Ciske the Rat
Original title: Ciske de Rat
11-year-old Amsterdam schoolboy Ciske, a scamp with a heart of gold, causes havoc in the classroom pouring ink over his teacher. Yet when a polio-crippled boy joins the class Ciske is one of the only children to befriend him and is bullied as a result. His mother works in a bar and Ciske helps out often late into the night - his father is at sea and his mother supplements her income with prostitution. Ciske also smolders with rage at life's injustices. —kabouter <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A Charming Scamp
A lonely outcast boy, mistreated by his slutty mother and her boyfriends and missing his adored but often absent seaman father, gets into a series of scrapes with the law including a short prison term. Curiously for a film of this sort, one of Ciske's most sympathetic observers is the local police commissioner (he's one of those who calls Ciske "Rat") who knows him well and is aware of his home life--after all, he's escorted him there often enough. Another supporter is a teacher at school who sees Ciske befriending weaker boys and decides to become his guardian. Ciske is a tough nut, but he has an appealing personality and Danny de Munk makes him seem real. Despite his troubles Ciske remains upbeat and is a charming scamp. Danny was a well-known boy singer at the time, and is heard singing over the opening credits as well as during a scene in class. Nevertheless, he was willing to film a scene in the nude. He was 13 when the film was made, and grew up to become a singing star, appearing in many stage musicals. The film is based on a Dutch classic book and is a remake of a 1955 black-and-white version.
- May 23, 2003
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