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Het Debuut

Het Debuut
Marina de Graaf

Marina de Graaf

Screen Time: 75%
Role: Carolien
Age: 17 years old

 

Het Debuut

1977
The Debut
Rating: 6.25 (4 votes)
Directed: Nouchka van Brakel
Country: The Netherlands
Language: Dutch
Genre: Coming of Age, Romance
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0075924

Summary

The delicate story of the impossible love between an older married man and a fourteen-year old schoolgirl.

Movie Reviews

How old was the female lead (Marina de Graaf) in the picture?

Shooting ended november 1976 - Marina was 16 years old at the time, turned 17 december that year, 18 in december 1977 - the year this movie had its theatrical release. It was quite standard for a sixteen year old to be cast for an underage role if the film involved themes like coming of age and/or sexuality, in the 70s.

Daring theme spoiled by bad directing and acting

Daring theme. I like that. A sexual relationship between an adult and an underage girl. And without showing the child as merely a victim of an adult predator. The sex is wanted and enjoyed by both partners. At the same time, the movie does also not fall in the other extreme of showing the girl as basically a seductress. At the end, she can be seen as the victim of the relationship, but not because she was too young or too experienced to understand about sex. She is a victim because she was dreaming of more, of a lasting relationship. While he neither can nor wants to leave his wife. She is a victim like so many mistresses of married men are victims.

Daring theme, yes. But when one looks further, little more positive can be said. The movie does not succeed in making the characters live. For a part this has to do with the plot, that keeps looking at the relationship from the outside, we do not really get to the inside of the characters, which is especially pitiful in the last third of the movie. But most is lost simply through bad acting and directing. Most obvious is this in the girl who plays Carolien's girlfriend. She seems to just be saying her lines, without any realization that these lines have some kind of emotional meaning. And that she should use a tone of voice that fits that meaning. And Marina de Graaf (Carolien) and several other supporting actors make a similar type of mistake. All in all, the movie is too much TELLING its story instead of SHOWING it.

The idea is good, and has the possibility of giving a movie that leads to moral discussions amongst its viewers. But then one would need to give the viewer some interest in its characters first. And that's where this movie fails miserably.