Dan Friedkin’s engrossing directorial debut is based on the true story of the 20th century’s most ingenious art forger. It follows Han van Meegeren (Guy Pearce), a famous socialite, who is said to have profited from the sale of a Vermeer painting to Hermann Göring, one of the most powerful figures in the Nazi party. Van Meegeren doesn’t deny that a sale took place, but just how deep do his ties to his despotic clients run? While damning evidence accumulates, Dutch investigator Piller (Claes Bang) and his brilliant assistant (Vicky Krieps), peel away the layers of a story that is far more than meets the eye. The stoic Pillar is at first immune to the crafty van Meegeren’s seemingly tall tales, until he finds his allegiances tested. This reversal of fortunes sees him go to great lengths to fight for the suspect’s right to a fair trial. Friedkin’s film is an absorbing, suspenseful drama that reckons with the moral morass of postwar Europe and questions how we place value on art.
The Last Vermeer