It is impolite to compare a new film with the work of other film makers in a catalogue presentation. That is more the privilege of the critic. As an exception, however, this text does mention that the young and talented Martijn Maria Smits has strayed into the territory of the Dardenne Bros. Certainly literally: this film was shot in Seraing, the small and melancholy town in the Belgian province of Liege that seemed to be the exclusive working terrain of Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne. Smits also tackles themes akin to the Dardennes in a realistic way. But alongside 'Dardennes' there is also a lot of 'Smits' in this film.
His film portrays a family in that melancholy Seraing. If the word 'family' is right for these people, who live coldly and misunderstood side-by-side. The style is extremely realistic - the locations and characters are actually documentary. The father is ashamed of his unemployment. His daughter has a baby by one of her friends. He is now in jail, so she'll have to make do with someone else anyway. And then there's a little boy whose name is Eric and who turns out to be an endearing protagonist. His father is already out of the story. Eric skips school and messes with mopeds and fake guns. At certain point, even with a real gun.



Filmmaker
Martijn Maria Smits
Premiere
World premiere
Country
Netherlands, Belgium
Year
2010
Medium
Betacam Digi PAL
Length
85’
Language
French
Producer
Annemiek van Gorp, René Goossens, Joseph Rouschop
Production Company
De Productie, Tarantula
Sales
De Productie
Writer
Bastiaan Kroeger, Martijn Maria Smits
Cinematography
Benito Strangio
Editor
Axel Skovdal Roelofs
Production Design
Laurie Colson
Sound Design
Jaap Hermans
Cast
Benjamin Willem, Julie Anson, Patrick Descamps
Website
http://www.deproductie.nl