Funny Games: The Game Sucks.

Halloween is tomorrow, so here’s a review on a “scary” movie. It’s scary, I didn’t say I would like it.

I bought Funny Games because I thought it would be a good film. From the trailer it had a sense of majestic aura but with a psychopathic twist. The plot is simple: two normal-looking boys pick a house and mess with the family if they could survive their “games.” If the family wins, they live. But if the boys win, the family dies. It is a remake of the director’s first movie from 1997. My scenario had a win-win situation. I was sadly mistaken because I immediately sold the film. I did not want that film in my house.

First, let me say the good parts. The movie is frightening; a perfect movie for Halloween. The pacing is glacially slow, but provides much tension by also having the sounds off-screen. The acting is well-deserved because the killers are unsympathetic and relentless while the family acts terrified. I commend the director for not showing the brutal death scenes as they were off-screen. This provides the audience with a more terrifying notion of what actually happened. Also, “the cat in the bag” was disturbing.

But the bad parts were plentiful compared to the good parts. Again, the movie is frightening to the point it haunted me for a while. Mainly, because the movie has a murder based in reality. This could happen to anyone! The “main” song played three times, and it was a terrible choice because it blasted terrible rock music. The killers are viewed as “repressed homosexuals,” which I found insulting and regressive for the LGBT community. It speaks volumes that they are characterized as they are psychotically disturbed and possibly gay. The movie also breaks the fourth wall completely throwing the audience off-guard. But most of all, I do not like the director’s message of violence: “We are a society expecting for violence in this media-saturated world.” What? By delivering this half-assed message, he cheats the audience of the classical Hollywood narrative of a satisfying ending. The killers should have died…painfully. I don’t care about the message because it doesn’t speak today. I just want an ending where the bad people in the world deserve their untimely fates. But the director rewinds the climactic scene to prove a point. As a viewer, I was frustrated and not impressed. For a shot-by-shot remake that he revisits a decade later, there is nothing new or groundbreaking. It is familiar territory that doesn’t impress, except with well-known actors. And lastly, not a feel good movie because it will leave you frustrated.

My rating: 3/10

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