DAILY | Rome 2012 | Paul Verhoeven’s TRICKED

“The genesis of Tricked sounds like something Lars von Trier might have dreamed up as part of The Five Obstructions,” suggests Kaleem Aftab at Indiewire. “Paul Verhoeven was commissioned to make a user-generated film, the first four minutes of which were devised by the Dutch director; then the public was asked to write the next four minutes of script. From the submissions, one script would be chosen as the next segment before another call out was made, and the process would continue until there was enough material for an hourlong television film. Talk about high concept.”

Screening alongside the making-of doc Paul’s Experience, Tricked (Steekspel) has “provided what the Rome Film Festival so far has rather lacked,” finds Jessica Kiang, writing at the Playlist: “sheer entertainment value. A twisty-turny arch drama in which a philandering man’s chickens come home to roost in every area of his life, it feels like not a single scene passes without a major revelation occurring somewhere. As a result it’s kind of a blast, with fully enough plot to fill a two-hour feature crammed efficiently into less than half that time in a manner that demands nothing from you except that you enjoy the ride.”

Jordan Mintzer in the Hollywood Reporter: “Despite what often feels like an A.D.D. narrative, the plotlines remain fairly succinct, while the performances are spirited in a sitcom kind of way, with the actors maintaining a rapid pace and shooting off a few zingers here and there. Unfortunately, the tech credits are also extremely TV-friendly, with the action confined to overlit interior spaces that look way too video-ish through the lens of an Arri Alexa, making one long for Verhoeven’s eventual return to the big screen.”

Celluloid Liberation Front finds Tricked to be a “remarkably well-crafted and likeable film” and interviews Verhoeven for Filmmaker. 74 now, he’s “working on an American project. It’s now written, and it’s called Rogue, a noir about a rogue cop, drug cartels, etc. I’m having some problems with the funding because in this film the hero dies and when that is the case it’s not easy to find money. I’m also preparing a European movie to be shot in Indonesia, called Hidden Force. It’s about a promiscuous woman, politics, the rise of political Islam and occult, paranormal things happening… maybe. It could be real as well as unreal… It’s all set in Indonesia in the 19th century, it’s a very interesting project.”

Update, 11/15: “Discerning Verhoeven’s hand in it all is difficult, though true to the helmer’s more intimate style, it largely revolves around sex, and has a few fun plot twists, as to be expected when the script has 397 collaborators,” writes Variety‘s Jay Weissberg.

Update, 11/26: Jessica Kiang talks with Coppola.

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