Robert Walker Babson FR330 French Cinema 11/15/2017 Cache vs the Viewer Cache is a story about a rich Parisian family that is torn apart when they receive videotapes of surveillance footage of their house, accompanied by violent and crude drawings. The main character, Georges, a TV talk show personality, suspects this to be the work of someone from his mysterious and buried past. The director, Heneke, is known for crafting thrillers that make viewers twitch with suspicion and ambiguous portions of his films for the audience to explain for themselves. The film has sparked numerous theories and leaves the audience with the task of finding explanations for themselves after the sometimes confusing portions of the film. Heneke knows all too well the power a director has. He knows that he has the power to control the audience, bend them to his will. But when he manipulates, he does so in secret and with absolutely no intention of giving away his deceit. When asked about his film Amour by the Guardian, he refused to answer questions, saying “you are asking me to interpret, and I will not. Every meaning is fine, all interpretations are OK. I do not choose between them, because I dislike explanations”. I believe that this is also another particular trait of his that is unsettling, that if the viewer tries to gain some official source of conclusion and answers, there are none to be had, and that is supremely dissatisfying. Heneke confuses the viewers concerning the culprit of the film. When the viewers ask themselves is it is Majid, son of Algerian farmhand, the son of Majid, or Georges, he responded by saying all the answers are correct, saying that thrillers as a genre in film have no obligation to satiate the viewers curiosity and conscience. He actually argues against this practice, saying that it should be up to the viewers to answer their questions. Moreover, he leaves gaps for the viewers, and silently judges viewers of failing to ask the real question: how do people come to terms with their consciences and the past actions that they have taken? Many readers believe that Majid’s son is the culprit, but the same is not reflected by Heneke who believes it can be Majid, his son, God Himself, or human conscience. For most, this is even more confusing. Lastly, the cinema ends with long shots of the school steps of Pierrot with students emerging at the end of the day. Then comes along the son of Majeed. They get to converse in what we see as viewers as a friendly conversation, but we never get to hear what they are saying. The audience questions if it is surveillance footage, or if it could be a symbol for a new age of peace or war between the French and Algerians. Heneke declines to reveal the meaning, in fact ordering the actors not to talk on the subject, and the dialogue not to be published for the public. For me, this is the most disturbing aspect of the film, the unknowingness. It leaves you unsure and unsettled, not giving us a proper conclusion, but rather one that we create for ourselves, leaving us to our imaginations, certainly scarier and more disturbing than the truth. The silent questions are bound to remain unanswered forever and it is upon the readers to unravel the hidden meaning.