom of a basket full of chewed up vagina’s. Somehow though, it works and works well. It captures the imagination. It shocks. It Awes.
Time of the Wolf DOES NOT.
YOSOMONO-3 out of 5 – If you’re a fan of end of the world movies then this is a must see otherwise you’ll probably fall asleep.
GAIJINASS-1 out of 5 – If you like crap masquerading as meaningful and heavy “Art”, by all means….