Dikkenek is a great Franco-Belgian comedy, created in 2006. After its modest release (well, let me say it bluntly - after its initial failure at the Box office), the film gradually acquired a reputation as a cult movie following its video release. Several reasons can explain the craze for this rather nasty fable. One of them is definitely the way it displays the Belgian type of humor. Another reason is certainly the list of Belgian and French actors starring in the movie: Marion Cotillard, Mélanie Laurent, Florence Foresti (a French actress who started her career producing sketches and one-woman shows, and for whom the role in Dikkenek was the first opportunity to act in movies), François Damiens (see below for more about him), among others.
Dikkenek is an expression from Brussels to describe a “big-mouthed”, a “know-it-all” and lesson giving person. It tells the story of J.C. who wants to help his childhood friend, Stef, find true love. The love could be with Natacha, a young student with no ambitions, who had the misfortune to meet Claudy, the perverse director of the Anderlecht slaughterhouses, and a charming photographer in his spare time. Stef finally finds love with Natacha's friend Nadine, a hysterical school teacher with drug problems. And there is also another character that is central in the movie: the lesbian and racist police officer, Laurence.
François Damiens first made a name for himself in the French-speaking Belgium (and later in France) with his hidden camera videos, a field in which he became an undisputed master in the late 1990s and into the early 2000s. Until the day when he could no longer go unnoticed... He then became more widely known in the cinema, first in comedy (eg. l'Arnacoeur), and then in a dramatic register (eg. the Famille Bélier). Later, given his undeniable talent, the nominations for "César" (a sort of French Oscar ceremony) for the best actor only added up over time.
The movie takes place mainly in Brussels, and a bit in Flanders. As one of the main characters in the film is the director of the Anderlecht slaughterhouses, this place (picture here below) is one of the very first you will see in the movie.
Also, the primary school where Nadine teaches is a central location in the movie. You can, for sure, go and just see it in the south of the capital.
Other filming locations are a bit more famous, as is, for example, the Place du Congrès, that you can see here below, with its Column commemorating the writing of the Constitution in 1830. This iconic place in Brussels is rather close to the center of the town.
Whether you are familiar with Belgian humour or not, whether you are an unconditional fan of the film Dikkenek or have never seen it, it is always special for film lovers to immerse themselves in the "real" atmosphere of a film that has been a resounding success.
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