Amour

From the elegantly pitiless Austrian filmmaker Michael Haneke, here’s a chamber play of sorts about the most basic human stuff: love and death. (Significantly, love alone is what the title comes down to.) It stars Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva as an elderly Parisian couple coming to terms with the end of their life together, along with Haneke regular Isabelle Huppert as a vexed daughter. Maybe no other living filmmaker can so frankly — and, yes, compassionately — assay the buildup to bereavement, that universal terror of lost companionship, and certainty, and consolation. It’s not just because the leads are elderly that this movie makes so many others seem like trite juvenilia.