Qui vive is made with more or less the same cast and crew as the widely praised Leedvermaak (Polonaise, 1989) and is also based on a play by Judith Herzberg. The relations in a family ...
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Qui vive is made with more or less the same cast and crew as the widely praised Leedvermaak (Polonaise, 1989) and is also based on a play by Judith Herzberg. The relations in a family marked by war traumas remain complicated. Written by
If there's one thing people appreciate about the much lamented Godfather part three, it's being reunited with the Corleone family and seeing how each of the remaining members has grown older. This is also one of the Frans Weisz proudest accomplishments with his trilogy that started with 1989's 'Leedvermaak', ended with 2009's 'Happy End' and had it's middle part in the form of 2001's 'Qui Vive'. And since each film was made almost a decade apart from each other, they didn't have to put any great strain on the make-up department either. Well, not much anyway, even though the 8 year gap between part 2 and 3 is stretched to 18 years in the film.
While Leedvermaak was shot almost documentary style in and around the wedding of Nico (Piere Bokma) and Lea (Catherine ten Bruggencate), Qui Vive takes a note from Sunset Blvd. in that it starts with the death of one of the main characters (Ada) and then has her narrate the rest of the story in flashback. One pet peeve of mine is that although the film is supposed to be set in the Eighties, there is very little to remind the viewer of that time in the way of fashion, hairstyles or music. If they had just included some period props, loud sweaters or big hair, it would have made the period setting (for each installment in the trilogy) stand out that much more.
Nico's best friend Hans (Edwin de Vries), the perennial bachelor in the previous part, is now married to Pien (Ingeborg Loederman) and together they have a whole bunch of children (at least 4 or 5, I couldn't keep track) His other friend Alexander (Hugo Haenen), who is also Lea's ex, is still fooling around with video cameras every where he goes. Nico becomes obsessed with a series of letters his mother wrote during her last days in a concentration camp and takes an impromptu trip to the place of her death with his friends mentioned above.
Meanwhile, the women in the family are all upset about concert violinist Dory (Marjon Brandsma)'s pregnancy. Ada (Kitty Courbois) rightfully so because her husband Simon (Peter Oosthoek) fathered the much younger Dory's child and Lea is upset because she hasn't been able to conceive after a decade of marriage. Also still around is the woman who looked after young Lea and sheltered her from the Nazi's during the war: Riet (Annet Nieuwenhuyzen).
Even more so than Leedvermaak, Qui Vive is a character study, as each actor gets to explore his or her part and expand upon what they created in the first film. Each character goes through many mood swings which are for the most part delicately explained. However this does not exactly make it a fun experience for the viewer. It's all very dramatic and rather depressing really, but then second acts usually are. This makes one wonder if 'Happy End' will live up to it's title.
7 out of 10
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