A Bang and not a Whimper
The events of today were part public performance, but also for filming scenes for the Exodus film, a modern retelling of the Exodus story. So happy are we to have them choose dear Margate for their project we willed them incredibly fine weather, and we got a chance to watch how television professionals go about their trade. This is both illuminating and confusing, we've no idea of their script, they film scenes out of sequence, and they rush around a lot and then wait seemingly for nothing. It remains fascinating to watch though.
So there's a Gormley sculpture, fake policemen, a pretend news crew and a rowdy on demand crowd waving placards for a right-wing leader who doesn't exist. It's an odd scenario but one which feels quite agreeable in our humble seaside town. We're used to illusion in the name of entertainment so it doesn't feel out of place to have such a modern version of it on the Dreamland site, in fact it's almost nostalgic.
Here we can see Pharaoh supporters cheering, they're not cheering anything in particular rather they've been instructed to do so for the cameras. Their cheers at directed at a space empty of anything bar a camera crew.
Here's Bernard Hill as the Pharaoh, a frightening role made even more worrying by his resemblance to George Galloway. He oozed charisma to the point of seeming to be exactly what he was playing. Oustanding especially as a lot of folk fondly remember him as Yosser Hughes in "Boys from the Blackstuff" way back in the eighties. He's the only professional actor in the cast though, everyone else has been recruited locally.
Until only the RSJs remain, then everyone wanders off to the pub. A bizarre once in a lifetime event widely enjoyed. By far the most engaging large scale arts project we've ever enjoyed here.