Movie Depictions of Boys Clothes: National Films--The Netherlands


Figure 1.--

We know very little about the Dutch film industry at this time. Films in Dutch, unfortunately have a rather limited market. The population of the Netherlands and neighboring Belgian Flanders is a rather small base on which to base a film industry. We do know that the Dutch have a vibrant film industry. Because few Americans speak Dutch, it is not well known in the United States. Fortunately Europeans are more willing to see foreign language films than Americans. Not only does the Netherlands have a small population, but for many years the film industry was impaired by Government limitations. Dutch officials for the first half of the 20th century did not regard film making a legitimate art form. In fact many officials viewed movies as licentious if not destructive of public morals. The Governments major involvent was controlling and censoring the relatively small number of films that were made. Hollywood films as a result dominated Dutch movie theaters. German films were also popular. This continued until World War II. Duyring the World War II German occupation (1940-44/45), American and British films were banned. Only after the War did Government attitudes toward movie making change and the small subsidies were offered the fledgling Dutch movie industry. Still relatively few Dutch films have been made. Most that were made were low-quality rather racy films of lottle real interest. One Dutch reader writes, "There were lot of Dutch movies made in the 1970s, but they were all garbage made to titilate and had no real theatrical or historical value." Dutch moviemakers started in the 80's began to make serious movies. They have mostly been historical movies and several deal with the Dutch World War II experience. The Government in an effort to promote the national film industry in 1999 began offering much more substantial subsidies to local movie makers.

Early-20th Century

Dutch officials for the first half of the 20th century did not regard film making a legitimate art form. In fact many officials viewed movies as licentious if not destructive of public morals. The Governments major involvent was controlling and censoring the relatively small number of films that were made. Hollywood films as a result dominated Dutch movie theaters. German films were also popular. This continued until World War II. A Dutch reader tells us, "In Holland all foreign films are always in the original language with subtitles in Dutch. I like it that way. Not only is it helpful when studying languages but I noticed often how poor and ridiculous the translations are, besides I always find it annoying when in an interview several people are talking at the same time, the person interviewed in his own language and the translator in English. Also Dutch television shows everybody and everything speaking in their own language with at the bottom of the screen the Dutch translation."

World War II

During the World war II German occupation (1940-44/45), American and British films were banned. And at any rate there was no ways of getting American and British films. We are niot sure about French films. The French continued to make films during the Vichy era with only limited German interference. We believe the Germans limited destribytion outside France, but this needs to be confirmed. A Dutch reader writes, "I cannot recall outspoken Nazi propaganda films being shown in Dutch theaters during the German occupation. Most of the movies were comedies or Heimat films with the exception of "Jud S", a mean anti-semitic film that was boycotted by the Dutch public. Since Holland did not have a film industry and British and American products were no longer allowed or available, the only movies shown were German films. The theaters usually were full, because there was little other entertainment. Of course there also were Dutch citizens who simply did not go to theaters where German movies were shown. On the other hand popular German music was popular also in the Netherlands. One thing the Germans always excelled in was making music and that we heard in the radio all the time. During the war the cinemas always showed the 'Wochenschau', the German news- reels, from Berlin with lots of action from the front (the Germans always winning of course) and Nazi propaganda. Everything was in German with Dutch subtitles. You asked about French movies. I pnly remember one film with Danielle Darrieux in French. But that's all." We believe that the theater owners coukld chose what to show from the German films available. We believe that German occupation authorities required that some films be shown, such as 'Jud S'. We are not sure if there were other films which had to be shown.

Post-War Era

Only after the War did Government attitudes toward movie making change and the small subsidies were offered the fledgling Dutch movie industry. Still relatively few Dutch films have been made. Most that were made were low-quality rather racy films of lottle real interest. One Dutch reader writes, "There were lot of Dutch movies made in the 1970s, but they were all garbage made to titilate and had no real theatrical or historical value." Dutch moviemakers started in the 80's began to make serious movies. They have mostly been historical movies and several deal with the Dutch World War II experience. The Government in an effort to promote the national film industry in 1999 began offering much more substantial subsidies to local movie makers.

Sources

Stueck, Rudi. E-mail message, February 26, 2011.







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Created: 4:30 AM 2/26/2011
Last updated: 6:33 AM 2/26/2011