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Directed by Boudewijn Koole

  • Netherlands 2012; 81 min
  • Original version: Dutch
  • Genre: Drama
    • International Jury award & First Movie Award in Generation Kplus - Berlin IFF
    • European Discovery of the Year, Young Audience Award - European Film Awards
    • Dutch Film Critics Award, Golden Calf for Best Music - Nederlands FF
    • Directors Week Best Screenplay Award - Fantasporto IFF

  • From the director of DISAPPEARANCE presented at Cinemart

    Dutch submission for the Academy Awards


Times are hard for Jojo. This ten year old boy lives alone with his father, a bear-like night watchman, in a rural area. And what about his mother? Is she really touring the U.S. as a country singer? The father tries to hide his despair. But he drinks, sleeps fully dressed in his bed and is out of control. Why does he forbid Jojo to make his mother a cake for her birthday? Jojo is left to himself with his many questions and worries. Father and son need time to learn to deal with the drama in their family. Jojo’s only solace is a young jackdaw that has fallen out of his nest, and which he secretly takes in. Rearing the little bird, which is even more vulnerable than himself, gives Jojo a feeling of happiness and responsibility. A girl from his swimming club also becomes interested in him. But when the truth about his mother can no longer be denied, he is still at risk of losing his fragile hold on life. With his first feature-length film Boudewjin Koole has succeeded in creating a touching portrait of a boy who is struggling with a difficult family situation. Every detail reflects his need, but also his unbridled joy at the beautiful moments in his life.

Director's Statement

The original idea for KAUWBOY grew out of one of my childhood memories. One spring when I was young, a crow came to my window and stayed for three months. I later read somewhere that these birds can become very attached to humans if they are separated from their parents at an early age. Because I also like to see the father-son relationship I put this together with a smart bird, which later turned out to be a jackdaw. Together with Jolein Laarman I wrote the story of KAUWBOY. I hope you have as much fun watching the film KAUWBOY as I did making it. Enjoy!



    Stefanie Van Houcke