Opening June 15, 2017
Directed by: Anna van der Heide
Writing credits: Mieke de Jong
Principal actors: Jeroen Spitzenberger, Yenthe Bos, Georgina Verbaan
Franz (Spitzenberger) is a grade-school teacher, well loved by all of his pupils. He is fun and creative, and the fact that, occasionally, he suddenly turns into a frog just seems to be a natural characteristic of his overall personality. His pupil Sita (Bos) and her friend Wouter organize their classmates to care for Franz during his frog phases, i.e., when he is small and helpless and needs flies for lunch. They protect him from natural enemies such as the stork. All is well until Director Storch, the new principal, arrives. Not only is he critical of Franz’s teaching methods, the fact that his name translates to “stork” creates a fearful premonition of what could go wrong. Cecile (Verbaan) is the single mother of Sita. She is an excellent veterinarian who cares for sick animals, but has little time for Sita, who dreams of a “real” mother who stays at home and bakes cookies.
This Dutch film by Anna van der Heide is for children of all ages who are considered old enough to go to a movie. “Real” animals were filmed most of the time, with occasionally a mechanical frog or a marionette stork filling in for difficult scenes. Ten-year-old Yenthe Bos is already a mature, experienced actress. It is based on the book Meester Kikker by Paul van Loon. (Becky T.)