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Parents' Guide to

Funny Games

By Cynthia Fuchs, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Mature, complicated look at movie violence.

Movie R 2008 108 minutes
Funny Games Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 16+

Based on 12 parent reviews

age 18+

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much consumerism
age 14+

An intense masterpiece

Really one of my favorite films of all time. Violence 6/10. Mostly offscreen. Offscreen violence includes a dog beaten to death (body seen from far off), a child being shot dead, and other disturbing content, and death. The only violence onscreen is when a man is shot with a shotgun, but this is shown in a flash. Sex 4/10. A woman is forced to undress but no nudity is seen. She is in her underwear for most of the movie after this. Language is used pretty often with some of it being pretty strong.

This title has:

Too much violence

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (12 ):
Kids say (7 ):

A scene-for-scene remake of director Michael Haneke's own, same-named 1997 Austrian film, Funny Games has more on its mind than startling displays of blood and terror. In fact, the violent acts themselves occur off-screen -- though the very nasty effects are underscored in long, often immobile takes. Ann, George, and Georgie repeatedly appear in tears, their faces bruised and fearful, while their tormentors taunt them with stories of damaged childhoods and twisted intentions (Paul demands that they make a bet with him, that "in 12 hours all three of you are gonna be kaput"). Scene after scene shows the debilitating effects of such emotional and physical stress, as the day wears into night and no good end appears possible.

When George asks why they don't just kill the family now, Paul smiles wanly: "You should not forget the importance of entertainment." Indeed, this is the film's focus. On one level, it makes viewers pay for its implied violence (rather than indulging in the dubious pleasures of "torture porn" like Saw). On another level, the film presses its point harder. At first, Paul and Peter seem like standard movie psychos, their cherubic faces almost more chilling than their utter contempt for their victims. But then Paul begins to address the camera directly, asking what "you" might want to see. When at last he stops a scene that has gone "wrong," grabs a TV remote, rewinds it, and replays it to accommodate his own ends, the film has lurched from regular horror into meta territory. At once intellectual and difficult to see, it is, ironically, all about watching.

Movie Details

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