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Netherlands, 2000 (MIFF 2001, Documentaries)

Director: Martijn van Haalen, Paul Cohen

Could you build a career out of your parents' painful and protracted divorce? Gees Krijner can. The young Dutch artist won the prestigious Prix de Rome art prize for a performance piece about the breakup of his family, starring his own mother. The height of conceptual art, or a bizarre form of revenge? Dutch Heroes provides the answers. Krijners Father is the last in a distinguished line of accomplished and respected sea captains. His Grandfather saved 500 people from drowning in a Brazilian ocean catastrophe on the scale of the Titanic. No one can understand why their offspring could stoop so low-their resentment is profound. From the point of view of Krijner and his mother however the divorce, prolonged for 15 years by legal battles, is simpty 'judicial stalking' by a nasty and vindictive ogre. Either way this is one extremely unusual documentary that questions greed, art world ambitions, and the compulsion to air our dirty laundry in public. More compelling than a dozen Big Brothers with possibly no Survivors.

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