IT'S ALL SO QUIET (Boven is het stil) that is full of small details -- of caring for the elderly as well as for farm animals -- that builds into a quietly moving study of loneliness and the inability of some of us to ever be able to reach out to anyone else.
Gerbrand Bakker) and directed by Nanouk Leopold (shown at left), the movie may be slow-moving but it is never uninteresting due to its expert detailing and how simple and subtle it consistently is. Ms Leopold keeps her camera ever watchful regarding the connection between father and son and between son and farm and the few other people who attempt to bridge what seems an incredible distance between them and this sad and unresponsive farmer.
Jeroen Willems (above, left), whose untimely death occurred soon after the film was completed, the son, Helmer, is a figure of enormous empathy by us viewers, even though the character himself barely seems able to empathize with others or understand himself and his own needs.
Henri Garcin, above, left) offers a look at the day-to-day drudgery -- cleaning up the shit, showering the old man, and the increasingly difficult chore of simply carrying him up the stairs -- that goes into the care of the very elderly.
Martijn Lakemeier, above, right), and it seems that a kind of break-through may come for Helmer. Things do happen and change does occur, but in the barest of increments. Possibilities lie unseen and unused, and the movie remains sad but ever-so-slightly hopeful.
Big World Pictures and running 91 minutes, in Dutch with English subtitles) -- begins a one-week run this Friday, January 9, at Anthology Film Archives in New York City. Click here for tickets and here for directions. Elsewhere? I'm not certain. But, being from Big World, there will most likely be a DVD on offer eventually and/or some digital streaming.