As a rough rule, cinema can be sundered into two halves: six o’clock films and nine o’clock films. Most movies are nine-o’clock affairs, and none the worse for it. You get home from work, grab something to eat, and ead to the theatre [sic], and enjoy the show. And so to bed — alone or entwined, but, either way, with dreams whose sweetness will not be crumbled or soured by what you saw onscreen. A six o’clock movie requires more organization: prebooked tickets, a restaurant table, the right friends. You’re going to need them, because if all runs according to plan you will spend the second half of the evening tossing the movie —the impact and substance of it —back and forth….”The Reader is a nine o’clock movie that thinks its a six o’clock. “Groundhog Day” is the opposite. And “The White Ribbon”? A six o’clock movie, if I ever saw one.
Anthony Lane’s got a medium-length piece on Haneke in this week’s New Yorker, but you have to buy it, whether on paper or screen. Unless there’s a secret like magazinetorrents.com I don’t know about (a prduct of the “fan-scan” community).