One day, out of the blue, two young professional adults, Iris (Julia Akkermans) and her older brother Ivan (Eelco Smits) are told by their prickly 74-year-old father (an excellent Johan Leysen) that he’s had enough of life and intends to die by his next birthday. Where Ivan stoically accepts this declaration, Iris fights it all the way, quitting her job and moving in with her father, determined to dissuade him by any means possible. Ultimately, however, she accepts his last and deepest wish.
This is a remarkably unsentimental yet poignant, and yes at times sharply funny, directorial debut for Floor van der Meulen. Working from a script by Bastiaan Kroeger, she handles her three key characters with grace and levity, paired with floating camera-work and a compellingly nostalgic soundtrack including The Sonics, Jim Croce and Rodriguez. —Simone Ling
Floor van der Meulen directed 9 Days From My Window in Aleppo (2015) which won the Best Short Film Award at the European Film Awards and BFI London Film Festival. She also directed the hit series Skam (2019) and the feature length documentary The Last Male Standing (2019).