They’ll never seize to be made are they now; world war 2 movies. Just look at the past decade; Clint brought us two, Michael Bay did Pearl Harbor, Paul Verhoeven gave us Zwartboek/Blackbook, from Germany came Der Untergang/Downfall, Edward Zwick brought us Defiance and that’s just a small part of the staple. Somehow those few years seem to be more inspiring than say World War I or the Vietnam War.
So here’s the Dutch tale of a young boy, named Michiel, living in wartime. His father is the mayor of the village so he needs keep amends with everybody; natives and occupiers. That kind of behaviour isn’t respected by his son who sees the war partially as an adventure but also wants his father to stand up against the Germans. One night he sees a plane crash nearby and the next morning he goes on a scavenger hunt to see if he can find anything useful or just cool from the wreckage. Through a series of events from this point on he comes in contact with the survivor of the plane crash; an english pilot who is hiding underground in the woods. Now Michiel will help him get into safety which is more dangerous than he could ever start to imagine. It’s not a game anymore and simply having a wonderful winter time is out of the question.
Oorlogswinter is a thrilling movie. I enjoyed it and thought it was very exciting. A young boy has to deal with adult decisions over the course of the winter of 1944 and it was handled well. What starts out as an adventure will become a fight of life and death. What it does toy with nicely is the “who can you trust” aspect of the story. The NSB-neighbour seems less untrustworthy than one might expect and people claiming to be part of the resistance can have their own agenda. This heightens up the tension a lot. The acting is nicely done. although nothing flashy. The cast constists of people from different countries playing people from that same country. I like that a lot, it brings a lot of authenticity. Something lacking in American movies where foreigners are mostly played by Americans doing an accent. That sucks…
You probably don’t have to go out and rent it, it will be on TV around every 4th or 5th of may in the Netherlands. If you’re not residing there you should give it a try. You won’t be dissapointed.