SPETTERS is an early work of director Paul Verhoeven who would later become best known for films like ROBOCOP, TOTAL RECALL,
BASIC INSTINCT, and STARSHIP TROOPERS. SPETTERS makes its blu-ray debut in North America with the unrated director's cut
(from a brand new 4K restoration) of this coming of age drama about three young guys who want to make it out of their industrial
town outside of Rottterdam. They have a shared passion for dirt bike racing with a champion being their idol (played by Rutger
Hauer in a supporting part). The three men, Rien, Eef, and Hans start competing for the sexy blonde (Renee Soutendijak)
who wants out of her job working with her brother on a roving food trailer business. Unforeseen events start shaping each
of these young men as they want to be a champion like their idol and get out of the shadow of their parents.
SPETTERS isn't a classic Paul Verhoeven movie by any means. It is trapped by its time as disco is at its height of popularity
and the music score dates the movie even more. It doesn't rise to the heights of such coming-of-age classics like the outsiders,
but it remains as a minor development in the rising career of Paul Verhoeven who would hit mainstream success years later
with ROBOCOP. I liked most of the characters, but the gang rape of one of the main characters by a guy gang puts me off
as how the movie's story decides to brush it off as the guy is learning he is gay and it wasn't really rape if he enjoyed
it. I just think rape is rape and the way SPETTERS deals with it takes me out of the movie during the third act as other
little things fail to wrap up after the film's climax. This film is great during the first two acts only to have the story
fall apart by one way or another.
The audio commentary by Paul Verhoeven is in English and you can skip it if you want as it isn't a very interesting track.
Also included on the blu-ray are the theatrical trailers for SPETTERS and FLESH & BLOOD and an animated image gallery
FINAL ANALYSIS: This coming-of age drama has a great two acts before becoming a mess, but SPETTERS is worth one watch
from fans of director Paul Verhoeven who discovered him through his later films.
This review is (c)12-7-2018 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
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