People from 0 to 100 years in 150 seconds (video)

Kanaal van Filmersblog says:

In October 2011 I started documenting people in the city of Amsterdam, approaching them in the street and asking them to say their age in front of the camera. My aim was to 'collect' a group of 100 people, from age 0 to 100. At first my collection grew fast but slowed down when it got down to the very young and very old. The young because of sensivity around filming or photographing children and the very old because they don't get out of the house much. I found my very old 'models' in care homes and it was a privilege to document these -often vulnerable- people for this project. I had particular problems finding a 99 year-old. (Apparently 100 year-olds enjoy notoriety, but a 99 year-old is a rare species...) And when I finally did find one, she refused to state her age. She simply denied being 99 years old! But finally, some 4 months after I recorded my first 'age', I was able to capture the 'missing link' and conclude this project.
"Life is long if you know how to use it." -- Seneca.

'100' (from 0 to 100 years in 150 seconds)


  1. Something that will not be appreciated by those who speak the language, is the gradual change of accent over the ages. I’m sure such a thing must exist in all languages, but it is hard to identify such subtile differences in a learned tongue.

    1. I saw an article the other day saying that QE2 has started slipping into an estuarine accent if you compare her speech now compared with 60 or so years ago.

      1. the QE2 only slips into an estuarine accent when the tide is high enough to permit her to sail into the littoral zone.

    2.  One thing that stood out to me, visually, was how much more diverse the younger generation of Amsterdamers was. It’s a less subtle indicator of cultural/demographic shifts than accent, but at least it’s one anyone with eyes can notice.

    3. Instead, I noticed with what enthusiasm and at what age they announced their ages; I watched the facial expressions and body language.  The young  were gleeful and the old were amazed; those in their middle years seemed more nonplussed.

  2. This would be a great video to send into space (is that possible, technically speaking?) as an informative and friendly gesture to whomever may be out there.

    1. Beautiful, ephemeral species seeks mature alien partner.  Must be willing to coevolve.  No arachnids, pls.

    1. Yeah, when I was in Amsterdam I had a hard time telling the difference between Dutch and the heavily accented couple from Liverpool staying in my hostel. The great thing is that, at least in the large cities, almost everyone speaks at least some and usually very good English. After a bit of culture shock backpacking around the rest of Europe, Amsterdam felt like home.

  3. “Kanaal van Filmersblog” translates as “Film Makers’ Blog Channel”. The film’s director is called Jeroen Wolf, as the end credits clearly show. Incidentally, eighty-two (tweeëntachtig) is spoken by the renowned Dutch novelist Remco Campert. [edited – see below]

  4. I am hard of hearing and wear hearing aids in both ears when I have to. I enjoyed watching this with the sound off, knowing exactly what each person would say, and watching their lips and mouth; lip-reading each age. While my lip-reading skills are far from ready for the big time, videos like this, without captioning stealing my attention, are very helpful in my quest to better understand those who are communicating with me.

    1. I’m asking this seriously, but you do know they aren’t speaking in English, correct? I want to confirm just for my own sake you’re lip reading the right language.

  5. It’s interesting that several times a person looks 10 years older than those on either side of them.  I noticed at my high school reunion a few weeks ago that we’re all about 48 years old but some of my classmates looked at least 60.  In some cases I know it was lifestyle choices, in others I don’t know, could be genetics, and it’s not to say that they weren’t healthy but they sure looked old.

  6. I don’t speak Dutch. But all through the video, I keep thinking “the Dutch read numbers from right to left”. One and thirty, two and thirty, three and thirty, … Does that make them better or worse in arithmetic?

    1. In 19th century English, the numbers used to be the wrong way too, similar to Dutch: … Nineteen, twenty, one-and-twenty, two-and-twenty, et cetera. In fact, it does make sense to read the numbers from right to left, because the numbers we all use are Arabic.

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