7.4/10
7,923
10 user 57 critic

De helaasheid der dingen (2009)

13-year-old Gunther Strobbe grows up surrounded by alcohol, trash and his completely useless father and uncles. Slowly but surely, he's being prepared for the same hapless life. Can he defy his destiny?

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel) | 1 more credit »
7 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kenneth Vanbaeden ...
Valentijn Dhaenens ...
...
Celle
...
Petrol
...
Breejen
...
Koen
Gilda De Bal ...
Meetje
...
Rosie
Pauline Grossen ...
Sylvie
Sofie Palmers ...
Vriendin Gunther
Guy Dermul ...
Directeur school
Jos Geens ...
André
Robbie Cleiren ...
Deurwaarder
Sara De Bosschere ...
Nele Fockedey
Wout Kelchtermans ...
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Storyline

In Reetveerdegem (English would be Arsefeatherham), a fictitious derelict hamlet near run-down industrial city Aalst (Alost), five debt-burdened drop-out Strobbe brothers move back in with their pensioned mother 'Meetje', still wasting their lives in dead-end jobs, alcohol, gambling and meaningless sex. Celle also took in, as if their baby brother, his son Gunther. Nobody expects the knave (13) to grow up and become a respectable citizen either, despite his better IQ and attitude, as his uncles' and father's mischief and reputation seem to sabotage every single opportunity. Discovering love may motivate him after all, or accidental paternity could drag him down to father's level. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

9 April 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Shittiness of Things  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The official Belgian submission for the 2010 Academy Awards. See more »

Goofs

When Gunther is at the age of 13, there are trains in gray style passing in different scenes. But the new gray version was first introduced in the late 90's. See more »

Connections

Referenced in L'incertitude des choses (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Always surprising Belgium
5 January 2010 | by (France) – See all my reviews

I saw this movie yesterday. I was drawn to it because it won the golden Amphora at the "Festival de Quend du film grolandais", an independent movie festival. Seeing the film poster with naked hairy guys cycling, I knew that I would have some fun but how far will they go? In fact, the movie alternates quite hilarious scenes with drunk people with more dramatic sequences. With this consideration, the movie is finally closer to English dramedies that are used to show working class characters and, finally, whatever strange they are, you feel some sympathy for those guys. It's quite comforting to see people who don't care about the others (or perhaps even about anything) but you also see that there are consequences. For sure, this movie is not about preventing the audience from drinking or about giving any lesson. Following the story of Gunther, you just follow the day to day life of a hillbilly family with its ups and downs (a little more ups in the movie). Like they say in "Les cahiers du cinema", Felix van Groeningen makes you love and care for these model people in the same manner as John Cassavetes was able to do. In a nutshell, go and see it (except if you are a feminist of course).


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