Near the end of World War II, 14-year-old Michiel becomes involved with the Resistance after coming to the aid of a wounded British soldier. With the conflict coming to an end, Michiel ... See full summary »
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Carice van Houten,
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Near the end of World War II, 14-year-old Michiel becomes involved with the Resistance after coming to the aid of a wounded British soldier. With the conflict coming to an end, Michiel comes of age and learns of the stark difference between adventure fantasy and the ugly realities of war. Written by
Pusan International Film Festival
Director Martin Koolhoven has talked in interviews about how some spaghetti westerns influenced the movie. The introduction of Ben (played by Yorick van Wageningen) is similar to the introduction of Cheyenne (played by Jason Robards)in Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) in the sense that the lead first hears the approaching character, which has a mystifying effect. Then the character is seen, but his eyes are covered by their hat, through a movement of the head of the actor, the eyes of the character is shown, completing the mythologizing effect. Koolhoven has also talked about the influence of The Great Silence (1968) and A Man Called Blade (1977) on the movie. See more »
When the boy opens the suitcase in the attic, he pulls out a Browning HighPower pistol with Pachmayr Signature rubber grips. The grips would be wood or hard plastic. Pachmayr grips would be made in the United States post WWII. See more »
Nice film. Pretty much on this film is for the very good grade: camera, which is pure 10, acting and the story. The story brings the convincing picture of the kid during the time of war. This is how that probably looks like. No absolute good or bad, just problems, sense of pure childish honor and duty, and pain over all. This is about how my father tells me on WWII Occupation as he was the kid of that age back then. What I don't like about this film are the trivial shots which are kind of camera pleonasm. If somebody is wondering about something, there is no need to shoot him a whole minute just to express the very same feeling with no oscillation at all. This is for the art film. Instead of wasting the time on showing a person going up the whole 24 stairs making the movie slow, use most of that time to develop the minor characters: mother, sister, father and what is most important in this particular film - uncle Ben. The way his character fits into the hesitations of the growing up human profile of the strong kid is perfect; however, we don't have enough information to observe a picture that the main character fatally developed about him which makes his thoughts and motives pretty much unclear. All in all, pursuit towards excellence brings to this movie 6 out of 10 from my side.
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