Sabine Lubbe Bakker and Niels van Koevorden’s profile of a pair of alcoholic friends debuted at IDFA in 2013. It went on to screen at Tribeca, Sydney, Traverse City, London, Chicago, Talinn Black Nights, Cleveland, and One World, among other events.
Living in a remote Belgian village, Marcel and Bob are old friends, and they’re both prone to excessive drinking and long, often very funny, conversations. As the film opens, the middle-aged Marcel’s marriage has just ended, and he turns to the older Bob for companionship and, it’s clear, an escape from his deep depression. Even as the pair provide unexpected onscreen comedy, their talk turns to joking about suicide methods, and Marcel recognizes his problems with drinking. The filmmakers maintain just the right balance between humor and pathos, finding genuine comedy in the men’s rapport without either condescension or pity as they craft an indelible portrait.