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De Heineken Ontvoering * Maarten Treurniet (2011)

In 1983, after two years of preparation, four people kidnapped Freddy Heineken, then the director of the famous Heineken brewery. It remains an event that stirs the Dutch minds and media to this very day. One of the kidnappers was recently released for wholly other crimes, mostly his involvement of killings within the Dutch, criminal milieu. Because of all this, the man has actually become famous. Around the famous kidnap many theories have been developped, books have been written about it and almost 30 years later, the story still lives enough to dedicate a film to it. International attention is again raised and the international status of this film can come with our most famous actor, Rutger Hauer, who plays the victim. Unfortunately I must say that the film is ‘of a Dutch level’, it is not that good. The acting is not always convincing, not even that of Hauer. The good news is that the camera-work and montage are good and so is the atmosphere. We see nothing of the two years preparation. The kidnap of Heineken looks almost casual (originally the aim was for someone else), but the method itself is well thought out with changing cars and a hidden location. Heineken is held hostage for three weeks before he is found. The kidnappers were in time to divide a part of the money (the rest was hidden). Two of them left for France, two remained in the Netherlands and were soon arrested. Apparently the two who were arrested in France could not be simply send back and Heineken comes up with a plan. It is not entirely clear to me where the film is factual and where fictional. Because of the fuss around the most famous kidnapper, the story has been changed a bit. Holleeder is not in the film, so I can only guess what else has been changed. Overall the film is a nice documentary about the most famous crime in Dutch history, but as a film not entirely convincing.

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