Review: Into Nothing (2013)


Directed by: Daniel Lawrence Bruce | 50 minutes | drama | Actors: Issaka Sawadogo, Lulu Veen, Lolu Ajayi, Rachella Kingswijk, Joy Wielkens

The Bijlmer disaster, 1992. An event that made a big impression on the Netherlands. After more than twenty years, “Into Nothing” is the first film in which the plane crash, which takes place against the background of the story, is highlighted. The disaster officially had 43 fatalities, but due to the large number of undocumented people living there, the actual death toll has never been known.

“Into Nothing” is about such an undocumented migrant. The Ghanaian Agymah lives, together with a few others who are in the same boat, in a (too) small gallery house in the Bijlmer. Agymah no longer goes out and has little zest for life. When twelve-year-old Nina arrives in the Netherlands, also without documents, and moves in with Agymah, he is more or less forced to take care of her. Her enthusiasm and ambition trigger something in him that has been stuck for a long time.

“In nothing” is spoken in English and the fact that one is not distracted by the umpteenth Dutch celebrity is no more than favorable. The leading roles are played by Isaka Sawadogo and newcomer Lulu Veen, who gained some fame with the TV program “My name is”. It was filmed with a handheld camera and close-ups are used a lot. Because of this, and because of the fantastic acting, you quickly bond with the characters. Even though ‘Into Nothing’ is relatively short at fifty minutes, it still manages to build up to an impressive and moving story within that time.

“Into Nothing” takes place in non-chronological order. As a viewer, you have known for a long time that a plane is going to crash – the film even starts with it – but by postponing certain information you as a viewer become curious and slowly but surely the story unravels. By occasionally misleading the viewer, the film manages to convey the right tension and emotion. But above all, “In nothing” is an ode to those who came to the Netherlands for a better life, but were struck by such a terrible fate.

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