The Avengers have nothing to fear. Don't expect the latest Michael Haneke movie to defeat the superhero flick at the box office or in terms of media coverage. But as far as I'm concerned, Amour — please scroll down to check out the French-language trailer — is one of the top five or so most eagerly anticipated film events of 2012. Amour's special effect, much more powerful than any CGI-created nonsense, is the casting of Story of Women's Isabelle Huppert, Hiroshima mon amour's Emmanuelle Riva, and The Conformist's Jean-Louis Trintignant.
Shot in early 2011, Amour features 80-year-old Trintignant (nearly 130 movies in the last 56 years) and 84-year-old Riva (more than 50 movies in the last 52 years) as retired music teachers who have been married for decades. The 58-year-old Isabelle Huppert (more than 90 movies in the last four decades), plays the couple's musician daughter.
In the trailer below, Huppert's character tells her father that when she walked into his apartment, "I remembered how I'd always hear the two of you make love when I was a little kid. I had the feeling that you loved each other, and that you'd remain together forever." But the elderly couple's devotion to each other is tested after the wife suffers a stroke.
Written and directed by Haneke, and also featuring Certified Copy's William Shimell, Amour is one of the films in competition for the Cannes Film Festival's Palme d'Or. Three years ago, Haneke won the Palme d'Or for The White Ribbon.
Amour opens on Oct. 12 in France. There's no US date set as yet, but distributor Sony Pictures Classics should release it later this year.
Michael Haneke / Jean-Louis Trintignant / Emmanuelle Riva / Amour photo: Films du Losange / Sony Pictures Classics.