Karst van der Meulen's final family film which was also broadcast as a TV series in an extended version two years after it's cinema release. Herman van Veen plays an inventor called Drost, but the movie revolves around his three children Rogier, Chantal & Jeroen, as well as their friend Nicky. Together they have been building a full size rocket in the backyard with leftover pieces from their father's workshop. Their plan is to use fireworks to propel their space capsule into the atmosphere. Unfortunately this time around the children are hardly up to the task of carrying the picture, especially not Maurice Beeke who, as Jeroen, gets the most screen time.
Nearby, but unknown to our would be astronauts, a movie company has been filmed (just like there was in Van der Meulen's Martijn & De Magiër) from which at first a dog escapes (Jeroen finds it but is not allowed to keep the canine). Then an unsympathetic stuntman (Toon Agterberg) wonders into the Drost Backyard, and climbs into the rocket, inadvertently sets off the fireworks, causing the machine to lift off and crash, and giving himself amnesia in the process. Naturally Jeroen wants to keep this 'spaceman' as well after finding him in the downed rocket.
The children start calling their new friend with no memory 'UFO' and both they are him are startled to find he is carrying a gun and 50 million in Dutch guilders in his leather jacket. Although mother and father Drost (Herman and Saskia van Batenburg in undemanding parts) don't catch wind of their 'extra-terrestrial' visitor, nosy neighbor Veldhuis (André van den Heuvel who is constantly wearing a hat) does. And since he's been trying to find a way to get the family Drost off his property anyway, he starts to make things very difficult for all concerned. Eventually even his nephew Marcel turns against him and sides with UFO and the others.
But UFO decides to take off on his own rather than be arrested and somehow ends facing an escaped tiger as well as half the Dutch army. Of course it all ends well as soon as he receives another bump on the head, reversing his amnesia but miraculously retaining his newfound pleasant personality. Either he wasn't such a bad guy after all or the combined head-bumps made him into a much nicer person.
All in all it's not exactly a Karst van der Meulen classic, which might explain why he gave up the movie business and decided to concentrate on something much more worthwhile: taking care of stranded seals with his wife Lenie 't Hart in Pieterburen.
6 out of 10
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