Forgotten Friday Flick – “Borgman”

With the holidays happening, why not celebrate the season with a little #1 pick from 2014 that adds a little creep to your Christmas – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  While filmmakers resort to all sorts of tactics these days to unsettle movie fans like thick blood and gore to slow building tension with a shocking payoff, this week’s past picture perfection has the rare accomplishment of being unnerving from start to finish.  Underground oddballs, gamey gurus, mayhem mind trips and one menacing little man you should never invite in who goes by the name of…Borgman!

Three men are seen amassing various weapons of sorts.  All local townsmen, including one who’s a priest, the gents appear to be on a mission to destroy.  Seems they’re after an underground hiding vagrant, who himself heads out of danger and alerts others also in bunker hiding along the way.  He then comes across a house and knocks on the door oddly asking the stunned occupant to use the bath to clean up…and then the fun begins.

There is far too much sinister and subtle work within the disturbing framework of Borgman and even if there wasn’t I wouldn’t dare reveal any tidbits anyway.  The tone of dread and uncomfortable that weaves through Borgman like a weight on one’s chest is so incredibly palpable that it definitely defies description.  Don’t get me wrong, there’s certainly horror and malice in the sometimes comically sadistic story, but nothing is overt.  No splattered special effects, no shocking twists, just a careful calculated tale of pure psychological manipulation between an unsuspecting family and a gang of odd folks with a knack for wielding their wickedness.  As the guru-like mysterious leader of the group named Borgman, Jan Bijvoet hands in one of the most memorably unnerving yet perfectly affable performances I’ve ever witnessed.  His motives, actions and desires are unclear, but it’s painfully obvious that he’s not out to do good.  Everyone else, including his loyal cohorts, all seem to be under the spell and influence of the hairy force of nature – it’s true tour-de-force work if ever there was any.

I have to hand it to Director Alex van Warmerdam – not only did he craft a flick that keeps anxiety on the table for the entire meal, but this is one sick story that screams original is being served.  I don’t know where the idea came from or where Bijvoet drew inspiration for his unsettling character and frankly I don’t want to.  Delving into a dark word of unknown horror presented with an affable face, Borgman is a boogeyman we’ve never seen before.



I'm a passionate and opinionated film critic/movie journalist with over 20 years of experience in writing about film - now exclusively for WhySoBlu.com. Previous sites include nine years at Starpulse.com where I created Forgotten Friday Flick back in 2011, before that as Senior Entertainment Editor for The213.net and 213 Magazine, as well as a staff writer for JoBlo.com. My other love is doing cool events for the regular guy with my company Flicks For Fans alongside my friend, partner and Joblo.com writer James "Jimmy O" Oster. Check us out at www.Facebook.com/FlicksForFans.

  1. No Comments