Benny’s video – a look into the mind of the deranged

Benny’s video is a 1992 Austrian-Swiss psychological horror movie directed by Michael Haneke, the main focus of which is Benny, a 14-year-old child of a wealthy family obsessed with film and the fantasy world.

Even from the start, you notice that Benny is not really a regular kid. He spends all of his time watching violent movies (mainly the toxic avenger), and seems to run a drug ring in his school. He is also very lonely and his companion is his camera which he loves using.

During one of his trips to the video store, he notices a young girl in front of the store and he decides to invite her to his own home while his parents are out of town. They spend some time together, talking and having fun and he decides to show her a video which he made about a pig being killed. Surely enough, after that things take a very dark turn. and (spoiler alert) Benny kills her. After that, he goes back to his life seemingly unscathed by the event.

Now this movie is not really disturbing in a typical way but it does have some very messed up moments. There is pretty much no gore or anything similar, the disturbing aspect comes from the psychological side. What could force someone to do something like that? Why would they do it in such a nonchalant way? Was it the media consumed? The neglect? Who knows…

That I think was my favorite part of this film. It leaves a lot of things to be discussed, even though there is one implication in the film I completely disagree with which has been especially prevalent these days – Violence in games/movies. Does it really cause violence in real life? Not really.

It’s pretty clear in this movie that there were many factors that contribute to making a killer,  especially the ending which I did not see coming. An ending which almost made the movie feel like a dark comedy.

Even though it’s not the best psychological horror that I’ve seen it’s still a movie I’ll highly recommend to any fan of the subgenre. It’s well acted, well written and really sticks with you.

Final verdict: 7/10

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