The shipyard painter, political activist and razor-sharp cartoonist Bob Starrett has just written a new book The Way I See It on his eventful life and times. Below we reprint one of his stories and review an essential read
Director Michael R Roskam's debut film, a driven tale of revenge, redemption and loss of innocence, is set against the backdrop of the workings of the Belgian mafia.
In it the young and stalwart cattle farmer Jacky helps his uncle run the family meat business. But when their vet suggests supplying their beef to a new client, who deals in illegal cattle growth hormones, things start to fall apart. The latter happens to be one of the biggest hormone traffickers in Flanders and has the cop who was investigating him killed.
Jacky, who injects himself with strong doses of testosterone, confronts the awful truth of horrifying events 20 years previously which start to emerge in a narrative which is as gripping as a thriller.
As a psychological drama of abuse it's absolutely authentic, aided by the realism of Nicolas Karakatsanis's cinematography, which perfectly depicts both the landscape and provides telling close-ups of the main character Jacky (the marvellous Belgian actor Matthias Schoenaerts) living in the most isolated of conditions.
Unsurprisingly, Bullhead is in the running for the best foreign film Oscar and it's sure to confirm Roskam as a director to watch.