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Business Is Business
cast: Ronnie Beirman, Sylvia de Leur, Piet Romer, Jules Hamel, and Bernard Droog

director: Paul Verhoeven

89 minutes (18) 1971
widescreen 1.55:1
Tartan DVD Region '0' retail

RATING: 6/10
reviewed by Gary Couzens
Blonde Greet (Ronnie Beirman) is a prostitute working in Amsterdam's red light district. For her, every man's fantasy is available for a price. But then she falls in love...
   Business Is Business (which played in UK cinemas in 1972 as Any Special Way) was Paul Verhoeven's debut feature and, although it's minor work by his standards, it's still fast moving and entertaining. More of an out-and-out comedy - mixing slapstick and a kitschy 1970s score with soft porn - than his other films, it's surprisingly benevolent. Even this early, Verhoeven's worldview is in place: a frank, unsparing (at times nihilistic) look at human nature, and an unembarrassed attitude to sex. Only this time, the laughs are on the surface, rather than against the grain as with more subversive films such as The Fourth Man and much of his Hollywood output. In his first film, many of his key creative partners are already in place: writer Gerard Soeteman, producer Rob Houwer, and also cinematographer Jan De Bont, who went with Verhoeven to Hollywood. His work here has that bright look characteristic of the late 1960s and early 1970s.
   Tartan's DVD release, part of their Verhoeven collection (which includes Turkish Delight, and Soldier Of Orange) has Dolby digital sound and English subtitles. Disc extras: star and director filmographies, film notes by David Parkinson, original trailer, and world cinema trailers.