Monday, July 27, 2009

Paul Verhoeven's Spetters (1980)

Portraits of unheard young voices from Paul Verhoeven's Spetters (1980):

Rien #2

Rien is shown with Maya. He ditches his friends to make love to Maya in the middle of the night. Later that night, Rien professes his love to Maya. Rien is a fine competitor, riding on motorbikes, and focuses. An out-of-towner gives Rien two motorbikes, which are the beginning of the culmination of his dreams and the beginning of the ending of his life. A later act of celebration awakens Rien to his ending.

Gerrit Witkamp

Witkamp does. Gerrit is the local hero, who rides motorbikes, while everyone else is in the shadows. Witkamp “doesn’t even have to place first in order to win.” Gerrit’s competitors fall to the wayside outside of the race. Witkamp indulges his would-be competitors to make everyone laugh. While everyone celebrates for Witkamp, the surroundings are torn down and tumbled.

Eef #1

Eef, on his motorbike, is shown first, in the shadow of his father, riding on his tractor, who is in front of him and holding him up from going to work.

Hans #1

Hans is shown third, on his motorbike, while his father, who is behind him, is giving him a push to help him start.

Maya

Maya does. She works diligently at the grocery store, diligently loves Rien, and quietly sacrifices. When she is hurt by Rien who goes after Fientje, Maya turns to someone else. When Fientje is freed by Rien, Rien is hurt and Maya turns back to him. When Rien is freed, Maya returns to the same someone, again.

Rien #1

Rien is shown second in front of his father, who is working behind the bar. After asking for an advance on his paycheck and taking some bottles of beer, Rien leaves on his motorbike.

Eef #2

Eef is shown up dancing. He, and his friends, accosts two lovers in the middle of the night. Later that night, Eef is unable to make love. Eef is a fine mechanic, working on motorbikes, and wanders. An out-of-town trip with Hans allows Eef to spy two lovers, which awakens Eef to violence. A later act of violence awakens Eef to a lover.

Fientje

Fientje does. She works diligently at the french-fry stand, diligently looks for love, and loudly sacrifices. When she is hurt by most, Fientje turns to herself. When Fientje is freed by her hurt, she allows herself to be loved. When Hans performs a later act, Fientje is freed and returns to her heart.

Hans #2

Hans is shown up by a would-be lover. He accompanies his friends, accosts two lovers in the middle of the night, and gets ditched by one and his lover. Later that night, Hans pretends to make love. Hans is a poor competitor, riding on motorbikes, but hopes. An out-of-towner awakens Hans to love, which awakens Hans to what he has always wanted. A later act, in a sequence with two names in neon, ends the film.

4 comments:

Ed Howard said...

I love this movie, and your analysis gives a good indication of why: the way Verhoeven mines the ambitions and dreams of these lower-class kids whose only real hope of success is something like a miracle, being rocketed to a superstar status.

Neil Fulwood said...

Another one I've not seen and have now added to the rental queue. You seem to have hit upon an intriguing style of review here, focussing on character and presenting aspects of the film in vignette form.

Mr.LargePackage said...

Nice blog son. What's your name? You are large and in charge.

Hans A. said...

Thank you Ed for reading and commenting. It's quite an affecting film and was really eye-opening and touching.

Neil, I would be really curious to hear your thoughts on this film. It's quite possibly my favorite Verhoeven film, with Robocop being a slight second.

Mr. LP-- Murphy, sir!

Again, thnx for reading and commenting. I always appreciate it.