Amour is an unconventional love story filled with sorrow. Georges becomes nervous when his wife, Anne, suffers a momentary lapse of cognizance, so he insists on scheduling a doctor’s appointment. The diagnosis is a blood vessel is restricting blood flow to her brain, and after an unsuccessful surgery to treat it, Anne’s prognosis is terminal, which plays out through a gradual deterioration of her awareness. Anne resigns herself to her fate and chooses to spend her remaining moments of coherence with a sense of normalcy at home doing routine things she enjoys; reading a book, and listening to classical music to remind her of her days as a piano teacher.
The story centers primarily on Georges and the emotional toll Anne’s condition exerts on him. Their daughter’s visits and conversations with her father were an interesting choice, which serve as a way for Georges to express feelings of helplessness at the inability to ease his wife’s burden, and ultimately he surrenders to the grim reality.
Amour portrays the lengths a spouse will go to be with their loved one, but its flaw was that noticeably absent in certain scenes were simple displays of affection necessary to make Georges’ sacrifice convincing. In the opening scene, the couple’s interactions seem indifferent as they arrive home from a concert performed by the Anne’s student. Later, Georges is waiting at home alone after Anne’s surgery rather than being with her at the hospital when she’s released. Without sharing some warm moments on screen while Anne is lucid, Georges’ actions initially come off as one of obligation rather than love.
Nonetheless, for its performances and dialogue, Amour is a film worth seeing.