NETHERLANDS, BELGIUM

SCHNEIDER VS. BAX

2015 – colore – 95’

 

Direction: Alex van Warmerdam

Screenplay: Alex van Warmerdam

Cinematography: Tom Erisman 

Editing: Job ter Burg

Set design: Geert Paredis

Sound: Peter Warnier

Costumes: Stine Gudmundsen-Holmgreen

Cast: Tom Dewispelaere, Alex van Warmerdam, Maria Kraakman, Annet Malherbe, Gene Bervoets, Eva van de Wijdeven, Pierre Bokma, Henri Garcin, Loes Haverkort

Producer: Marc van Warmerdam

Production: Graniet Film in coproduzione con in co-production with Czar Tv, Vara

 

SYNOPSIS

On the morning of his birthday, Schneider, a hit man, gets a call from Mertens who has a job for him. Schneider refuses, as it is his birthday and he promised Lucy, his wife, to help her with the preparations for the dinner party. But Mertens insists it is an important job: the target is Ramon Bax, a writer who lives alone in a secluded place and, on Mertens’ insistence, he accepts the assignment. Bax, for his part, is recovering from a night of drugs and alcohol when he remembers that his daughter, Francisca, is coming to visit him. He urgently and heartlessly gets rid of his young mistress, Nadine, to welcome her. But when Francisca arrives, depressed and unhappy, her father does not know how to deal with her and urges her to take some drugs…

 

DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT

“I almost always begin a project by writing up a synopsis and guidelines that I try to follow. This time I just wrote down a few ideas and started to build the script, so the story was something abstract that developed as I was writing it. I focused more on achieving a certain style and following a specific narrative rhythm. (…) The social criticism emerges as a side effect, rather than as a purpose in itself. I let it appear in the story, although you have to pay close attention. In this film, I created the contrast between the perfect housewife preparing a family birthday party while the husband is wrestling with someone to give it a comedic twist. (…)”

AWARDS AND FESTIVALS

2015 Locarno IFF –  Competition

2015 Festival du Cinema de Paris:  New Genre Award