Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.
Original title: Antonia
The Netherlands/Belgium/United Kingdom, 1995. Bergen, Prime Time, Bard Entertainments, Nederlands Fonds voor de Film, Stimuleringsfonds Nederlandse Culturele Omroepproducties, Co-Productiefonds Binnenlandse Omroep, Meteor Film Productions, Nederlandse Programma Stichting, Fonds Film in Vlaanderen, Eurimages, Investco NV, European Co-production Fund. Screenplay by Marleen Gorris. Cinematography by Willy Stassen. Produced by Gerard Cornelisse, Hans de Weers,Hans de Wolf. Music by Ilona Sekacz. Production Design by Harry Ammerlaan. Costume Design by Jany Temime. Film Editing by Wim Louwrier, Michiel Reichwein. Academy Awards 1995. Toronto International Film Festival 1995.
Rich chronicle of a family of women in post-World War II Holland. Antonia (Willeke van Ammelrooy) is a free-spirited matriarch who returns to the village of her youth with her teenage daughter (Els Dottermans) when the war is over and she has been widowed. The many relationships that they form, friends and lovers alike, make up the adventures of the heart that this film explores, and every bit of it ripe with enjoyment. These women are fierce and independent, unapologetic about their passions and exceptional members of their community, so charismatic that the film’s lack of a central challenge (given that the characters prove their mettle but end up as good as they began) matters very little.