European Tuesday – Zwartboek


Turn on your subtitles for European Tuesday 

More than half of the British voters would choose to leave the EU, if given the chance to take a part in a referendum. What we also know is that the British are too lazy to learn any other language.

But Film Forté wants you to leave these political issues behind and turn on your subtitles. We are going to introduce you every Tuesday to one of the greatest films from one of our 26 EU-friends.

This week
Zwartboek (Blackbook)
Country: The Netherlands
Producer: Paul Verhoeven
Actors: Carice van Houten, Thom Hofmann, Halina Reijn, Derek de Lint
Genre: Drama
Year: 2006

Because the whole family of the Jewish Rachael (Carice van Houten) gets murdered while they try to flee from Holland to Belgium, she decides to join the resistance. She infiltrates as the love of a high officer of the German army to get secret information and help to free prisoners.

Rachael is a beautiful, strong young woman. You could say she’s crazy as well. A few weeks after witnessing how her parents and brother cruelly got slaughtered she sings at a German party, a red flower in her hair. She flirts and sits on the lap of the officer who stole the jewellery of her mothers dead body.

Zwartboek is the first Dutch film director Paul Verhoeven made after living in Hollywood for twenty years. You definitely see the influence of his life there. The lighting and the narrative are more dramatic than you would expect from a Dutch film.

But there definitely still is some Dutch blood left in Mr Verhoeven’s directing. In the scene where Rachael dyes her hair blonde to look less Jewish, she doesn’t forget her pubic hair. “Ein Perfektionist”, grins the German officer when he finds out. And that’s definitely what Mr Verhoeven is. A perfectionist.


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