In 2003 an optimistic start was made on the renovation of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The Netherlands major tourist attraction would re-open its doors in fresh splendour in 2008. But alas...
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In 2003 an optimistic start was made on the renovation of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The Netherlands major tourist attraction would re-open its doors in fresh splendour in 2008. But alas, right from the start the grand project was opposed by unyielding counter-forces and Rembrandt's palace changed into an, apparently permanent building site. To make her unique and prize-wining documentary series, Oeke Hoogendijk filmed behind the closed doors of the museum for ten years. What meant to be a standard length documentary grew into a four-part epic about ambition, love of art and typically Dutch decision-taking processes, and finally 'part four' the historic and emotional 'homecoming' of the masterpieces in the spiny of 2013.Written by
An enthusiastic account in the New York Times led us to travel for more than an hour to see all segments of this fascinating film. Agreement on "complete transparency" from the start (very Dutch) allowed the outstanding team to film all the characters through 8 years of deciding how to renovate a world-class museum and how to present selections from the 1 million works of art they own. You see a great work being restored and transformed on camera, a great director being done in by the cyclists' association, his leaving not to endure more frustration implementing his grand design, the passionate caring of curators for masterpieces, chasing after great acquisitions only to lose one (and acquire another), fatal flaws in who is responsible for what and what are the goals of the renovation, redoing galleries already done, and a final sense of accomplishment, despite all the reversals and compromises. Good subtitles.
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