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THE LIFT

Netherlands, 1983 (MIFF 1984)

Director: Dick Maas

When a party of drunks becomes trapped in a lift in a high rise office building and almost suffocates before being rescued, a maintenance man, Felix Adelaar,is called in to check the installation. He finds nothing wrong, when the lift apparently, lures a blind man to fall to his death in the lift shaft, and when it decapitates a security guard, the press gets interested.

Felix is sought out by a woman journalist, Mieke De Beer, who grows suspicious of the lift's electronic controls which were supplied by a Japanese firm. When a cleaner, who has a criminal record, is killed in the lift, the police assume that the saboteur got his just reward and close the file.

Felix and Mieke, though, continue to probe the mystery. They discover that the Japanese electronics firm developed an organic microchip device that is not only capable of growing, but is programmed to evolve us own personality. When a colleague of Felix, also trying to solve the mystery, becomes insane after his experiences in the malevolent lift shaft, Felix is ordered to go on holidays. However, determined to find an explanation for the deaths, he breaks into the building and faces the organic computer.

Director Dick Maas' deft direction is enhanced by the fine performances of the protagonists. Melbourne audiences will remember Willeke Van Ammelrooy (Mieke) who visited the Festival some years ago.

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