- Get 2 of 2 for 10 for £10.00 offered by Amazon.co.uk. Here's how (terms and conditions apply)
- Enjoy £1.00 reward to spend on movies or TV on Amazon Video when you purchase a DVD or Blu-ray offered by Amazon.co.uk. A maximum of 1 reward per customer applies. UK customers only. Offer ends at 23:59 GMT on Wednesday, December 20, 2017 Here's how (terms and conditions apply)
The Piano Teacher [DVD] 
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Special offers and product promotions
Frequently bought together
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Erika (Isabelle Huppert) teaches classical piano in a cold and often abrasive style. Approaching middle age, Erika lives with her doting mother (Annie Girardot) and still sleeps in the same bed with her. Erika's social life consists of occasionally sneaking away to a peep show where she secretly comes into contact with perverse passion, often using the discarded trash of previous customers. Her beautiful piano playing seduces youthful Walter (Benoit Magimel), who then takes the instructor's advanced class. Walter reveals his desire during a class session. Erika reacts curiously, presenting a long list of cruel, humiliating sexual acts she would like him to perform on her. Meanwhile, the teacher also torments a talented student (Anna Sigalevitch) who is already plagued by her own fears. Michael Haneke (CODE UNKNOWN) directed this unflinching allegorical tale of cruelty. The film caused a stir at the Cannes Film Festival where it was controversial not only for its subject matter, but also because it won multiple awards there--the Grand Prize and acting awards for both Huppert and Magimel--despite leaving many audience members outraged. Based on a novel by Elfriede Jelinek, the film features numerous classical piano sonatas banged out in an aggressive style.
An unexpected critical (Grand Prix at Cannes) and commercial (three months in London's West End) success on its release in 2001, The Piano Teacher is a provocative, but ultimately frustrating, film. The intensifying relationship between Erika Kohut, a Viennese piano teacher whose musical focus is gradually undone by sexual repression, and Walter Klemmer, her uninhibited but unsuspecting student and admirer, lacks an underlying motivation, either physical or emotional, to sustain the tortuous encounters of the film's later stages.
Director Michael Haneke powerfully evokes the claustrophobic décor of the flat that Kohut shares with her dictatorial yet ineffectual mother, with whom her relationship progresses from the pitiful to the farcical. And farce of the blackest kind is what the film descends to, as Kohut and Klemmer play out a vicious game of sado-masochistic control with an intriguing but indecisive conclusion.
Isabelle Huppert is magnificently assured as Kohut, but Benoît Magimel often seems confused as Klemmer, while Annie Girardot resorts to a caricature of the mother. Fans of classical piano will enjoy the masterclass and rehearsal sequences during the first hour, though music is then relegated to a minor role--its deeper relevance to the film being ultimately difficult to define. English subtitles are provided, and the monochrome shades in which the scenes abound come through with suitably wan intensity. Yet it's hard not to feel that a more profound inquiry into the darker side of sexual desire has been lost along the way. --Richard Whitehouse --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
Customers who bought this item also bought
Top customer reviews
Normal life, basically.
Zero joy with the characters in this movie, but why should there be?
Not a "go to" movie, but worth seeing.
Left me feeling empty. But I soon filled up with wine.
This is not a film for the faint-hearted or lovers of `Mary Poppins plays piano' type of entertainment! It is at times very dark, and sexually explicit, though the latter amounts to no more that about ten minutes or less in total in a film of over two hours. But what there is, is strong and often violent. I did wonder about the strength of the sexual scenes, until I realised it had to be so, to fully explain the intense state of mind of Erika. The film is, after all, about Erika's mental condition and her relationship with the people in her life.
The classical piano music to be heard, although the film is not about this, is nevertheless essential and enjoyable, and most is heard during the early half of the film. My only small (very) criticism is I thought the sub-titling was a little on the large side - others may not agree! It does not in any case hinder the following of the screenplay.
There are a good number of reviews of this movie - some of which are very comprehensive, even learned. They are well worth reading. I won't attempt to compete with those. What I will say is `The Piano Teacher' is a disturbing, and above all a very compelling film to watch. The industry awards it collected are no surprise. If you like French cinema films you'll like this one!
The film really shows how far a demonic parent can go in destroying their child. Erika is hard to like, but as you realise how she has been affected, and that this very appealing young man, Walter Klemmer, will be powerless to get beyond the blocks, you cannot help feeling devastated and oddly moved. The final sequence is one of the most violent I have ever seen, even though it is not THAT violent in real terms, certainly not in comparison with what we are used to seeing. It is also acutely painful to see how Walter, with his young man's bravado, is sucked down into the degradation, even though he does bring a note of comedy at times. The acting by all three leads is astonishing, and the direction by Michael Haneke has all his trademark clinical clarity and unrelenting gaze. There is also fantastic beauty in the music - Schubert and Brahms - that stands in such stark contrast to Erika's inner life, suggesting that the relation between the two is less simple than we might assume. It is a demanding film to watch, but utterly compelling and unforgettable, and it doesn't compromise in telling us the truth. There is no softening or suggestion that love will conquer all, just a raging, raw torrent of pain, a legacy of an upbringing the character cannot get beyond, rather in the same way as Estelle in Great Expectations, but made as sharp as broken glass.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews