The Human Dutch | Chicago Reader

The Human Dutch

Dutch documentarian Bert Haanstra celebrates his countrymen's virtues and tweaks some of their foibles in this intermittently amusing and poignant 1963 feature. In voice-over narration Haanstra characterizes the Netherlands as a land with few great artists or scholars but an abundance of decent, hardworking folk. They're also a trifle prudish: in one hilarious sequence beachgoers awkwardly attempt to change into their swimwear in public, as one woman periodically adjusts her friend's collar to keep too much skin from showing. Two majestic montages study the Dutch people's most noteworthy pastimes, boating and ice skating, shot mostly with a telephoto lens by cameraman Anton van Munster. 90 min.

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