Never underestimate the power of American roots music to seep into the consciousness of people all over the world. The not entirely sweet and cheerful story of a musician, a tattoo artist, and their cancer-stricken daughter is accompanied by the authentic-sounding Appalachian bluegrass music their band plays – in the Flanders region of Belgium. Singer/tattooist Elise (actress Veerle Baetens) has a fine singing voice, and her true love Didier is played by banjo player Johan Heldenbergh, based on his Flemish-language hit stage play (co-written with Mieke Dobbels). Director Felix van Groeningen uses the plentiful tunes to comment on the action, and the performances are naturalistic and unforced. Worth a look for adventurous curiosity seekers (111 min.).
Director: Felix van Groeningen
Producer: Arnold Heslenfeld, Dirk Impens, Frans van Gestel and Laurette Schillings
Cast: Veerle Baetens, Johan Heldenbergh, Geert van Rampelberg, Nell Cattrysse, Nils De Caster and Robbie Cleiren