7.5/10
44,210
240 user 155 critic

The Piano Teacher (2001)

La pianiste (original title)
A young man romantically pursues his masochistic piano teacher.

Director:

Writers:

, (novel)
Reviews
Popularity
2,728 ( 214)

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 17 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Amour (2012)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Georges and Anne are an octogenarian couple. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, also a musician, lives in Britain with her family. One day, Anne has a stroke, and the couple's bond of love is severely tested.

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Jean-Louis Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva, Isabelle Huppert
Caché (2005)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A married couple is terrorized by a series of surveillance videotapes left on their front porch.

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Daniel Auteuil, Juliette Binoche, Maurice Bénichou
Drama | History | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Strange events happen in a small village in the north of Germany during the years before World War I, which seem to be ritual punishment. Who is responsible?

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Christian Friedel, Ernst Jacobi, Leonie Benesch
Funny Games (1997)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Two violent young men take a mother, father, and son hostage in their vacation cabin and force them to play sadistic "games" with one another for their own amusement.

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Susanne Lothar, Ulrich Mühe, Arno Frisch
Code Unknown (2000)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A young man harasses a homeless woman, another man protests, the police arrest both and the woman has to leave the country. What were their various story-lines leading up to this event?

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Juliette Binoche, Thierry Neuvic, Josef Bierbichler
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

When Anna and her family arrive at their holiday home, they find it occupied by strangers. This confrontation is just the beginning of a painful learning process.

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Isabelle Huppert, Anaïs Demoustier, Béatrice Dalle
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A European family who plan on escaping to Australia, seem caught up in their daily routine, only troubled by minor incidents. However, behind their apparent calm and repetitive existence, they are actually planning something sinister.

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Birgit Doll, Dieter Berner, Leni Tanzer
Benny's Video (1992)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A 14-year-old video enthusiast is so caught up in film fantasy that he can no longer relate to the real world, to such an extent that he commits murder and records an on-camera confession for his parents.

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Arno Frisch, Angela Winkler, Ulrich Mühe
Funny Games (2007)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Two psychopathic young men take a family hostage in their cabin.

Director: Michael Haneke
Stars: Naomi Watts, Tim Roth, Michael Pitt
Crime | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An east European girl goes to America with her young son, expecting it to be like a Hollywood film.

Director: Lars von Trier
Stars: Björk, Catherine Deneuve, David Morse
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Mrs. Schober
...
Anna Sigalevitch ...
Anna Schober
Cornelia Köndgen ...
Mme Gerda Blonskij
Thomas Weinhappel ...
Baritone
...
Man in drive-in
Philipp Heiss ...
Naprawnik
William Mang ...
Teacher
Rudolf Melichar ...
Director
Michael Schottenberg ...
Teacher
Gabriele Schuchter ...
Margot
...
Singing teacher
Edit

Storyline

Erika Kohut is a pianist, teaching music. Schubert and Schumann are her forte, but she's not quite at concert level. She's approaching middle age, living with her mother who is domineering then submissive; Erika is a victim then combative. With her students she is severe. She visits a sex shop to watch DVDs; she walks a drive-in theater to stare at couples having sex. Walter is a self-assured student with some musical talent; he auditions for her class and is forthright in his attraction to her. She responds coldly then demands he let her lead. Next she changes the game with a letter, inviting him into her fantasies. How will he respond; how does sex have power over our other faculties? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Perversion at its wicked best!

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for aberrant sexuality including violence, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

|

Release Date:

5 September 2001 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Piano Teacher  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

ATS 70,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,236,319 (France), 7 September 2001

Opening Weekend USA:

$29,671, 31 March 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,900,282, 10 November 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The character of the mother is based on author Elfriede Jelinek's real life mother. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Mother: Good evening, child.
Erika Kohut: Evening, mama.
The Mother: [sarcastically] Home already? I'm so happy.
Erika Kohut: I'm going.
The Mother: Not so fast.
Erika Kohut: Please. Leave me be. I'm tired.
The Mother: I can quite believe it. Your last pupil left 3 hours ago. Might I know where you've been all this time?
Erika Kohut: [trying to go to her room] Please.
The Mother: No, you don't. Not until you tell me.
[...]
See more »

Connections

References The Patriot (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Piano Trio in E flat, D.929
Franz Schubert
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Powerful and thought provoking, 'The Piano Teacher' features a superb performance from Isabelle Huppert
20 May 2004 | by See all my reviews

'The Piano Teacher' is the third Haneke movie I've seen. I didn't like the other two ('Funny Games' I thought was a cop out and 'Code Unknown' a bore) so I expected little from this one. However I was wrong to prejudge it. It's a very good movie, powerful, thought provoking and features a superb performance from Isabelle Huppert. She plays a Erika Kohut, a brilliant but highly repressed pianist. Walter Klemmer (Benoit Magimel) is a young man who is very sure of himself who attempts to seduce her. The thing is she is a deeply disturbed individual and he can't cope when her true nature is uncovered. I don't want to go into any great detail about Erika or her mental state. The movie reveals this slowly and beautifully. I was impressed that there was no attempt at pop psychology or pat explanations that you would expect in a Hollywood melodrama with similar subject matter. Huppert is extraordinary throughout. I can't think of many contemporary Hollywood actresses who could have played this role as convincingly. 'The Piano Teacher' is not for those who can't face the dark side of human nature. It's far from being a life affirming "feel good" movie. If the difficult subject matter of 'Irreversible' or 'The War Zone' interested you then this is your kind of movie. I can't say I "enjoyed" it, but it was a worthwhile, rewarding experience and how often do you get to say that these days?


31 of 45 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 240 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

'Star Wars' Creatures We Love

"The IMDb Show" breaks down the origins of some iconic Star Wars creatures. Plus, legendary sword choreographer Tim Weske explains the basics of lightsaber combat.

Watch now