|Index||3 reviews in total|
The name "overspel" (adultery) may a bit misleading. It made me suspect
that this was going to be some female-oriented cliché-ridden drama.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
There are many characters here all of which are equally important. The plot revolves around their relations with each other. Couwenberg is boss of a construction business, then an accident happens that puts the relationships of everyone in the series under pressure. Step by step the plot moves forward and gets more intricate and intriguing every episode. Adultery is only a small part of the problems emerging for every person in this mess. The characters are completely real and believable six episodes in and not once have I been disturbed by a stupid cliché or unreal irrational actions by the characters. They act as any sane man or woman does in their situation.
With a plot so much based on characters, the acting has to be top-notch, and I'm delighted to say that it absolutely is. Rarely have I seen such strong performances from Dutch actors. Add in the brilliant directing and grim cinematography and you've got a series that gets more compelling with every scene. The 6th and latest episode was the absolute highpoint for me. It ended with a music compilation lasting many minutes on Deep Purple's Child in Time and was absolutely masterly executed. One of the best directed pieces I've ever seen.
Overspel is gripping, compelling, well written, wonderfully acted, even better directed, and fit for every single audience, even kids if they're into this sort of thing. Perhaps watching the full season with the entire family at Christmas is a perfect family bonding activity for many.
After having watched all twelve episodes of this Dutch television
series, it is obvious to me that this series is one of the best Dutch
television series of the last decade: well written, very good acting
(espcially by Sylvia Hoeks and Kees Prins) and beautiful
cinematography. In "Overspel" the storyline and the development of the
characters are more important than fast action scenes. Even though
"Overspel" can't reach the extremely high level of the Danish series
"The Killing" (a.k.a. Forbrydelsen), I can very much recommend it. For
non Dutch readers who have become curious and would like to watch it:
the DVD-release has English subtitles.
Addition after watching season 2. Season 2 of Overspel is again of very high quality and the acting is, like in season 1, on a very high level. Especially Kees Prins and Ramsey Nasr are sublime as father and son Couwenberg. Of course Sylvia Hoeks plays her character Iris very convincing too. The tension in season 2 is increasing from episode 1 until the final episode 10. I will not go into further detail, but I've enjoyed every second of this season a lot. I'm looking forward to the 3rd season, which has been filmed already (if I'm well informed), or is in the process of being filmed. Can't wait!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Great cast? Fedja van Huet, Kees Prins, Rifka Lodeizen...Check! Decent script? Check! It is good enough for the USA to make a remake of it so it is nothing to sneeze at. How ever, the best dutch series ever made in the same league was Pleidooi and 9Dagen van de Gier which are both hard to match. This is pretty good though. It has it all, Prins is phenomenal, Van Huet is the usual genuine for-real-guy and Nasr's part of sweet dufus with an edge. Nothing wrong with it. For 90% of the time it is a good watch. Sometimes, just sometimes, though Hoeks character Iris gets irritating with the custody situation and the nagging. I guess the adulterous relationship (which it is named after) gets kind of tedious. The reality of the court and the police investigations is superb. Just rarely there is a hint of Spijkerhoek quality twists (Yup I said it) Guns in court, overly hysterical teens and general tantrums with excessive swearing...Tsk tsk, gets old. Maybe I adjust my review after seeing season 2. Lets see. It's just not Pleidooi....
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