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Amsterdamned (1988)

R  |   |  Action, Horror, Thriller  |  25 November 1988 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 4,619 users  
Reviews: 47 user | 29 critic

A mysterious diver hiding in Amsterdam's canal system embarks on a rampage of gruesome murders, terrifying city officials and leaving few clues for the city's best detective, who doesn't ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Eric Visser
Monique van de Ven ...
Serge-Henri Valcke ...
Tanneke Hartzuiker ...
Wim Zomer ...
John van Meegeren
Hidde Maas ...
Martin Ruysdael
Lou Landré ...
Tatum Dagelet ...
Anneke Visser
Edwin Bakker ...
Door van Boeckel ...
Maniac (as Door van Boekel)
Barbara Martijn ...
Pieter Lutz ...
Simone Ettekoven ...
Koos van der Knaap ...
First Environmentalist
Pieter Loef ...
Second Environmentalist


A mysterious diver hiding in Amsterdam's canal system embarks on a rampage of gruesome murders, terrifying city officials and leaving few clues for the city's best detective, who doesn't suspect that both his new girlfriend and twelve-year-old daughter may be closer than he is to finding the killer. Written by Blue Dragon <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The danger lies just below the surface See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| | |

Release Date:

25 November 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amsterdamned  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


During the boat chase they pass a ship with a brass band. The conductor of this band is played by Bert Haanstra, the award winning director of several films. One of his most famous is Fanfare, in which boats with bands play an important role. See more »


The great chase-scene starts in Amsterdam, then suddenly leads through the Canals of Utrecht, and then back to Amsterdam again. See more »


Vermeer: What do you think she meant when she said a huge black monster with giant claws?
Eric Visser: I don't know, but I hope your mother-in-law has an alibi.
Vermeer: UGH!
See more »


Referenced in We zijn weer thuis: Schrijven en wrijven (1991) See more »


Performed by Lois Lane
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Very, very good slasher movie that makes the most of a good budget...

Being that I was born in Sevilla of Spanish heritage, studied in Moscow, currently reside in England and speak Russian/Polish/Spanish and English fluently, you could say that I am somewhat culturally blessed. But when I'm not at home in Spain, you can usually find me enjoying the company and astonishing beauty of Polish women in Krakow or relaxing somewhere in the Netherlands. I love everything about Amsterdam. From its rich and tranquil canal based landscapes to its friendly and welcoming inhabitants, (that's not mentioning its wealth of world class soccer stars) you truly haven't lived until you've been there. That's why I was infinitely excited when I learnt that Holland had created its own addition to my favourite cinema sub-genre – a Dutch slasher movie! You read it right; Amsterdamned manages to mix the B-movie bliss of a masked psychopath with the cultural trademarks of my summer break paradise. And the best thing about it is that it's actually an amster-damned good movie (Apologies for the pun)…

It opens with a cool credit sequence that mixes some brilliant underwater photography with an eerie horror soundtrack that was provided by director Dick Maas. The shot pans along the riverbanks as a yet unidentified predator stalks its prey. It's almost like Jaws in a canal, as we watch the camera emerge from the murky depths, scan the area and then move on to another location. Next we cut to a prostitute flagging down a taxi later that same night. After an amusing bust up with the randy driver, the hooker is left walking the back streets to find her way home. Before she even has a chance to begin her journey, a dark figure raises out of the canal and repeatedly stabs her with a large blade. The killer, leaving a streaming trail of blood behind him, then drags her corpse into the river and disappears into a mass of bubbles. The following morning, the woman is discovered hanging upside down from a bridge and dripping with blood by a boat that's filled with tourists. That scene launches a terrific flair for subtle pitch black humour from the director, which continues throughout the movie.

Next up we meet Detective Eric Visser (Huub Stapel); a hard-boiled Dirty Harry-alike who is immediately put on the case of the bizarre killings. After a vital clue is found at the scene of the second slaughter, the Police seem convinced that the maniac is a diver and begin checking out all the local clubs and stores. Whilst following that lead, Eric meets Laura (Monique Van de Ven), a beautiful artist who is keen to help him crack the case. Meanwhile the body count is rising and the town mayor wants this killer caught. Can Visser track down this maniacal madman? Or will the killer find him first…?

Amsterdamned is probably one of the best slasher movies to be released towards the end of the eighties. Boasting a superb script ("What does she mean a big black monster with huge claws?" "I don't know but your mother-in-law better have a good alibi!"), some stunning photography, a great cast of characters and an extremely talented director; this is truly a great advertisement for Dutch cinema. It's not really a teen-slasher in the hackneyed Friday the 13th mould. Instead it's best described as a slasher/murder-mystery/thriller, which makes the most of being part of each category. The first thing I noticed was that Amsterdamned was extremely well financed even compared to its American brethrens. How many hack and slash flicks have you seen that have included a town-wide motorcycle chase AND a colossal boat pursuit in the same feature? Dick Maas did an extremely good job of making his movie stand out from the mediocrity that had engulfed the cycle this late into its rein.

Even though it is not famed for it's extreme gore, there's enough gooey corpses floating about (literally) to keep the bloodhounds interested. It's also competently written, which means that you won't have worked out the psychopath's identity when he is unmasked at the conclusion. The body count is fairly high and most of the murders are carried out creatively, whilst trying to pack in as much suspense and intrigue as possible. My favourite would have to be the underwater battle between the killer and an unsuspecting Police diver. The whole scene is filmed aboard a submerged boat and the claustrophobic tension is superbly executed. Unfortunately, Amsterdamned was yet another victim of poor dubbing for international broadcast, which means that the voice-overs sound like a consignment of English speaking foreigners from everywhere else BUT Holland! It's impossible for me to rate the cast's performances because I own the dubbed version, but I've heard that they're pretty poor from the supporting actors anyway.

This is wholly recommended to slasher fans across the globe. It's extremely well financed, boasts some snappy dialogue, superb direction, a cool killer costume and even a enjoyably cheesy theme tune; how can you argue with that. The boat chase alone is worth the budget purchase price. I'll be keeping a close eye on the Dutch movie-market to see if they bless the slasher genre once more with such credible output. Make sure you give this one a go…

18 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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how do you rate this one? lucvicious
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