6.8/10
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Borgman (2013)

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A vagrant enters the lives of an arrogant upper-class family, turning their lives into a psychological nightmare in the process.

Director:

Alex van Warmerdam
11 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jan Bijvoet ... Camiel Borgman
Hadewych Minis ... Marina
Jeroen Perceval ... Richard
Alex van Warmerdam ... Ludwig
Tom Dewispelaere ... Pascal
Sara Hjort Ditlevsen ... Stine
Elve Lijbaart Elve Lijbaart ... Isolde
Dirkje van der Pijl Dirkje van der Pijl ... Rebecca
Pieter-Bas de Waard Pieter-Bas de Waard ... Leo
Eva van de Wijdeven Eva van de Wijdeven ... Ilonka
Annet Malherbe ... Brenda
Gene Bervoets ... Gardener
Mike Weerts Mike Weerts ... Arthur Stornebrink
Pierre Bokma ... Priest
Benjamin Boe Rasmussen Benjamin Boe Rasmussen ... Man with Dog
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Storyline

A priest and his companion hunt silently through the fields, accompanied by a braying dog. They are armed and deadly. Their quarry is Camiel Borgman (Jan Bijvoet), living in military sparseness in an underground den, near companions Ludwig and Pascal. Camiel scrapes out with some difficulty, hitching a ride with a doomed truck driver on a relentless trip to the heart of suburbia. He passes by two odd women, Brenda and Ilonka, with whom he seems to share a history. When a dirty Camiel arrives at the door of artist Marina and media executive Richard's expansive, designer-chic home, the shifting perceptions of Van Warmerdam's screenplay begin to displace and disorient the audience. Hallucinogenic elements dot the consciousness as Camiel shifts between the roles of victim and aggressor. He asks for a bath. He toys with Richard's jealousy. He is viciously beaten up by his cruelly intolerant host and left wounded on the floor. Marina seeks to assuage her guilt by allowing him a space for ... Written by lament

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The perfect cross between Dogtooth and Michael Haneke.


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Netherlands | Belgium | Denmark

Language:

Dutch | English

Release Date:

29 August 2013 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Bela See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

€3,100,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

€77,448 (Netherlands), 1 September 2013, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,224, 20 June 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$56,474, 25 July 2014
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Graniet Film BV,NTR,Epidemic See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (HD)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 2013 this movie became the first Dutch movie in 38 years to be selected for the Cannes Film Festival. See more »

Goofs

After Camiel Borgman starts the chainsaw to cut down a tree, the chainsaw is clearly not running. See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with the caption: And they descended upon the earth to strengthen their ranks. See more »

Connections

Features Jungle Book (1942) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Metaphysical absurdism in a grippingly tense film
14 November 2013 | by bartverberne16See all my reviews

'Borgman' tells the story of a drifter (Jan Bijvoet) that slowly but suddenly takes control of the lives of a young, wealthy family living in a beautiful mansion somewhere in the Netherlands. The movie begins with a scene in a forest, where Borgman, i.e. the drifter, and some of his associates are chased from their underground hiding places by a group of holy workers (lead by the-always-inspiring Pierre Bokma). Soon after their escape, Borgman alone seemingly randomly knocks on the doors of the houses of very wealthy people, asking if he can use bathing facilities in their house. In attempt to do good after a brutal beating by her husband (Jeroen Perceval), Marina (Hadewijch Minis) helps Borgman by giving him temporary shelter in the garden shed. That was all that the intimidating but darkly intriguing character of Borgman needed to unfold his diabolical plans...

Although Borgman is a layered surrealistic film, and probably therefore sometimes slow and hard to understand, its message is clear and the story is continuously compelling. Especially intriguing are the biblical aspects, which are always subtly present in the background, and which give the film a dark, tense character. Not being a religious person, the movie does trigger an interest in the spiritual, or better, meta-ethics, which won't leave you alone for several days afyer having watched it. The excellent performances of Jan Bijvoet and Hadewijch Minis are crucial in delivering the very strong script.

I highly recommend this film to anyone who seeks a tense thriller. Because, aside from the absurdist aspects, from start to the end the movie is very exciting.

8/10


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