Spider Man Almost Struck Down in Amsterdam, Bruckheimer gets Broccoli, and Old Soldier van de Velde takes to Murder. Horror Goes on the Road. In Omni-Gloria-Versum.

(July 2002)

  • During the annual Cinema-Expo at the RAI in Amsterdam, it seems that two attempts were made (on June 23rd and June 25th respectively) to steal the full-color PVC-banner for "SPIDER-MAN." This 6-by-9 foot collectors-item had other villains than the Green Goblin attempting to cut the superhero down. The sign had been sturdily attached by cables to steel bars near the entrance gate. Nevertheless, nocturnal thieves climbed up to the corner where it was hanging and tried to abscond with the blue-and-red webhead. On both occasions, local police managed to foil the culprits. Where, you may ask, was our glorious web-spinner when all this was going on? Doubtless he had been enjoying too much of the Dutch hospitality and was off somewhere showing MJ the sights.

  • Jerry Bruckheimer also traipsed through Holland during the Expo to pick up the Albert R. Broccoli Award of Excellence and attend the Dutch opening of his latest film "Bad Company" at the Tuschinski Theatre. One of the most successful film producers of all time, Bruckheimer has taken in \$12.5 billion (and that'll buy a lotta popcorn) with such films as "Flashdance", "Beverly Hills Cop", "Top Gun", "Crimson Tide, "The Rock", "Con Air", "Armageddon", "Enemy of the State", "Coyote Ugly", "Pearl Harbor" and "Black Hawk Down". "Bad Company" stars Academy Award winner Anthony Hopkins opposite Chris Rock; guess the title says it all.

  • C'est la vie, c'est la guerre. Looks like "Soldier of Orange 2" has bitten the dust for the time being, if not forever. After a meeting last month the Limited Partnership has been dissolved (this following a number of problems between Soldier of Orange 2 Ltd. and Nedfilm/Rob Houwer which had already resulted in the dissolution of their mutual contract). A meeting will soon be held and an attempt made to keep the financial costs of investors at a minimum. The courts have made a ruling that seems pretty definitely to have placed the soldier in his final resting place.

  • It seems that director Jean van de Velde ("All Stars," "Lek," and "De Kleine Blonde Dood") will soon be embarking on his first direction of an English language film. "The Murder of Madame Lefay", a thriller that takes place in the 19th century has been written by Brooks Hanssen and will be produced by Andras Hamori. The \$10 million budget is financed by the Canadian-American company Alliance Atlantis.

  • TGH has seen the first screening of George Sluizer's latest production "The Stone Raft." Definitely a treat in store for epic loving, magic-realist cinephiles, we've already told you about this upcoming event in February and June's BUZZ earlier this year. You'll have to wait patiently until the review appears on TGH site (which will be before the September opening), but, in the meantime, you can take a look at the film's own website located at www.stoneraft.nl.

  • This is the tenth year for the "All Night Horror Show", a great initiative for horror fans who can't always find their gory fare in the cinemas of Holland (and, let's face it, even vampires get thirsty now and again). The show starts rolling on July 6th, 2002, and continues through June 28th of 2003. Annually, this event has managed to pick up around 250,000 full-blooded stragglers from the country roads while travelling around the Dutch countryside. And there's still plenty of blood left where that came from! Each week the welcome wagon will appear in another city, just dying for your new deposits, so go on down. In return for your participation, the following treats will be offered: "Blade 2", "Mimic 2", "13 Ghosts", "Jeepers Creepers", "Dog Soldiers", "Queen of the Damned", "American Psycho 2", and one feature yet to be announced. Interested? OK, get ready, gang, here comes the list of cities that have already signed their contracts in blood >>> Rotterdam: July 27th, Eindhoven: August 31st, Utrecht: October 19th, Groningen: October 26th, The Hague: December 7th, and Amsterdam: January 18th. (NB- Make sure you check out "Jeepers Creepers".) Get on down the road and see where it heads at www.goforit.nl.

  • From July 4th through September 4th, anyone visiting the Netherlands Filmmuseum can look forward to spending the summer with Michel Piccoli. This amazing French actor has appeared in an incredible 170 films during the past half century. Some of the many wonderful moments from the past to be seen (again) include Francis Girot's "Le Trio Infernal" (see the TGH Emeralds) and the re-release of Marco Ferreri's delicious "La Grande Bouffe" (also see TGH Emeralds). His latest film role in Manoel de Oliveira's "Rentre a la Maison" is also among those scheduled among a variety of films that show the Frenchman's talents both as actor and director.

    Having had very successful seasons the past few summers by centering thematically on specific actors and screening films featuring the Marvelous Marcello, the Divine Deneuve and Sizzling Sophia, the Filmmuseum hopes to offer the same exciting opportunity this year with the Magnificent Michel. Running from July 4th till September 4th in at the Filmmuseum in Amsterdam, a selection of the program will also be screened in The Hague (Haags Filmhuis), Rotterdam (Lantaren Venster), Utrecht ('t Hoogt), Nijmegen (LUX), Groningen (Images). Further information concerning dates and times of the films to be shown is available at www.filmmuseum.nl. There will also be a selection screened at the Maison Descartes in Amsterdam within the framework of their Avant-Premieres Festival.

