Saskia Diesing – Nena (2014)

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The film tells the story of sixteen-year-old Nena, who is confronted with the suicide attempt of her handicapped father. At the same time she falls head over heels in love for the first time in her life with Carlo, whose father has just outed himself. Away from prying eyes of the adults – who struggle with failed marriages, blossoming love and insufferable physical decline – they push the boundaries of their friendship, love and sexuality. But while discovering her own lust for life, Nena realizes that her father’s existence is becoming more and more unbearable. Continue reading

Tamar van den Dop – Supernova (2014)

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Quote:
A bored-to-death Dutch teenage girl from the sticks seems to be waiting for an adolescent-age Godot in Supernova, the second feature as a director of Dutch actress Tamar van den Dop, who here co-stars as the girl’s mother.

Resolutely arthouse in its approach, this adaptation of a novel by Flemish author Bo Van Ranst won’t exactly set the box-office alight anywhere but offers more proof of the directorial talents of van den Dop and the serious range and sheer star power of Gaite Jansen (The Cost of Sugar, Tricked) who essentially has to shoulder the burden of making teenage boredom look interesting. The film had its world premiere in the Generation sidebar at the recent Berlin Film Festival and should be appreciated at other festivals as well. It opened commercially in the Netherlands April 17. Continue reading

Jos Stelling – Duska (2007)

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Plot / Synopsis
A socially inept middle-aged man is confronted with an unexpected guest even more clueless than himself in this comedy. Bob is a film critic from the Netherlands who loves and understands the movies but doesn’t have the same knack with the real world, especially the opposite sex. Bob is deeply infatuated with a woman who works at the popcorn counter of his favorite movie theater, but while she sometimes flirts with him, he’s too nervous to follow through. Bob decides he needs to be more bold if he wants to win his dream girl, but just as he’s gathering his courage to lure her back to his apartment, he suddenly finds himself entertaining an unexpected guest. Duska is an even geekier movie buff Bob met at a film festival in Russia , and he’s decided to take him up on his offer to let him stay at his flat if he’s ever in town. While Duska is cramping the style Bob is trying to develop, the larger problem is that his new houseguest seems to be planning a long-term visit and Bob doesn’t know how to get rid of him. Continue reading

Jos Stelling – The Gallery (2003)

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After winning top awards in Montreux, Utrecht, and St. Petersburg for THE WAITING ROOM, followed by the Grand Prix at the Mediawave festival in Györ (Hungary) for THE GAS STATION, Jos Stelling completed his Erotic Tales trilogy with THE GALLERY. Stylistically they’re all connected: each is narrated visually without dialogue, each makes merry fun of an embarrassing erotic fantasy in a public place, and each features the same likeable fall-guy – Belgian actor Gene Bervoets – as the hero always ready and willing to strut his manhood like a peacock in heat. In THE GALLERY Gene finds himself the sensual object of a beautiful woman’s desire. So when, suddenly and unexpectedly, she begins to strip for his pleasure … one good turn deserves another … (IMDb) Continue reading

Jos Stelling – The Gas Station (2000)

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During a traffic jam, a man flirts with another driver.

Jos Stelling (1945) made his debut as a director with Mariken van Nieumeghen in 1974. The film was selected for Cannes in 1975. Since then he has been writing and directing eight feature films. For his short film The Waiting Room (1996) Stelling was awarded a Golden Rose (Press Award) in Montreux, a Golden Gryphon in St. Petersburg as well as his fourth Gouden Kalf (GoldenCalf, the Dutch film award). Continue reading

Jos Stelling – De Wachtkamer AKA The Waiting Room (1995)

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From IMDB:
User Review

“O be careful little eyes what you see . . .”
19 October 2001 | by Timothy Damon

This director is simply incredible. I saw Jos Stelling’s film THE POINTSMAN some years ago, and I’m not sure I would have believed a feature length film without the spoken word could be made. But he did it, and it was great! So then, would a shorter film in the same format be easier to make? You might think so. But Mark Twain once remarked (paraphrased) that he could do a 2 hour speech on most any subject with little advance preparation, but to properly do a 15 minute speech might take at least a week to properly prepare. Regardless, he has a wonderful time in a train station, mostly in the waiting room. The camera is mainly on a Casanova of a man as his gaze goes well beyond the personal boundaries of the women he is, . . . well, to put it bluntly, lusting after. It reminded me of the cartoon postcard of a slick-talking guy next to a woman asking her “Do you mind if I undress you with my eyes?” and she is thinking {‘well, I guess it’s better than having you touch me”] Whether or not this guy knows he’s gone beyond the bounds of propriety I’ll leave to your contemplation. But his come-uppance is quite delightful. Continue reading

Alex van Warmerdam – Borgman (2013)

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Synopsis

One of the Netherlands’s most adventurous filmmakers, Alex van Warmerdam specializes in creepy, fractured riffs on folk tales, and acerbic, surreal analyses of contemporary European society. His latest, Borgman, opens with a tribe of strange nomads being driven from their elaborate network of underground shelters. Their ostensible leader, Borgman, approaches an upper-middle-class home and aggressively begs for money. The infuriated husband, Richard, responds by beating the stranger senseless in front of his appalled wife, Marina. Soon after, Borgman infiltrates their lives — and Marina’s dreams — while Richard begins exhibiting his own increasingly erratic and violent behaviour. Then, Borgman’s associates begin circling the house. While somewhat related to the recent home invasion sub-genre, Borgman is primarily about the tensions, both economic and racial, inherent in modern-day society — especially the psychosexual tensions that characterize the bourgeoisie. Richard can’t help but look at his wife or his children as his property. Marina initially seems quite happy with her function as a trophy mother, but the moment the facade starts to crack she’s more than willing to consider the better offer. Driving the narrative arc and intensifying the disturbing tone is van Warmerdam’s refusal to place his characters morally. The open-ended nature of his allegory makes it feel all the more contemporary and unsettling, and therefore genuinely worthy of that overused term, Kafkaesque. ~ tiff Continue reading