This news release describes past events and should be used for historical purposes only. Please note date of release.
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield Hall 218
Eau Claire, WI 54702-4004
'Character' to Screen
at UW-Eau Claire
phone (715) 836-4741
fax (715) 836-2900

MAILED: Jan. 29, 1999

EAU CLAIRE — "Character," a 1997 film from Holland that won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, will screen on the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire International Film Series Feb. 4-7.
Mike Van Diem's stunningly designed parable of destiny and parentage will be presented at 6 and 8:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday in Davies Theatre.
"Character" is a powerful, provocative mixture of Horatio Alger and Franz Kafka, combining an inspiring saga of self-betterment with a paranoid parable of the Law of the Father. Set in the port city of Rotterdam in the 1920s, the story begins with the murder of Dreverhaven, a notoriously ruthless slumlord. The murderer is apparently Jakob Katadreuffe, a promising young lawyer. As Jakob is grilled by the police, flashbacks uncover the strange and complex relationship between him and the victim. Jakob is Dreverhaven's illegitimate son, the result of a brief liaison with an iron-willed housekeeper who raises the boy on her own. The product of two strong natures, Jakob strives to overcome his lowly origins, educating himself and insinuating himself into a prestigious law firm — while his unacknowledged father pops up like a recurring Oedipal nightmare to thwart the young man's ambition at every turn.
"It is a full-blooded Dickensian delight such as we seldom get in movies anymore," wrote New York Observer film critic Andrew Sarris.
The 125-minute color film is in Dutch, subtitled in English, and will be presented by video projection.
Tickets are $2 for International Film Society members and UW-Eau Claire faculty/staff, or $1 for UW-Eau Claire students, at the University Service Center, (715) 836-3727.
Membership in the International Film Society entitles community members to purchase tickets to IFS presentations and films sponsored by the University Activities Commission throughout the year. Members also receive a newsletter with advance information about IFS films. An individual IFS membership costs $4; a family membership costs $10.
Spring semester presentations by the International Film Society include the following:
  • "Baraka" (United States 1993), a colorful visual montage that uses state-of-the-art computer camera techniques to tell the story of Earth's evolution, man's diversity and interconnectedness, and his impact on the world he inhabits; Feb. 25-28.
  • "Pretty Village, Pretty Flame" (Yugoslavia 1996), an anti-war drama set against the backdrop of the long-running Bosnian conflict; March 25-28.
  • "Healing by Killing" (Israel 1997), a documentary probe of the role of doctors and psychiatrists in the Nazis' early experiments with euthanasia that led to the Final Solution; April 8-11.
  • "Smoke Signals" (United States 1998), an affectionate and witty look at contemporary American Indian lives written by Sherman Alexie; April 22-25.
  • Complete film schedule information is available from the Activities and Programs Office, (715) 836-4833.

    UWEC [Administrative Offices] [News Bureau]

    Janice B. Wisner
    UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
    Schofield 218
    (715) 836-4741

    Updated: Jan. 29, 1999