The Sea of Silence (Stijn Coninx) Rating: NNN
So here we are, only 60 years after the end of second world war and who'da thunk that old Europe would be bound in blessed union as the world's largest economy?
To celebrate, the Goethe Institut presents a smorgasbord (or, if you prefer, buffet) of films from 15 of its 25 member states as part of the Eh! U: Meet The Europeans program (May 8 - 19, Goethe Institut.
The slate kicks off with the Netherlands. The Sea Of Silence (Sunday, May 8, 6 pm) is a peculiar mix of sentiment, grit and disenchanted Catholicism. It's told from the point of view of nine-year-old Caro, whose father, a pig farmer and manqué priest, indulges in drunken binges that threaten to destroy their family.
Caro prays to her toy Jesus to fix everything; salvation eventually comes in a disturbing and unexpected form. In spite of a very good performance by Johanna ter Steege as the mother on the verge of a nervous breakdown, the film as a whole is quirky to the point of preciousness, like a stickier version of Lasse Hallstrom's My Life as a Dog.