The Last Vermeer (DVD) – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Drama
Director: Dan Friedkin
Distributor: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Duration: 118 minutes

The Last Vermeer (DVD) – Movie Review

Site Score
Good: Acting, Great story
Bad: A bit slow at times
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(1 votes)
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Rating: 9.0/10 (1 vote cast)

When games or movies are made about the Second World War, these often involve brutal scenes in concentration camps, bloody battles and the poverty of those under the yoke of the German occupation. This time, however, it’s a different story that is being told, namely that of Han van Meegeren’s trial, who was thought to be a collaborator by selling authentic Dutch classic paintings to German high-ranked officers. His trial was a very big deal at the time and still is.

The Last Vermeer tells us the story of when Han van Meegeren (Guy Pearce) gets arrested after the Second World War. He is accused of selling one of the biggest Dutch classic paintings to the Germans. He gets arrested by captain Joseph Piller (Claes Bang), a man determined to find and sentence all these collaborators. While he thinks little of Han at the beginning, he soon believes there’s more than meets the eye when it comes to the eccentric failed painter. When the police want to take over from Piller and just have Han shot down by a firing squad, Piller breaks him out of his cell to see what Han is hiding and if he truly is a collaborator.

The flow of this film is somewhat what you’ve come to expect of movies such as this. You’ll have a proper introduction, only for the investigation to take up the biggest chunk of the film. While those knowing the story behind the film will undoubtedly know how the movie ends (for the most part), it’s still a very interesting story to experience. There is not much action in the film which may be a turn-off if you’re looking for a generic war story. That being said, the attention to detail is perfectly handled in this film, and the story is told in a proper and believable fashion.

Even though several cast members pass the revue of this film, the main roles are being played by Guy Pearce and Claes Bang. Pearce plays the somewhat eccentric Han van Meegeren, who rather shows than tells when it comes to his innocence. His flamboyant behavior is perfectly portrayed and we were immediately captivated by this persona. Claes Bang plays the more timid captain Joseph Piller, who wants to catch all Nazi collaborators, but it’s clear he is doubtful of van Meegeren’s supposed guilt. He also nails his role as a moral compass. Other roles are also handled with the necessary grace or poise and there is not a single moment that the acting makes you drop out of the immersion.

The DVD edition of The Last Vermeer sadly comes with no special features at all. While the movie speaks for itself, some background material would have been nice. It would have been very interesting and informative to learn more about the actual trial, perhaps see some of the forged paintings, and so on. We believe that there is more than enough source material, to add a bit of meat to the bones of this physical release.


The Last Vermeer is a very interesting movie that is based on true events. We get to experience the trial of Han van Meegeren from start to finish, with enough twists and turns to be surprised about this 20th-century story. While the movie may move at a slow pace, it does heighten the atmosphere and we can only recommend this film to those who are generally interested in the period after the Second World War.

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Rating: 9.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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The Last Vermeer (DVD) - Movie Review, 9.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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