  • Twenty two (count 'em) Imax productions will be screened in the Omniversum in The Hague, Holland (Kennedylaan 5, Den Haag) starting on the 22nd of July (mark it) and running till the 1st of September. Although this is not the usual IMAX screen*, it is big enough and encompassing enough to give even the biggest eyes some thrills.

    Besides the familiar themes of nature, culture, and technique, the Omniversum Filmfestival 2002 will also be showing entertainment films. Three Dutch premieres will be introduced during the festival: "Space Station" (filmed in the international space station while circling the earth), "All Access" (onstage and backstage with such performers as Sting, B.B. King, Macy Gray, Kid Rock, Mary J. Blige, Carlos Santana, and Sheryl Crowe) and "Ski to the Max" (film on ice directed by James Bond stunt-coordinator Willy Bogner).

    Other films at the festival include: "3D Mania", "Africa's Elegant Kingdom", "Africa the Serengeti", "Alaska, Amazon, Antarctica", "China: Searching for the Panda", "Dolphins", "The Dream Is Alive", "Everest", "Expedition to the South Pole", "Extreme"*, "Fires of Kuwait", "The Greatest Places", "The Human Body", "The Living Sea", "Mysteries of Egypt", "Ring of Fire" and "Whales". (NB-Most of the productions are only available with Dutch commentary during the festival, so please check the website for full details) Further information available at www.omniversum.nl and www.imax.com/films.

    Oh, yeah. And for an even bigger kick, Pink Project will be performing the music of Pink Floyd live daily to accompany seven evening performances from July 29th till August 4th at 8:30 P.M.

    (*The regular IMAX theatre in Rotterdam was closed two years ago for some incomprehensible reason. Please God bring it back to us. Omnum. Amen.)

  • In October, the ten European stations broadcasting CANAL+ will be screening a series of mini-films centering upon the theme of "Immigration, Integration, Your Own Interpretation" within the broader cycle titled "The Lights of Brindisi". Participation in this competition of short films is restricted to film students and amateurs. The best of those entered will be broadcast.

    The aim of this project is to gather as many personal experiences as possible about immigration and integration in an attempt to show how foreigners experience immigration within their own surroundings. The competition is divided into four sub-divisions:

    1. My friend doesn't come from here.
    2. I'm from here, but also from somewhere else.
    3. I'm not from here, but I feel at home here.
    4. Why here and not somewhere else?
    Various approaches to the topic are acceptable, including short fiction films, animations, reports, and videoportraits and there is freedom of choice regarding the chosen format (VHS, miniDV, Hi8, etc). Submissions cannot be longer than 6 minutes and all Dutch entries must be received before July 31st by CANAL+ Nederland, Europese minifilmcompetitie, Antwoordnummer 1111, 1200 VB Hilversum. (Other European countries will have to inform at CANAL+ which address to use for submissions.)

    The jury will award prizes to the best European submission as well as best submissions for each separate category. First prize will be a Sony Digital 8 Handycam and Pinnacle Studio DV software which is suitable to edit films at home.

    CANAL+ will broadcast, as mentioned above, the winning films in October throughout Europe during the theme month of "The Lights of Brindisi", which programming also includes feature films, documentaries, sports programs, and portraits of musicians.

  • Despite reports that the Bellevue / Calypso Cinemas were to be closed at the end of May, it appears that these theatres will remain open for the time being. This also means that the newest division of the Filmmuseum (located at the same address) will remain open and showing an array of classic films only a few steps away from the Leidseplein. In celebration of the news, the following features will be screened between July 4th and 10th: "Ghandi", "Kramer vs. Kramer", "Turks Fruit", "Annie", "American Beauty", "The Blair Witch Project", "Notting Hill", "The English Patient", "Hannibal", "The Truman Show", "The Fifth Element", "The Sixth Sense" and "Mission: Impossible".

  • Tuesday, June 18th, saw the official opening of a new cinema at the Emma Children's Hospital in the Amsterdam Medical Centre (AMC). Pathé offered to build this cinema for their neighbors and, assisted by the donations of other instances, has managed to bring their promise to completion. "Spirit" (of Cimarron) is the first feature being screened. Here's wishing all you kids a speedy recovery and, in the meantime, an enjoyable bunch of popcorn. (That's a new item for a hospital menu!)

  • American Firefighters seem to be having an incredibly busy time this past year. The recent Colorado holocaust brought out flocks of citizens in support of their local heroes. The Abbey Cinema in Durango, not to be outdone, had a fundraiser to offset some of the costs for their volunteer fire departments. 100% of all ticket proceeds from "Spirit of the Southwest" taken in during one weekend were donated to local volunteer fire districts. The advertising for weekend event read, "If you ever had a desire to see this multimedia show about our community and the wilderness that surrounds it, this weekend is a good time since it all goes to help a great cause." Showing their unity of brotherhood, the cinema also welcomed all firefighters (if they managed to catch up on their sleep and wanted a place to cool down during their mandated rotational breaks) to come along and see anything showing at the Abbey Theatre for FREE.

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