Sam works as a security guard in a shopping centre. The 22nd of May looks as if it’s going to be a day like any other: the forty-something drags himself to work; he shows someone the way and throws out a tramp. But when he stands outside smoking a cigarette, fate strikes. In the shopping centre, a boy with a rucksack blows himself up. And Sam didn’t notice. Or did he?
The Flemish Koen Mortier made a spectacular debut four years ago with Ex Drummer, based on work by Herman Brusselmans and included in the Tiger Award competition. 22nd of May, partly shot in Rotterdam, is both radical and idiosyncratic, yet totally different in many ways.
The camera stays close to Sam, as if Mortier wants to get inside his head, and the music by Michael Gallagher is moody and effective. Slowly but surely, Sam loses his grip on reality, overwhelmed by guilt feelings. And the viewer loses it along with him. 22nd of May is at once an impressive drama and a moving character study.

International title
22nd of May
Filmmaker
Koen Mortier
Country
Belgium
Year
2010
Medium
35mm
Length
88’
Language
Dutch
Producer
Eurydice Gysel, Koen Mortier, Marc Bary, Raymond van der Kaaij
Production Company
CCCP/Epidemic, IJswater Films, Revolver Amsterdam
Sales
Reel Suspects
Writer
Koen Mortier
Cinematography
Glynn Speeckaert
Editor
Nico Leunen
Production Design
Geert Paredis
Sound Design
Lars Ginzel
Music
Michael Gallagher
Cast
Sam Louwyck
Website
http://www.22mei.be