Meet the Fokkens (2012)
Average Rating: 7.3/10
Reviews Counted: 16
Fresh: 15 | Rotten: 1
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Average Rating: 7.1/10
Critic Reviews: 10
Fresh: 10 | Rotten: 0
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 2,307
Meet Louise and Martine Fokkens: 69-year-old identical twins who have worked as prostitutes in Amsterdam's red light district for over 50 years. Louise is newly retired due to arthritis ("I couldn't get one leg over the other"), but Martine carries on, unable to support herself on a state pension. Between explicit scenes of her daily grind, she and Louise stroll the city in matching outfits, recounting hilariously ribald stories from a lifetime of sex work. (Discussing a client who was a
Aug 8, 2012 Limited
Apr 2, 2013
Kino Lorber - Official Site
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Even if this film were not cordially made, which it is, it would have a considerable jump-start.
Despite the occasional stumble, the doc never falls, thanks to the sheer strength of its subjects' undaunted and indomitable character.
The doc gives a rare look at the business of plying the world's oldest profession over the past 50 years in the famously tolerant city, but the directors are a bit too hands-off and the narrative wanders.
Year by year, they've shared every part of their lives, and now the Fokkens sashay into the future, sharing memories and viewpoints as well as their neon-bright identical outfits.
The filmmakers follow the sisters around town, creating a delightful portrait of good-natured extroverts.
The sisters' struggle for autonomy (they opened Amsterdam's only independent brothel until they were forced out by organized crime) reveals a touching commitment to mutual survival.
Despite the pleasure of spending a little over an hour with these two warm, loving women, Meet the Fokkens often falters as a film.
Amusing and even liberating to watch, but lacks sufficient insight and revelations. How often do you get to see a doc about elderly prostitutes?
Schröder and Provaas frame their conversation well, making good use of the color, the reflective surfaces, and the surfeit of exposed younger flesh in the District.
The feminist documentary takes up the battered-wife syndrome, low pay for female workers, forced separation of mothers and children and-finally-a woman-owned business. Gloria Steinem must be happy, though the film centers on 69-year-old twin hookers.
Few recent studies of commercialized sex have been character profiles, so Rob Schröder and Gabrielle Provaas's doc is an unusual and welcome polemic.
To what degree the seductive senior siblings for sale are leveling with audiences is up for grabs, but certain truths vividly come into play. Namely, their refusal to act old, along with challenging the cultural norms of what it means to be beautiful.
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