Filmfetish Friday: The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Hemel, Haywire

Filmfetish Friday: The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Hemel, Haywire

Mar 30, 2012 |  by  |  Art, Event
About the author
As a freelance journalist, Anouk (26) usually writes about what other people do or like. In her precious spare time she watches arthouse films. Not a few. A lot, thanks to her trusted Cineville pass. Here she can finally share her film-fetish with the world.

To watch or not to watch? I will tour around Amsterdam’s cinemas and answer this crucial question every Friday. Without mercy, of course. Sucky movies will be slaughtered, cinematographic pearls will be appreciated as such. Or the other way around. After all, good taste is in the eye of the beholder.

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

It’s a bit of a lousy week in art house cinema land. Last week I had more choice, so I could ignore The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, now I can’t. Maybe I’m making it sound like The Best Exotic is a terrible film, but that is not what I think. I just think you shouldn’t bring your date to this one, bring your mother instead. This film is kind, warm and full of British post-colonial humour. And don’t forget that the actors are pretty good too: Bill Nighy (sleazy singer from Love Actually), Judi Dench, Maggi Smith (Professor Gonagall, for the HP fans) and Tom Wilkinson. They all get to play elderly people who want to go on a holiday in India, and of course, the hotel is not so great and exotic as the name promised. They don’t let that fact not stand in the way of a small adventure of course. So, why not go to have a nice evening with your mother? If she’s only a bit like mine, she likes everything that’s British. Or Scandinavian.

Watch this film in Cineville’s The Movies. Also in Pathe (Tuschinski, De Munt and City).


Debuting director Sacha Polak (1982) can be very proud of herself already. Her film Hemel won a prize given by the international film press in Berlin. The story is about the young girl Hemel (Hannah Hoekstra), who is raised by her father (Hans Dagelet, love him). A father that has been acting more like a friend than a father and has had many, many girlfriends. To compensate, or maybe to find real love, Hemel has a lot of sexual partners. Hoekstra shows absolutely no shame, she is naked most of the time and even shaves her vagina for everyone to see. The film has been compared to Shame (Steve McQueen) a couple of times, wherein sex is also an instrument of self destruction. Thumbs up for Polak.

Watch this film in Cineville’s Het Ketelhuis and Rialto.


I can’t help thinking of the Spice Girls and their ‘Girl Power!’ mantra. In Haywire Gina Carano (could this name be any more Cosa Nostra?) plays a professional fighter, trained in mixed martial arts. She used her skills a lot in this film, and acting is not that important. Weird, because why else would you also cast Michael Douglas, Michael Fassbender, Ewan McGregor and Antonio Banderas? Probably to make people go to your film. Well fine, I like to see a female action hero again that is not Angelina Jolie. O right, the plot: espionage, betrayal, contra espionage, double betrayal, you name it. Steven Soderbergh (Traffic, the Ocean’s films) directed the film, so it should at least be entertaining.

Watch this film in Cineville’s Studio K. Also in Pathe (Arena and De Munt).

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