Black Book (2007)

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Genre: Dramas
Director: Paul Verhoeven - Dutch Director, ROBOCOP (1990), BASIC INSTINCT (1992)
Theatrical Release: 2007
Rated: R (MPAA)
Length: 145 mins
Studio: Sony Pictures Home
Format: Blu-ray Disc
Language: English

Dutch filmmaker Paul Verhoeven made his name in Hollywood with films such as ROBOCOP, BASIC INSTINCT, and STARSHIP TROOPERS. But Verhoeven got his start in the industry by making films (the acclaimed SPETTERS and SOLDIER OF ORANGE among them) in his native country, and it's to Holland that he returns for BLACK BOOK--his first Dutch film in 20 years. The story is set during the final days of World War II in Holland, and follows a Jewish singer named Rachel Stein (Carice Van Houten). Rachel attempts to avoid the Nazis and remains in quiet hiding until her family is brutally slain, causing her to join up with a resistance movement. On a subsequent undercover mission, Rachel crosses paths with a smitten German general named Ludwig Muntze (Sebastian Koch), with whom Rachel begins a relationship in order to feed vital information back to her colleagues in the resistance. But as the action and bloodshed escalate, Rachel realizes that she has genuine feelings for Muntze, and soon she is in enormous danger. <BR><BR>Verhoeven's film is wildly ambitious and takes many intriguing twists and turns during its 145 minutes. BLACK BOOK commanded the largest budget of any film to be produced in Holland, and it shows. Explosions litter the screen, plenty of car chases ensue, and wince-inducing injuries and deaths propel the action. The director isn't afraid to criticize his fellow countrymen and inserts a fascinating subtext about the actions of the resistance fighters, asking some uncomfortable questions about the similarities between their behavior and that of the Nazis. Van Houten lights up the screen throughout and is surely destined for bigger things, and while the tumultuous experiences her character undergoes might push the boundaries of reality at times, Verhoeven has pointed out in interviews that Rachel is a composite character who encompasses the merged experiences of many real people from the era.;

Language Usage   Original
Release Language   Dutch
Color   Color
HiFi Sound   N
Surround Sound   N
Digital Sound   N
Stereo Sound   N
CXEncoding   N
AC3Sound   N
THXSound   N
DTSStereo   N
Unedited Version   N
Collector's Edition   N
Director's Cut   N
Closed Captioned   N
Letterboxed   N
Rating Reason   for some strong violence, graphic nudity, sexuality and language.
Derek De Lint -
Thom Hoffman - British actor, ORLANDO
Paul Verhoeven - Dutch Director, ROBOCOP (1990), BASIC INSTINCT (1992)
Paul Verhoeven - Dutch Director, ROBOCOP (1990), BASIC INSTINCT (1992)
Karl Walter Lindenlaub - Director of Photography
Anne Dudley -
Gerard Soeteman - Screenwriter - TURKISH DELIGHT
Christian Berkel - Actor, DAS EXPERIMENT (2002)
Sebastian Koch - Actor, THE TUNNEL (2005)
Carice Van Houten - Actress In UNDERCOVER KITTY
Halina Reijn - Star, BLACK BOOK (2007)
Michiel Huisman - Star, BLACK BOOK (2007)
Peter Blok - Star, BLACK BOOK (2007)
San Fu Maltha - Producer, BLACK BOOK (2007)
Jos van der Linden - Producer, BLACK BOOK (2007)
Box Office
12/01/2006
"The expensive and expansive BLACK BOOK looks gorgeous, and there's no denying Verhoeven's genuine filmmaking talent..."
Total Film
02/01/2007
4 stars out of 5 -- "BLACK BOOK is brisk, frisky and glossed with a fine Hollywood sheen..."
Uncut
02/01/2007
4 stars out of 5 -- "For all its feisty sense of fun, BLACK BOOK is too dark and smart to let its characters fade out into a soft-focus happy-ever-after."
Sight and Sound
02/01/2007
"[I]t is a fast-paced, action-packed ride through resistance and betrayal, with spectacular exploits, steamy sex scenes and more plot twists than can be counted."
Rolling Stone
03/22/2007
3.5 stars out of 5 -- "[T]his tremendously exciting film can suddenly, unpredictably move you to tears."
Premiere
04/01/2007
4 stars out of 4 -- "BLACK BOOK is Verhoeven's best film since ROBOCOP: audacious, smart, shamelessly entertaining."
Movieline's Hollywood Life
03/01/2007
"BLACK BOOK remains riveting from start to finish, confirming that nail-biting suspense transcends national boundaries. This is a thriller that truly thrills."
Ultimate DVD
06/01/2007
3 stars out of 5 -- "Van Houten is superb as the chameleonic Stein, constantly adapting to her environment to survive and yet always maintaining an unbreakable, virtuous spirit..."

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