This particular salute to Holocaust heroes is a marked improvement over earlier entries in the Showtime-produced RESCUERS series. Both parts of TWO COUPLES exhibit a smoother narrative flow and a fuller depiction of European settings.
In "Aart and Joht Je Vos," Dutch couple Aart Vos (Martin Donovan) and Joht Je Vos (Dana Delany) save Jewish musicians at their wedding. Subsequently, with the aid of a sympathetic cop who signals them about Nazi visits, the couple makes a wartime career of hiding Jews in their home. While Aart
obtains forged identification papers from the Resistance fighters, Joht Je endures house searches by an S.S. Lieutenant. Suspicious but unable to blow her cover, the Lieutenant turns Joht Je's neighbors against her by revealing her German ancestry and making a display of giving her preferential
ration treatment. The Vos's mission faces exposure when a family friend is caught; but rather than denounce them, he submits to a firing squad to protect their network of salvation, which thrives until the liberation of Holland.
In "Marie Taquet," Belgian school administrator Marie Taquet (Linda Hamilton) is stunned to learn that her husband Emile (Alfred Molina) has turned their school for the sons of gentile POWs into a refuge for Jewish children. Despite the lack of comprehension on the part of younger wards, Marie
indoctrinates the Jewish boys into new Catholic identities. While placating Nazi officers, Marie molds one anti-Semitic student into the youngsters' greatest protector and cautions a Jewish teen that his decision to flaunt his religion endangers the lives of everyone. At the war's end, the
childless Taquets sadly hand over their pupils to grateful parents and refugee organizations. A coda notes that the rescued children held a reunion in Marie Taquet's honor in 1988, the year before she died.
Although this series of films made for cable TV has much to learn about creating a histrionically convincing rendition of European history, these period pieces overcome some of the awkwardness of American actors caught in this bind. Sidestepping the flat-footed direction and coyness that marred
the RESCUERS entry TWO WOMEN, these yarns combine suspenseful scenes of Nazi inspections with touching human interest. Of the two morality plays, "Marie Taquet" is the more trenchant, a sort of wartime GOOD MORNING MISS DOVE (1958) saga climaxing in the heartbreaking finale of Marie bidding adieu
to her charges. In chronicling quiet courage, both segments shine a spotlight on the sort of unostentatious bravery that doesn't get highlighted in history texts. (Violence, profanity, adult situations.)
Cast & Details See all »
- Released: 1998
- Rating: PG
- Review: This particular salute to Holocaust heroes is a marked improvement over earlier entries in the Showtime-produced RESCUERS series. Both parts of TWO COUPLES exhibit a smoother narrative flow and a fuller depiction of European settings. In "Aart and Joht Je… (more)