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Borgman

7/10
Drama . Thriller
 

Borgman is the central character in Alex van Warmerdam’s dark, malevolent fable. Is he a dream or a demon, a twisted allegory or an all-too-real embodiment of our fears? Borgman is a sinister arrival in the sealed-off streets of modern suburbia. His presence unleashes a crowing gallery of distortion around the careful façade constructed by an arrogant, comfortable couple, their three children and nanny.

 
Actors: Pieter-Bas de Waard , Eva van de Wijdeven , Annet Malherbe , Dirkje van der Pijl , Sara Hjort Ditlevsen , Tom Dewispelaere , Alex van Warmerdam , Jeroen Perceval , Hadewych Minis , Jan Bijvoet
Directors: Alex van Warmerdam
Country: NETHERLANDS , BELGIUM , DENMARK
Release: 2013-08-29
More Info:
  • Jessica Kiang

    With pitch-perfect performances across the board, and boasting crisp photography and editing, the film never ceases to twist, turn and surprise, taking wicked joy in constantly switching us back on ourselves and our expectations of the characters.

    The Playlist Full Review
  • Stephen Holden

    That Borgman restrains itself from turning into a full-scale horror movie makes it all the more unsettling, although it has its bumpy moments.

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Stephanie Zacharek

    Van Warmerdam keeps such a calm, firm hold on the material that he practically hypnotizes you into following along to the end. The craftsmanship is precise; the result is enigmatic.

    Village Voice Full Review
  • Josh Kupecki

    Coyness aside, Borgman is a supremely controlled and darkly nuanced fable that veers away from your expectations every time you think you have it figured out.

    Austin Chronicle Full Review
  • Tirdad Derakhshani

    A remarkable, thoroughly disturbing creepshow that burrows deep under your skin and refuses to let go.

    Philadelphia Inquirer Full Review
  • Eric Kohn

    With its palatial setting, Borgman shows how money can buy luxury, but it can't salvage the corruption that comes from within.

    indieWIRE Full Review
  • Jordan Hoffman

    Borgman‘s crafty, trickster-ish screenplay, always two steps ahead of you, keeps you rooting for clues, enough to put your ethics on temporary hold.

    Film.com Full Review
  • Brian Tallerico

    Borgman can sometimes frustrate but it is an accomplished piece of work, driven by a uniquely malevolent tonal balance and two fantastic central performances. It sometimes simmers when I wish it would boil over but damn if it isn’t fascinating to watch the water bubble.

    RogerEbert.com Full Review
  • Kyle Smith

    A sickening horror parable disguised as a comedy of mores, the Netherlands’ Borgman is a rarity: a genuinely shocking, upsetting movie.

    New York Post Full Review
  • Roger Moore

    Borgman is a chilling, cryptic film that commands your attention even as its writer-director devotes much of his attention to keeping you from figuring it out.

    McClatchy-Tribune News Service Full Review
  • Gary Goldstein

    For all its emotional roller-coastering and wild intrigue, the film's purpose — as well as its title character — feels more symbolic than specific. Still, this well-shot and -designed picture is a mostly compelling, intrepid ride.

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Andrew O'Hehir

    If you can tolerate watching it once, it will burrow into your brain and never get out again; your only recourse will be dragging your friends into the nightmare and seeing it again.

    Salon.com Full Review
  • Bilge Ebiri

    Van Warmerdam has a way with images that are both playful and horrific, and you may find yourself chuckling at Borgman as much as you recoil at it. It’s destined for cult status.

    New York Magazine (Vulture) Full Review
  • David Rooney

    A quirky study of the unrelenting grip of evil, the film is beautifully made, though stronger in its intriguing setup than its muddy resolution.

    The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
  • Guy Lodge

    A sly, insidious and intermittently hilarious domestic thriller.

    Variety Full Review
  • Mike D'Angelo

    Van Warmerdam keeps things engrossingly ominous throughout, and Bijvoet has a lot of fun with his passive-aggressive creepazoid, but Borgman is both too self-consciously odd and too bluntly punitive to draw real blood.

    The A.V. Club Full Review
  • Scott Tobias

    There isn’t a bad scene in Borgman... But van Warmerdam just keeps on teasing and teasing, until the creeping suspicion sets in that teasing is all the film is going to do.

    The Dissolve Full Review
  • Dave Calhoun

    Beyond the shocks and games, there's not a great deal to take away in the form of meaty ideas or lingering themes, and its catchy premise doesn't really deliver in the end.

    Time Out London Full Review
  • Catherine Shoard

    There's the frustrating sense of ideas bubbling too low beneath the surface, of mordant jokes serving as an end rather than a means.

    The Guardian Full Review
  • Clayton Dillard

    An art-house con destined to make viewers who've ever used the term "mindfuck" as praise rack their brains trying to come up with alternate readings for a film that invites many but convincingly offers none.

    Slant Magazine Full Review
  • Mark Feeney

    Is Borgman a fable? A fairy tale? A parable? An allegory? A burlesque of Western bourgeois life in the 21st century? One thing Dutch writer-director Alex van Warmerdam’s film isn’t is a black comedy, even if that’s what it’s meant to be. The movie’s black, all right, but a comedy has to be funny.

    Boston Globe Full Review
  • Mick LaSalle

    The Dutch thriller Borgman gets credit for being original, but not for being original in a compelling way.

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review