Cirque Hollandais

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After years of touring abroad with his "Cirque Hollandais", Hendrik van Dalen returns to Holland, hoping that his brother Willem, a well-to-do farmer, will be able to help him with money. Since the death of his wife, things have gone from bad to worse with Hendrik who drowns his sorrow in drink. Moreover, he has set his heart on the circus-equestrienne, who pretends to love him but is having an affair with the company's wrestler. By encouraging Hendrik to drink, they hope to be able to get their hands on his possessions. Hendrik's daughter sees through their designs and, with the aid of the clown Louisot, tries to foil their plans.

In the meantime, Willem van Dalen finds himself in financial difficulties. The loss of an important lawsuit has totally ruined him. An old and faithful farm-hand sets fire to his farm-house so that the compensation from the fire-insurance can save his master, but he pays for his deed with his life. Willem's daughter is in love with the son of his enemy, a war-profiteer. When she tells her father, he turns her out of the house. She flees to the young man and they run away together and get married. When the circus arrives, the farm-house has just been burnt down and Willem cannot help his brother. Hendrik, completely disheartened, seeks solace in still more drink, but is given moral support by Louisot. The wrestler tries to get rid of the clown by causing an accident in which Louisot makes an almost fatal fall. For Hendrik, whose health has declined, especially after he hears that his debts make it necessary for the circus to be sold, the shock is too great and he dies.

Fate has not been kind to the newly-weds either. The young man is not able to earn anything and his wife leaves him, hoping that he will go back to his father and be able to continue his studies. This he does, but he is determined not to rest until he has found his wife again. She has found refuge in her uncle's circus company. Finally, Willem and his former enemy decide, for the sake of their children, to forget their feud. When Willem's daughter comes back home to the farm after the death of the circus manager, her husband is overjoyed to find her there. Hendrik's daughter and the clown Louisot, who has always loved her, also find a safe home with the farmer.


original title
Cirque Hollandais
foreign release title
Circus Hollandais
alternative title
Het Hollandsche circus
production year
release date
original distributor
production company





Technical notations

Black & White


G. Donaldson, Of Joy and Sorrow. A Filmography of Dutch Silent Fiction, Amsterdam (1997), pp. 246-247

Kunst en Amusement No. 23, 1924, p. 276

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