Museum De Lakenhal
Published on August 5, 2014
Director’s Statement: Brilliance is a study in light, an exploration of light’s creativity versus darkness’s emphasis on greed and destruction. Light is epitomized in the brooch that Willem designs for Felice, and the ring he makes for Janet / Marlene; both of which reveal the artist in him – two pieces of jewellery that ultimately, with light, overcome the malevolent intentions of those who would take other’s creations, rather than create themselves. The film is a dance as well; a dance of gems into their settings, Janet’s tossing of Marlene’s possessions, Felice’s floating from her grief into the ‘future’ of Willem’s workshop, Josh and Bart’s mis-steps towards their own demise. It is also very much a story about second chances; Willem’s previous wife didn’t appreciate his artistry - and he in turn doesn’t appreciate others, as he’s so isolated in his work. Felice is so desperate for closure with her dead husband that she ignores the fact she actually needs help to survive. Janet is so bent on having things her way she can’t see that Marlene might have some issues. Even the wannabe heisters Josh and Bart are looking for a new chance. But it’s also a film about learning to see – Willem finally sees Felice in a new light, all through the prism of this second chance – the bullet that hits the wrong guy. As a result, light and creativity overcome brutality and greed, through elegance, grace and an openness to happenstance. What I love about the script is the intricacy with which it is interwoven, the delicate clock- work, and its warmth and affection for all the characters. Like a finely designed gem, my intent through performance, camera, editing, design and sound, is to bring out moments of brilliance emerging from the pain of Willem, Janet, Felice, Marlene, and even Bart and Josh. Josh’s tragedy and come-uppance is that he refuses to rise through his pain, but is willing to inflict it on others as a salve for his own wounds. Our tonality is a balance: the playfulness of Vivaldi meeting the gravitas of Beethoven (with a funk undertone), and the whimsy of Dali mixed in with the lightness of Pierre Bonard, the quiet of Vermeer, and a bit of the oddity of Jan Saudek’s photography too. Hopefully, together, we will create our own little gem, its lights gracing the hearts of our viewers with a dash of charm that will make us value our moment at hand just that bit more.