Keetje Tippel (1975) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski) and Tuna
Two thumbs up, but with the qualifier that you have to like this kind of historical docudrama.
It's a Dutch movie. Round up the usual suspects.
Paul Verhoeven is directing. Rutger Hauer and Monique van de Ven star.
Actually, Verhoeven got in a little trouble with the Dutch Film Commission because he didn't have a role for Jeroen Krabbe.
As you may know, those were the only three Dutch-speaking actors in the universe at the time. Hauer and van de Ven actually had to play all the parts in this film, often changing wigs right in front of the camera.
OK, I'm kidding.
Although this is not at all a bad movie, it's actually one of the weaker entries among Verhoeven's later Dutch films. He made this one in between Turkish Delight and Soldier of Orange, both of which are far superior.
The film does have a lot of positives.
So what's wrong with it? Nothing. It is done well. Except that is pretty much of a docudrama. There is not much of a cinematic hook. The story tells her story in strict chronological order, drifting from her poverty, to her hatmaking, to prostitution, to her affair with a banker who had no intention of marrying her, to her emergence as a lady, to her involvement in a socialist demonstration, to her ultimate triumph as a rich woman. It is presented well, but I think you'll find it uninvolving unless you have some interest in this historical epoch. I had to fight off sleep.
If you aren't predisposed to be interested in the subject matter, it's a well photographed docudrama with very explicit male nudity, and some fairly explicit female nudity, including the beautiful van de Ven.
Tuna's comments in yellow
(1975) is a biopic based on a series of autobiographical works by Neel
Doof (1858 to 1942), who started to write late in life. She was then
living in Belgium, and the books were in French, as she was more
fluent by then in French than in her native Dutch. Her books were
praised for their absolute honesty in describing her early life, and
hence the life of the Dutch lower class at the start of the industrial
revolution under the monarchy. One of the things that makes this film
so interesting to me is that, true to Doof's honesty, the film is very
honest. It would have been easy to romanticize, and show the peasant
proletariat as friendly, good-natured, industrious and united against
tyranny. Paul Verhoeven recognized that some of the poor actually
react badly to a lifetime of abuse, and become unpleasant people.
This phenomenon occurs because the quantity written about a work
indicates an extreme of quality - good or bad. The rule is that the
quantity of prose declines as a film moves toward the center in
quality. There are more words written about Plan 9 from Outer Space
and Battlefield Earth than about Hoosiers, because they are farther
from the center, but there is more written about Schindler's List or
The Wizard of Oz than about Sleepless in Seattle, for the same reason
- distance from the center. In fact, a great outpouring of prose is
virtually prima facie evidence that a film can be found at one
extreme or the other.)
In a feature length commentary, Verhoeven explains that there were not many films being made in the Netherlands while he was there, and that he always used the same people because he was familiar with them, they were always available, and they were glad for the work. I find it a very well-made film, about a topic I find interesting. The grade, however, reflects cross-over appeal, and this film has little.
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