List Film

Benny's Video (4 stars)

(15) 105min (Tartan DVD retail)

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Benny's Video

DRAMA

‘How beastly the bourgeoisie is,’ DH Lawrence once proposed, and they don’t get much worse than in Benny’s Video. Not that the parents in Michael Funny Games Haneke’s film are especially cruel or vindictive, it’s more that they will stop at nothing to protect their movie-mad 14-year-old son’s future — even after he’s murdered a young girl just to see what it would be like. Benny (Arno Frisch) is a product of the mediated age, and can’t see clear lines between fact and fiction. But are his parents much better? Particularly given that they blur the line between right and wrong, concealing the crime so that Benny can have the future he deserves as a middle class citizen, no matter if he’s committed a crime that has denied someone else any future at all. Haneke as always treads his own fine line between moral rectitude and ethical subtlety in an interesting precursor to Code Unknown and Hidden. Minimal extras.

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