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Spetters (1980)

Cast: Hans Van Tongeren, Hans Van Tongeren, Renée Soutendijk, more...
Director: Paul Verhoeven, Paul Verhoeven
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: MGM
Genre: Drama, Foreign, Netherlands
Running Time: 123 min.
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
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Spetters further elaborates on the themes of sexual obsession previously probed in director Paul Verhoeven's Turkish Delight (1973). Hans Van Tongeren, Toon Agterberg and Maarten Spanjer play, respectively, Reen, Eve and Hans, a closely-knit group of teenage motorcycle lovers who idolize local cycling champion Witkamp (played by Rutger Hauer, the star of Delight). Unfortunately, the adolescents' attempts to rebel take a dark and brutal turn when Van Tongeren is permanently injured in a road accident and Agterberg is gang raped by a group of homosexuals. While the other two young men lust after Fientje (Renee Soutendjik), a promiscuous hashhouse waitress, Agterberg responds to the rape by coming out and taking Fientje's gay brother as a lover. Verhoeven is artistically and sexually graphic in juxtaposing "cycle love" with the friends' carnal interrelations. The title of Spetters is an indigenous triple-entendre -- it refers to the Dutch vernacular for "grease spatterings" (both the oily renderings left behind by the motorcycles commandeered by the film's central characters and the grease slung by Soutendjik), is a slang term for male ejaculate, and was frequently used in the seventies and eighties to refer to people who are sexually appealing ("That girl is a spetter.")

~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Classic Verhoeven by gfrasur June 29, 2008 - 7:15 PM PDT
1 out of 1 members found this review helpful
It's always refreshing to watch a film that takes only a passing interest in its own plot. With Spetters, it's easy to feel that nothing is happening, but in place of dramatic machinations, the audience is rewarded with the pleasures of strong characters and a strongly developed sense of place and time. Much like Verhoeven's earlier Turkish Delight, Spetters really makes one curious about life in The Netherlands in the 70's.

In many respects, Verhoeven was Larry Clark before Larry Clark. We'd probably call his Dutch films teen exploitation if it weren't for the fact that they're so compelling. Or maybe we'd call them exploitation because they're so compelling. Decide for yourself. You won't be bored either way.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.22)
59 Votes
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Moto Movies!!
Motorcycles in the movies! Some of these films are all about bikes, some only have a scene or two, but are still cool.
so many films, so little time...

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