Capital Celluloid 2023 — Day 116: Wed Apr 26

Code Unknown (Haneke, 2000): BFI Southbank, NFT2, 6.15pm

This 35mm presentation is part of the Big Screen Classics season at BFI Southbank. You can find the full details via this link. The film will be introduced by
Jelena Milosavljevic, Events Programmer at the cinema.

Code Unknown is one of the richest achievements of modern European art cinema. Director Michael Haneke places his typically forensic gaze on modern western society and finds it wanting but the way he does so is cinematically innovative. Implicating the audience and challenging the expectations of the viewer is the aim here and the director succeeds, leaving mysteries which will have filmgoers arguing long after they have left the cinema.

Chicago Reader review:
'Aptly subtitled “Incomplete Tales of Several Journeys,” the best feature to date by Austrian director Michael Haneke (2000, 117 min.) is a procession of long virtuoso takes that typically begin and end in the middle of actions or sentences, constituting not only an interactive jigsaw puzzle but a thrilling narrative experiment. The second episode is a nine-minute street scene involving an altercation between an actress (Juliette Binoche), her boyfriend's younger brother, an African music teacher who works with deaf-mute students, and a woman beggar from Romania; the other episodes effect a kind of narrative dispersal of these characters and some of their relatives across time and space. I couldn't always get what was happening, but I was never bored, and the questions raised reflect the mysteries of everyday life. The title refers to the pass codes used to enter houses in Paris—a metaphor for codes that might crack certain global and ethical issues.' 
Jonathan Rosenbaum

Here (and above) is an extract.

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