1938. A small group of Dutch students stop their tennis game momentarily to hear of England's entry into World War II. Erik and his friends don't show much concern at first. But when Queen Wilhelmina flees Holland for London and the Germans move in, it becomes necessary to choose sides.
Soldier of Orange, directed by Paul Verhoeven (Turkish Delights) is based on the true life adventures of Erik Hazelhoff who received numerous decorations including Holland's highest honor the Militaire Willems-orde. It is interesting to see how Erik's friends take different courses: a Jew inevitably dies once the German's arrive; another associate joins the Nazi army; a third becomes active in the Dutch resistance movement; and a fourth betrays everyone in order to save his Jewish girlfriend.
Erik (Rutger Hauer) and his buddy Guus (Jeroen Krabbe) find sanctuary in London. They return to their homeland on a dangerous mission for Queen Wilhelmina to rescue some important Dutch political and military leaders. Guus is killed and Erik survives to become a RAF pilot. Following the Allied victory over Germany, Erik (now adjutant to the Queen) meets with the only other living members of his original group of friends a scholarly and mild fellow who stayed alive by taking no position at all.
Soldier of Orange is carried along by its own considerable momentum. It offers an involving look at the ravages of war.