Shades is a film about (imaginary) Belgian serial killer Freddy Lebecq which producer Max Vogel, a former lawyer, is determined to make into an internationally co-produced, relatively big ... See full summary »
Shades is a film about (imaginary) Belgian serial killer Freddy Lebecq which producer Max Vogel, a former lawyer, is determined to make into an internationally co-produced, relatively big budget-production Hollywood style, with a director from the States. To that end he cuts deals with and often behind the backs of just about everybody, including Lebeq -who has the book rights-, his lawyer who hopes to use proceeds donated to the relatives to facilitate early release, even the victims, always trying to get the media circus to yield priceless publicity. However not only the lead actor proves a loose canon, even Lebecq ends up killing his lawyer and escaping, when he believes the movie is hurting his case ... Written by
Director Erik Van Looy is an avid RAFC supporter (a club in Belgian second division) and he likes to mention this in interviews and put tiny references in his movies (in "De Zaak Alzheimer" for example he made Gene Bervoets whistle the club anthem). In Shades you hear an announcement over the car radio saying the first (new) derby between RAFC and rival club Germinal Beerschot ended 3-0. Wishful thinking on the part of Van Looy as it turned out, because the game (played in 2000) ended 1-2. See more »
This film was shot in my home town, the main reason I went to see it. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. While certainly not a masterpiece, 'Shades' is a treat for two reasons : its mild albeit funny comment on the film industry and its unashamed 'American' approach. Its main aim is to entertain, and if it manages to work on quite a few levels along the way, who's gonna complain? A smart blend of fact and fiction, it focuses on the filming of the life of serial killer Freddy Lebeck -who, as Belgian viewers may note, looks an eerie lot like real-life mass murderer Freddy Horion. He, for one, is famous for never taking of his shades. Slick and fast-paced direction makes for a flashy thriller, and although no-one in it will be winning an Oscar any time soon, the many jokes and winks will help to hold your attention until the very end -which, I will reveal, is pretty original in comparison to what Belgian cinema has been calling conclusions lately. Add to this the admirable quality to poke fun at itself, and it's perfect for a rainy day.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?