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Chennai gets a taste of Dutch fare

The on-going Dutch Film Festival at Chennai is screening a selection of five interesting films, says S. R. ASHOK KUMAR.

In "Left Luggage", Chaja comes to accept her Jewish heritage.

THE ON-GOING Dutch film festival (September 11 to 13), organised by the consulate General of the Netherlands, Mumbai and the Madras Film Society, is being held at the South Indian Film Chamber theatre.

Netherlands is a leading film producing country in Europe. Particularly their documentaries are always talked about. It was in 1907 that the first cinema opened in Amsterdam and the first film was "De Bannelingen" directed by Caroline Van Dommelen. The famous film production company Film Fabriek Hollandia, (Hollandia Film factory) started its production from 1912.

In 1931 the first Dutch sound film "Philips Radio" was made. After that it was more of documentaries and less of feature films. Netherlands' popular director Bert Haanstra got the maximum awards and was one of the leading filmmakers. Two directors, Paul Verhoeven and Jan de Bont, and actor Rutger Hauer are also known internationally.

The festival, inaugurated by V. Vijayakumar of the Netherlands Business support office (southern region) and at which Dr. Rathi Jafer, Manager, Arts and Culture (South India) of the British council division, Chennai, is the Chief Guest, opened with "Leak".

It isabout a young policeman, Eddy, and his informer who is also a drug dealer. One day Eddy meets his childhood friend Jack. Eddy turns Jack into a police informer. He tells them that Eddy will be his only contact. But after some time whatever information Jack gives goes wrong. Both cops and crooks look fortheleak in their group. The climax is engrossing. Directed by Jean Van De Velde the cast comprises Cas Jansen, Ricky Koole, Victor Low, Thomas Acda Giks Scholten Van Asschat.

Jeroen Krabbe directs "Left Luggage" with the cast of Laura Fraser, Adam Monty, Isabella Rossellini, Jeroen Krabbe and Maximilian Schell. Chaja, a young woman, refuses to accept her Jewish heritage. She is in search of a job. She is called to take care of three small boys born to Mrs. Kalman. At first she wants to refuse the nanny's job. But the four-year-old Simcha Kalman makes her change her mind. Soon she comes to know and understand all about the Jewish identity and her parents' way of life. But tragedy strikes, and the viewer too feels Chaja's pain in the climax.

Jean Van De Velde has directed "All Stars" with Antonie Kamerling, Danny De Munk, Daniel Boissevain and Peter Paul Muller. Successful businessman Bram is at own home every Sunday morning to play a game of football with his childhood friends. It is not only about football but also deals with various emotions. This is a completely different film from "Leak" although it is by the same director.

Dick Maas directs "Do Not Disturb" with Francesca Brown, William Hurt, Jennifier Tilly, Jason Merrells, Michael Chiklis, De Leary, Corey Hohnson, Chicael Goorijan and David Gwillim. An interesting film about an American girl Melisa who comes to Amsterdam with her parents. She cannot speak but can hear and answers them in sign language. Melisa, who witnesses a murder, tries to flee from the killers, who are after her.

"Character" is all about ambition and success.

"Character", directed by Mike Van Diem, won the Oscar in 1998. It has Fedja Van Huet, Jan Decleir, Betty Schuurman, Victor Low, Tamar Van Den Dop and Hans Kesting in the cast.

Kaldreuffe grows up without parental help or guidance. He vows to do better in life than his father. He works hard

and finally reaches the pinnacle of glory as a lawyer. In the bargain he is in the process of losing the girl who loves him. Doeshe get her back? One must see the film to know the end.

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