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  • Soldier Of Orange (1977)
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Soldier Of Orange (1977)

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DVD 1-Disc Version
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Product Details

  • Actors: Rutger Hauer, Jeroen Krabbé, Susan Penhaligon, Edward Fox, Lex van Delden
  • Directors: Paul Verhoeven
  • Writers: Paul Verhoeven, Erik Hazelhoff Roelfzema, Gerard Soeteman, Kees Holierhoek
  • Producers: Rob Houwer
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: Dutch (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: April 24, 2001
  • Run Time: 156 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305972885
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #151,108 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Soldier Of Orange (1977)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Still gallery

Editorial Reviews


Based on real events, Soldier of Orange tells the story of Dutchman Erik Lanshof (a star-making performance by Rutger Hauer) and a small group of students as they struggle to survive the Nazi occupation to the end of the Second World War. The destinies of the characters range from joining the German army to making for England, the OSS, and the Resistance. Across a canvas lasting almost three hours, director Paul Verhoeven unfolds a saga of friendship, espionage, and romance with almost documentary realism--though not as graphically violent as his later American films, the torture scenes are intense--crafting a deeply affecting film widely regarded as the greatest ever made in Holland. Comparable recent films such as Enigma (2001) and Charlotte Gray (2002) do not come close. Hauer is brilliant at the heart of what is a detailed and thoughtful drama made with integrity and passion. Twenty years later in 1997, Verhoeven made Starship Troopers, a satirical science-fiction companion to this modern European classic. --Gary S. Dalkin

Customer Reviews

Some people run like mad.
Dianne Foster
Yet another amazing film from Paul Verhoeven with so much depth and weight I can't even tell you.
M. Hencke
One of the best WWII movies I have ever seen, and the only one I recall from Holland.
C. A. Luster

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 36 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 29, 2000
Format: DVD
This is the only film that captures that thin line between heroism and betrayal in the Dutch experience from the innocence of that autumn of 1939 until the early days of Liberation in 1945. The uniqueness of this film lies in the character of the author/main character, Erik (played by Rutger Hauer) and his friend who both were "one of the few who stood up to be counted" joining a fledgling resistance in the early part of the war and lived to tell the tale.

The director, Paul Verhoeven retains a Dutch matter-of-factness, which combined with the superb soundtrack by Rogier van Otterloo infuses the film with a sense of anticipation never before or since achieved in a Dutch film.

It is no coincidence that the tale starts at pre-war Leiden University, which was founded as a direct result of the First Dutch War of Independence in 1575 and was closed in 1941 because its staff and students protested and went on strike against discrimination of its Jewish Professors. A poignant final scene in Wassenaar brings home that also in peace the innocent can still be a victim.

The portrayal of the indomitable Dutch Queen Wilhelmina (played by Andrea Domburg) and her special relationship with her "Engelandvaarders"("The England Bound") shows why the Orange factor acted as the focal point for maintaining Dutch national integrity.

The film allows a unique two and a half-hour window on what the Dutch faced in those five years.(This review refers to the 1995 Dutch edition)
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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By C. O. DeRiemer TOP 1000 REVIEWER on September 28, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a first-rate movie of WWII and, in my view, the best movie Paul Verhoeven has made to date. The Germans invade The Netherlands and a group of six university friends are caught up in the events that follow. Some join the Resistance and remain in the country, one tries to ignore what's happening, two escape to England to be trained for a dangerous mission, one joins the SS. The lead character is played by Rutger Hauer. It is he and his friend, played by Jeroen Krabbe, who make their way across the Channel. The movie is long but moves briskly and is full of incidents that are gripping and cinematic. The mission that sends Hauer and Krabbe back to their country goes very wrong, and people die as a result. The Hauer character, who was based on a real person, survives the war. Most of his friends don't. One who does, managed to survive by having to make a terrible choice. In fact, all the choices this group of friends make are simply shown with the consequences. There are no false heroics or tin nobility. Perhaps because of this, the movie was not especially well-received when it first opened in The Netherlands.

If any of Verhoeven's movies are watched forty years from now, I suspect this will be the one. Starship Troopers and RoboCop are a lot of fun, but they're essentially comic book movies before comic book movies became Hollywood's latest fashion. Total Recall and Basic Instinct are, to me, efficient but little more. Soldier of Orange is the work of a guy who understands a character-driven story and who has the skills to turn it into a dramatic but still character-driven movie.

Hauer and Krabbe are both excellent. Krabbe continues to work at being an excellent actor. He takes the money for some foolish stuff, but also selects many interesting films to appear in.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Klaas W van der Molen on May 15, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Soldier of Orange with commentary by Director Paul Verhoeven is a must-see for all history buffs, WWII historians and lovers of war movies. Based on the life of Erik Haselhoff Roelfzema, it chronicles his life in the resistance and that of a small group of law students in Leiden, The Netherlands. Verhoeven's commentary is worth the price of the DVD as he explains scene by scene what he tried to portray, while asking some very thought provoking questions. Verhoeven and I are the same age, and both of us lived in Holland during the occupation. His view of the conditions in Holland and the responses of the Dutch under occupation are very different. I also think his references to Das England Spiel are inaccurate. Having said all that, I still consider the DVD one of my most favorite productions, including the film itself. Soldaat van Oranje is my choice for best ever Dutch film. Those interested in learning more about the real Eric Hazelhoff Roelfzema should read "Soldaat van Oranje Omnibus" which includes "De Verre Tamboer (The Distant Drummer)" and "Op Jacht naar het Leven (In pursuit of Life)" all by Eric Hazelhoff Roelfzema.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By pje911 on April 20, 2001
Format: DVD
This film is an absolute Dutch classic! It is about a group of Dutch students who meet at their fraternity initiation in 1938 in Leiden. We follow them from the tense pre-war days to the end of WWII. They take a photo of their group just before the war starts. From there they drift in different directions. Erik Lanshof gets involved in the resistance, while Alex decides to join the Waffen SS. It tells the universal story of courage and betrayal. One of the most dramatic moments for me was at the end of the movie when they show the pre-war photo of all friends, knowing what had happened to all of them. Every time it leaves me with a feeling of great sadness about the suffering that the war has brought. Arguably the best scene is where Erik enters occupied Holland and ends up in the middle of a German drinking party. To his surprise he finds Alex there and they dance a most remarkable Tango. My grandmothers both experienced life in occupied Holland and I heard from them first hand stories about betrayal and abuse of power. I can only imagine by watching this movie what it must have been like. I have seen this film many times over and, a sign of a true classic film, it only gets better.
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