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Film Review: ‘The Little Gangster’

2 February 2016 12:56 AM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

A clever Dutch family comedy, “The Little Gangster” finds our grade-school hero managing to escape constant bullying by convincing his classmates — and an entire neighborhood — that his milquetoast father is in fact a Mafia don. Those who expect kid pics to have a constructive message might take exception to this one’s apparent takeaway that a little intimidation can be a good thing, so long as you really mean no harm (and target only actual bullies). For everyone else, Arne Toonen’s slick feature will go down easy as an entertaining, neatly plotted comedy that could tempt limited offshore specialty sales and remake bids.

Motherless Rikkie Boskamp (Thor Braun) wishes he had a “cool” father — certainly not one like bespectacled accountant Paul (Henry van Loon), who seems permanently depressed and distracted. Paul is so passive that even his status as a grieving widower doesn’t spare him co-workers’ cruel practical jokes. »

- Dennis Harvey

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1 item from 2016


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