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Spetters (1980)

6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 3,352 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 36 critic

A Dutch film, post-Saturday Night Fever, which follows the lives of three young men who are amateur dirt-bike motorcycle racers. They each fall in love with a young woman who, with her ... See full summary »

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Title: Spetters (1980)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Hans van Tongeren ...
Rien
...
Fientje
Toon Agterberg ...
Eef
Maarten Spanjer ...
Hans
Marianne Boyer ...
Maya
Peter Tuinman ...
Jaap
Saskia van Basten-Batenburg ...
Truus (as Saskia Ten Batenburg)
Yvonne Valkenburg ...
Annette
Ab Abspoel ...
Rien's vader (as Albert Abspoel)
Rudi Falkenhagen ...
Hans' Vader
Hans Veerman ...
Eef's vader
Ben Aerden ...
Oude Homosexueel
Kitty Courbois ...
Doctor
Margot Keune ...
Meisje op bromfiets
Jonna Koster ...
Gerrit's vrouw
Edit

Storyline

A Dutch film, post-Saturday Night Fever, which follows the lives of three young men who are amateur dirt-bike motorcycle racers. They each fall in love with a young woman who, with her brother, sells French fries and hot dogs at the races. Everyone is looking for a better life. She wants out of the business and away from her brother. The motocross racers want to make their marks as professional racers, like their hero, played by Rutger Hauer. Written by Mark Logan <marklo@west.sun.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Sport

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 February 1980 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

Descontrol  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was heavily criticized in Holland. Many critics accused the film of being anti-women, anti-gay, anti-invalid, and anti-Chistian. They also called it devoid of morals and needlessly decadent. This criticism was one of the contributing factors in Paul Verhoeven's decision to begin making films in America rather than his native land. In fact, on the film's commentary track Verhoeven states that the reason he was not fazed by the negative criticism of his film Showgirls (1995) was because he'd already been through it with Spetters (1980). See more »

Goofs

During the first bike race which Hans (Maarten Spanjer) loses because his bike breaks down, he gets splattered with dirt/mud all over his white jersey. But when he is at the trailer getting food moments later, his jersey is free of mud and dirt. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sex at 24 Frames Per Second (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Eagle
Written by Björn Ulvaeus & Benny Andersson
Performed by ABBA
Courtesy of Polar Music
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Don't miss this one!
19 January 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I just saw this film last night and was really amazed by it. Unlike the Verhoeven films that most American audiences are familiar with (Robocop, Total Recall etc) it was a compelling coming of age piece set in Holland. Like most of his early Dutch films, you can feel many of the hallmarks of his style coming together and it's a testament to his skill as a director that he can make a small character-driven film about ordinary people like SPETTERS every bit as compelling as a gigantic special effects driven spectacle like ROBOCOP.

This is an 80's disco motocross movie that has very little disco and very little motocross. What it has are many strong characters, all of them navigating life transitions and trying to figure out their place in the world.

As for the "shocking" scenes that a lot of people are referring to in the posts, there is a fair amount of sex and nudity (male especially) in this film but to call it "shocking" is misleading. The reason the film's frank treatment of sexuality is so eye opening is the way Verhoeven handles it as no big deal. Two men sneak into a subway for a tryst, and you actually see one of the guys go down on the other guy. Two pairs of teenagers sneak into an abandoned building to have sex and you see it. Or when a man and a woman lay in bed talking after having sex, you see the guy totally naked as well as the girl. What happens happens and it's presented as is.

Verhoeven doesn't cut away from nudity, but at the same time doesn't artificially sexualize it by zooming in it, laying in sexy background music etc etc. Like the co-ed shower scene in STARSHIP TROOPERS, it's presented in a completely matter of fact way. Verhoeven doesn't allude to anything in these scenes, and it gives the film a power and honesty and that wouldn't be there otherwise.

Overall I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND this movie to anyone.

Bart Blackstone * Film Club Hollywood, CA


32 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
uncut version - what's in it? bryntilly
Was this set in Rotterdam or Amsterdam? bart-117
For the Americans, Spetters means .... Ike-NL
Why did Hans van Tongeren commit suicide? rams2
is this a good movie? opdiva
Why is this not rated x? fortwenty
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