An interview with Remco Texer's on the making of Hazegrauw
By: Trevor Brooks
If there was an immortality pill, would you take it? That’s the question at the heart of Remco Texer’s short film, Hazegrauw. The film is visually surrealistic, and focuses mainly on a philosophic discussion about whether we should want to live forever. Today we have the opportunity to ask Texer a few questions.
Trevor Brooks, Phoenix Journal (PJ): First off, I have to ask: Would you take the pill?
Remco Texer (RT): I would take the pill but under conditions: if the ones I love would not take the pill, I won't take it either. A warm and social environment as I know and feel it nowadays is essential for me. You can say: but you can build a new life with new friends, but that feels not the same.
(PJ): What inspired you to make this film?
(RT): Philosofic themes are my favorite ones. On a film premiere I was talking with Frits Lambrechts about subjects as "extended life" and " what's the meaning of life". I challenged him that if I write a scenario about these subjects and if he "felt" what I want to say with this script, he would play the main character. Said and done.
(PJ): What I found to be the most interesting philosophic point was the idea Frederick mentions, that without children, there will be no social change. Do you think that’s true? (RT): I really think that's true. Most of our social and cultural revolutions came from young people. They have ideals and no responsibilities with financial restrictions as a job and mortgage. When your become older, you get used to conservative ideas because you can't keep up anymore. It's not that older people want that on purpose but you have to slow down...if you want or not.
(PJ): The acting was great. Could you tell us about the casting process? (RT): As I said, I've met Frits Lambrechts by coincidence at a premiere. He's a famous actor in the Netherlands and he stayed in my house because the director of that premiere movie (I knew him of a film class) needed a place for Frits to sleep. After he agreed to take part in my film he knew a woman, also a famous actress in the Netherlands, who could play his wife Roos. So I'm still proud and honored to have such actors in my film, you can imagine. (PJ): Frederick isn’t absolutely sure, but he seems fairly certain that he will see his wife and child again after death. Do you think he would have chosen differently if he was convinced that there was nothing after death? (RT): Well, he also thinks it's naïve to see them in the afterlife but he truly wants to believe it. It gives him strength and hope. Thom York once told about the funeral of his grandpa and someone read a poem with the words: I'm not left, I'm just in the next room. Beautiful spoken and tempers the pain. Perhaps Frederick felt and hoped for the same.
(PJ): I really liked the song at the end. Could you speak about that? (RT): I heard it once on television and it caught me. The lyrics suit well to the story I wanted to tell. Frits Lambrechts was a singer in the past so he was willing to sing this fragile song. It's an ode to love because in the end it's love that never dies. (PJ): Do you think living forever would deprive our lives of meaning? Why or why not? (RT): It's just a personally way of thinking if it deprives you or not. Each human being has to find out what makes his life meaningful. Personally I think it deprives us from meaning because the awareness that your life is ending at 85 years gives you a drive to do the things you want but on other thoughts extended life gives you a chance to make it meaningful if it's not at that moment. Furthermore it also depends on your social and economic situation: very rich people with all their advantages in life wants to live forever. Very poor people with much less chances will not have that drive to live forever... (PJ): Could you tell us about any upcoming projects? (RT): I'm just started to write my second script: a religious story about the Free Will. Do we really have a free will or is everything already meant to be? Again a philosophic drama but I like to tickle people and excite them to learn more about themselves. Just a sort of reflection.