Cinedelphia met up with actress Hadewych Minis at the AFI Fest in Los Angeles last November to talk about her new film Borgman, a thriller by Dutch filmmaker Alex van Warmerdam, out in theaters this weekend.
Cinedelphia: How did Borgman come about?
Hadewych Minis: The director, Alex van Warmerdam came up with the idea because he wanted to make a film about the dark side of human beings. He’s a big fan of Buñuel and Hitchcock and he wanted to do something with horror elements.
C: Why did a film with horror elements appeal to you?
HM: I’m such a big fan of his work, I was honored to play the leading lady in the film. I had to do one scene where my husband beats me in a dream sequence. I really liked it. It’s very technical, it’s more like a choreographed dance. It was a difficult part because there are big emotions, and Alex is more interested in the face before the big emotions. He was very strict on the details.
C: What can you say about working with the actor who plays Borgman?
HM: He’s very sweet, such an adorable guy, really warm. He plays a dark kind of demon. He had such a clear part to play, so we could switch it on and off. In America, they really stay in character and it helps them.
C: What was challenging about playing Marina?
HM: It is difficult to play. I am [her character is] so intrigued by Borgman. He bewitched me in a way. The mother transforms to being an almost robot, and that’s very millimeter acting.
C: What can you say about the issues of good and evil in the film?
HM: I think about Breaking Bad. You have a certain idea about Walter White, and by the end, your idea totally changed. Your ideas about bad and good are totally gone. Who is the bad one and who is the good one. Borgman (and his troop) do terrible things but it’s not like you hate them. There is no black and white. Alex likes that people who watch the film make up their own story about the film. He doesn’t want to explain everything. He’s very inspired by Buñuel’s Belle du Jour.
C: How do you explain the movie?
HM: I don’t think it’s fun to explain my version of the story. And of course, I made my own story, because otherwise, it would be difficult to play. But I don’t think it’s interesting to give that answer because there is not one explanation to the movie.
Borgman opens today in Philly area theaters.
Author: Gary M. Kramer
Gary M. Kramer is a Philadelphia-based freelance writer. He is the co-editor of Directory of World Cinema: Argentina. Volumes 1 and 2, and teaches seminars at the Bryn Mawr Film Institute. Follow him on Twitter @garymkramer.