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An Angel in Doel

De engel van Doel
Director: Tom Fassaert

Netherlands, Belgium, documentary, 2011, 77 min
“An Angel in Doel” is a dramatic documentary film about an elderlywoman, living in the disappearing village of Doel – a 700 year old village on the river Scheldt in Belgium. Near to the local nuclear power plant, with its two giant cooling towers, it became the target for demolition in order to make way for the ever expanding harbour. The residents began to leave, the government refused to rent out the properties again and instead let them fall into disrepair. After some time the government decided that before the demolition the residents must vacate their homes. While Doel is slowly dying, the elderly Emilienne attempts to keep up a pretence of
normality. At her kitchen table village life seems to continue like nothing has changed. But when her close friends leave, the village priest dies and demolition begins, the downfall seems inevitable. Will she ultimately also be forced to let go? “An Angel in Doel” is a touching film about human struggle against the inevitable: his own mortality.
 
Awards:
 
2011 – Prize of the Ecumenical Jury – Special Mention for film director Tom Fassaert at the Berlin International Film Festival (Germany).
 
About the director:
 
Dutch film director Tom Fassaert, born in 1979, grew up in both the Netherlands and South Africa before studying documentary film at the Dutch Film Academy in Amsterdam. In 2006 Fassaert graduated with the critically acclaimed documentary short “Doel’s lifes” (Doel Leeft), wich was nominated for the Tuschinski Award at the Dutch Film Festival and received an honorary mention from the jury at the DOK Leipzig festival, Germany. Since his graduation, T. Fassaert has made several short documentaries, edited a feature length music documentary for director Frank Scheffer and wrote a script for a feature length documentary titled “Sons of the Sun” (Zonen van den Zon, 2007). In the meantime Fassaert stayed emotionally connected to Doel and its last residents, and decided to complete the story that started with his graduation film. After five years he finally finished shooting and in 2011 his debut feature length documentary “An Angel in Doel” was born.
Section: Identity

Screenplay: Tom Fassaert

Dir. of Photography: Daniël Bouquet, Diderik Evers, Reinout Steenhuizen

Music: Tobias Borkert