The Cinema of Michael Haneke: Europe Utopia

B. McCann (Editor), David Sorfa (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Michael Haneke is one of the most important directors working in Europe today. Films such as Funny Games (1997), Code Unknown (2000) and Hidden (2005) interrogate the ethical dilemmas of our era with forensic clarity and merciless insight. His films consider their audience as much as the spectator does them, frequently implicating the protagonists and audiences as being the guilty architects of their own misfortunes. Yet even amidst the barren nihilism of The Seventh Continent (1989) and Time of the Wolf (2003), a dark strain of optimism emerges with which Haneke allows us to consider the possibility of a future in which terrible and inescapable guilt might not necessarily be all encompassing. It is this contingent and unlikely future that we find in his cinema: a vision of Europe Utopia. This edited collection celebrates, explicates and sometimes challenges the worldview that Haneke presents in his film world. The Cinema of Michael Hankeke offers a comprehensive examination of the director's central themes and preoccupations - bourgeois alienation, modes and critiques of spectatorship, the role of the media – and analyses hitherto marginalised aspects of his work, such as the functions of performance and stardom, the early Austrian TV productions, romanticism in The Piano Teacher (2001), and Haneke's 2007 shot-for-shot remake of Funny Games.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherWallflower Press / Columbia University Press
ISBN (Print)1906660298, 9781906660291
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Performing Arts
  • Film
  • Michael Haneke
  • Film Theory
  • Europe

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