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Voor een verloren soldaat

VHS Tape
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shattered Realities Jan. 18 2004
'For A Lost Soldier' is one film which I have watched several times! It deals with a volatile topic, the story of a very young boy who finds love in the arms of a young Canadian soldier in World War II. Since the story is based on an autobiographical book, it is not the whimsy of a script writer but rather a glimpse into one man's childhood memories. The director took some liberties with the book, both in the introduction and again at the end, but otherwise stayed fairly true to the story. The movie challenges one's ideas regarding consensual sexual relationships which involve an adult and a minor. If anyone was seduced in the film, it was the soldier. The boy is in control and very aware of what it is that he wants from the soldier at all times. The event happened during the liberation of Holland and the liberation theme is tied closely to the young boy's own special liberation. The film also gives a vastly different view of life in Holland under German occupation. While 'The Hiding Place' portrays the horrors of Nazi power in a large city, this film shows what life was like in a remote village. The boy's ration card, so carefully guarded at home, is not even recognized by his 'adoptive' family. They appear to eat well and the village is only guarded by two German soldiers. The soldiers are so bored, they attend the local church service on Sundays, even though the minister is raining down hellfire and brimstone on the German forces in his sermons. One movie with two new concepts to explore, make the film a basic to any good collection.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Touchy Subject matter that is well handled.... Oct. 18 2002
"Voor Een Verloren Soldaat" (For a Lost Soldier) is about a refugee boy sent from Amsterdam by his mom for safekeeping to a farm family in northern Netherlands. This is the story of Jeroen who is a dancer. The area is liberated by Canadian troops, and a Canadian soldier and the boy develop a friendship.
It's an auto-biographical work by the Dutch director, Jeroen Krabbe. Film critics from major daily newspapers reviewed it, and the film had only a limited American release, perhaps because of the controversial nature of the film.
He recalls his first homoerotic friendship in a series of flash backs. The flashbacks take place in the Netherlands at almost the end of W.W.II. The Allies arrive and Jeroen and Walt meet and enter into a relationship between a man and a boy. The subject is handled with a openness and truth which could never be handled as subject matter in most countries
Part of this film is in Dutch, with English subtitles, however, a good part of this movie is in English with no subtitles.
Again, this is a touchy subject matter that is handled very well.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The ostensibly "tender" portrayal of a 12-year-old boy's (Jeroem) sexual relationship with a Canadian soldier (Walt) in World War II. Apart from barely developing the kid as a believable character, there's hardly any redeeming quality to Walt. The man is openly a predator, using candy and promises of adventure to seduce his way into Jeroem's pants. There's only one real "sex" scene between the two, and the director handles it with as much taste and class as one can handle a grown man deflowing a preteen. In a scene where Jeroem's adoptive father confronts Walt about what he knows is going on, the man wilts under the fact that he owes his freedom partly to the Canadian army's driving Nazis out of their land, and his resolve crumbles. All in all, it's a pretty bland and full of half-hearted narrative excuses. I will give the film one kudo, tho: they didn't fall back on the cliché of abusive father-figure driving the boy into the pedophile's "loving" arms.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice but overrated Oct. 21 2003
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
There's nothing wrong with this movie in terms of cinematics, acting, directing, and quality of writing. It is sincere, character-driven and real. A caveat: To appreciate it at all you have to put aside the conviction that a relationship between a man and a boy is always wrong.
Those things said, there is nothing particularly excellent about this movie. It is touching, nostalgic, and truthful, but it is none of these things to the point of truly affecting your heart. Part of the reason is that it's too short, another part is that the ambiance (editing/music/so forth) are not very well done, and another part may be simply that I had read so many extremely complimentary reviews that my expectations were just too high.
It's a nice movie... but don't expect a masterpiece.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I'm Conflicted Nov. 17 2003
Oh, my. What to say about this movie? It is, after all, about a young man having sex with a 12-year-old boy.
First, the easy part . . . . The movie is well-crafted, structured around flashback, a deft mix of subtitled Dutch and English in reflection of the idiosyncratic communication that evolves between the main characters, and beautifully filmed in the soft light of northern Europe. As a piece of cinematic craftmanship, I'd give it 4 stars.
But then there's the story itself. Can sexual relations between an adult and a child ever be excused by love or circumstances? Before this movie, the answer for me was a resounding no. After this movie, I simply don't know. The man here is not a sexual predator in that he is not attracted to the boy by virtue of his youth. Instead, he is a gay man doubly isolated by his sexual orientation and by being on foreign ground at the end of a world-shattering war. And, coming across a gay boy likewise isolated from his home at the end of the same war, a bond is forged that did not have sex as its initial aim and came to include sex only after love was so deeply established as to have rendered age irrelevant.
Or did it? After all, the soldier is first attracted to the boy by his looks, not by anything he knew about the boy or his circumstances. And can age ever be irrelevant to sex involving minors? Do 12-year-olds ever know enough of themselves, their world, and its risks to be informed participants?
If nothing else, this movie accomplishes something by making the question tenable. But does it, in the end, make this love affair all right? I simply don't know.
This movie stands up as a thought-provoking film. It should not, however, be read as an unambiguous justification for adult/child sex.
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