Saw this last night. I came to it as a general fan of the director Michael Haneke, whose “Funny Games” was a brilliant provocation (and scarily funny) and “Code Inconnu” was smart, complexly attentive to social injustices and personal desires,…. (And, no, I haven’t seen “The Piano Teacher,” about which a bunch of us would surely and with great vigor disagree.) Both films are very smart, and I walked away from ’em thinking myself very smart for having seen them and liked them. I felt nothing, beyond that intellectual engagement.
I wept–like a fucking baby–at the end of “Time of the Wolf.” The story is post-some-vague-apocalypse, and society’s broken down. We follow a few survivors–mostly one family (Isabelle Huppert and two children)–as they get by. And that’s about it; not much momentous happens. It’s beautifully shot, the acting is pitch-perfect, and the scenario seems utterly realist (carefully attentive to the small details, unconcerned with the big picture).
And the emotional wallop of the final two scenes caught me so off-guard I did, literally, break down and cry. I haven’t done that since The Butterfly Effect. Ok, I’m kidding about Butterfly. But has anyone else seen Wolf? Was this just some random emotional charge, brought on by too little sleep and underlying anxiety about my kid growing up? Or was the film as effective as it seemed?