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Kristin Scott Thomas,
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Carice van Houten,
A very nice movie with a subject that no Hollywood movie would dare to show
Just like Belgium, the Netherlands don't have a very big and famous movie industry, but from time to time they really are capable of making an excellent movie. That's why I taped this movie when it was shown on Dutch national television. I had never heard of it before, but seeing that Jan Decleir - probably Belgium's finest, still living actor - played a role in it and because I'm very interested in all European movies, I didn't hesitate to give this movie a try.
"De Passievrucht" tells the story of a man who finds out that his son isn't really his son when the doctor tells him that he has been infertile during his entire life. Since his first wife, and the mother of their son, died nine years ago, he can't ask her who did it. But consumed by anger and sadness, he decides to go after the real father himself. As he goes from one possible culprit to another, he forgets that he isn't the only person in the family. His new girlfriend and his 'son' are the victims of his egoistic behavior and when he finally finds out who did this to him, the surprise couldn't be bigger...
Except for Jan Decleir and Halina Reijn, I can't think of any other actor in this movie that I've heard of before. They are all a complete mystery to me and I'm sure that I've never seen them play in another movie, but that certainly doesn't mean that they didn't do it well in this one. I really appreciated the performances of Peter Paul Muller, Carice van Houten,... and I'll certainly try to see another one of their movies if I ever get the chance. The same for the director. He too is a complete stranger to me, but with this movie he proves to have talent. That shows for instance in the excellent use of flashbacks. He never uses them too much, but knows perfectly how to switch between the now and the past.
What I also liked, next to the good acting, was the original idea behind the story: how many men raise a child that isn't really theirs and how do they react when they find out the truth? That's a subject that I've never found in any Hollywood production, but it's one that is much closer to reality than some people want to believe. Not that I'm surprised to find it in a European instead of an American movie. It just doesn't belong to the perfect image of family happiness that Hollywood wants to portray. Over here, the movie makers dare to step out of that perfect world, just like Maarten Treurniet did with this movie, and I really appreciate that a lot.
All in all this is a movie that deserves to be seen by a much larger audience. It may not always be perfect, but overall the story is good, the emotions are realistic and the acting more than just worth a watch. I really liked this movie and that's why I give it at least a 7.5/10
13 of 14 people found this review helpful.
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