Watch The Last Days of Emma Blank
- 1 hr 29 min
The Last Days of Emma Blank is a darkly comedic film from the Netherlands, directed by Alex van Warmerdam. Released in 2009, the movie stars Marlies Heuer as the titular Emma Blank, a wealthy matriarch who is confined to her estate due to illness. Gene Bervoets plays her son, Theo, a scheming man who is desperate for his mother's attention and money. Annet Malherbe portrays the family's long-suffering maid, Gonnie. The film takes place over the course of a few days as Emma prepares for her impending death. However, instead of focusing on her final moments, the story revolves around the dysfunctional relationships within her family. Theo is constantly scheming to get his hands on his mother's money, while his sisters Elly (Eva van de Wijdeven) and Christien (Marieke Heebink) are more concerned with their own personal dramas. Meanwhile, Gonnie is caught in the middle of all the chaos, trying to keep things running smoothly despite the family's constant bickering and infighting. At first, the film appears to be a straightforward dark comedy about a dysfunctional family. However, as the story progresses, it becomes clear that there is something more sinister at play. Emma Blank may be sick, but she is far from helpless. In fact, she seems to revel in the power she holds over her family, manipulating them at every turn. As the family members squabble and plot against each other, Emma quietly pulls the strings behind the scenes. She demands that her daughters perform strange and humiliating tasks, such as singing for her amusement or plucking out their own nose hairs. She encourages Theo's petty schemes and even assists him in his attempts to defraud her own estate. Throughout the film, there are hints that things are not as they seem. Emma's illness is never fully explained, and her behavior becomes increasingly erratic and unpredictable. Meanwhile, the family's interactions with each other become more and more surreal, with scenes that are both hilarious and unsettling. The Last Days of Emma Blank is a film that defies easy categorization. It is a bit of a black comedy, a bit of a family drama, and a bit of a psychological thriller. At its core, however, it is a movie about power and control. Emma Blank may be confined to her estate, but she is far from powerless. She uses her wealth, her illness, and her wits to manipulate those around her, turning her own impending demise into a macabre game of cat and mouse. The film is beautifully shot and features some fantastic performances from the cast. Marlies Heuer is especially impressive as Emma Blank, managing to make the character both pitiable and terrifying at the same time. Gene Bervoets is also great as the conniving Theo, while Annet Malherbe brings a quiet desperation to the role of Gonnie. Overall, The Last Days of Emma Blank is a fascinating and darkly funny film. It is not for everyone, as its odd blend of humor and horror may be off-putting to some viewers. However, for those who enjoy unconventional films that defy expectations, it is definitely worth checking out.