Het beloofde land

The Promised Land

  • John Appel
  • Netherlands
  • 2000
  • 50 min
  • Special Screenings: 10 Commandments
‘Man lay dead in apartment for six months.’ This regularly recurring headline inspired John Appel to make a film about the sixth commandment, ‘You shall not murder.’ With scanty means, he reconstructs the life of an unknown man. The film shows how everybody - relatives, ex-colleagues and neighbours - gradually loses grip of the main character and fails to notice for a long time that he has died. Initially, the stories and memories are vague and simple, but step by step the portrait becomes clearer and more beautiful. Appel does not interpret the commandment literally. He examines it in the philosophical sense of the word and raises the question whether society as a whole might be held responsible for these cases of death. Or should we respect someone’s choice to live in solitude and therefore also to die in solitude?


  • 50 min
  • color
  • video
  • Spoken languages: Dutch
John Appel
Paul de Bont for Paul de Bont Producties, Film & Video Support
Peter Brugman, Erik van Empel
Ot Louw
Alex Booy

IDFA history

Special Screenings: 10 Commandments

special screenings - Errol Morris

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IDFA history

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