De Helaasheid Der Dingen * Felix van Groeningen (2009)

The title actually means “the unfortunateness of things”, but the international title of this Flemish film appears to be “The Misfortunates”. We hear the story of Gunther Strobbe as he looks back at his youth, in particular the period in which he with his alcoholic father and his alcoholic brothers lived with Gunther’s grandmother. The lowlife Strobbe family are a manace in their community, save for the owners of pubs. With getting drunk and having fun as virtually the only goal in life, we watch the Strobbes perform their weird contests and drink-given fights. “De Helaasheid Der Dingen” is a very entertaining film that deserves the attention it gets in my country. I do not know how the attention is internationally, but should you be able to watch it, make sure you do.

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