Thursday, December 21, 2017

Museum of the Bible in Washington DC offers many short films on a visit

I finally did my visit to the Museum of the Bible, and there was a variety of short films embedded in the visit.

On the top floor, there was a short “Fly with Us over the Land of the Bible”, which pretty much provided a high drone tour of Israel. When I and my cousin were drawing filmstrips in the spring of 1955 (sixth grade for me then) my “Land of the Bible” won “best educational” at our “academy awards” in a cousin’s house.  This film had almost the same destinations, the real thing.

Then there followed “Follow the Money”, made by the Israeli Antiquities Authority, where a bald young man explained how coins were developed in the ancient world.  Whenever a new king or emperor took over, all the old coins were replaced with new one’s with the king’s image.

After lunch I visited the smaller theater to see “Drive Though History with Dave Stotts: The History of the Bible”, which was similar to the first film above but have even more scenes (wide screen digital, 2.35:1).

On another level there would be a “Galilee” theater story (didn’t see any other title for the film) about Pilate’s giving in to his wife’s sadistic demand to see John the Baptist beheaded, which is how Richard Strauss’s opera “Salome” ends (I saw that in NYC in the 1970s, as well as “Elektra”).  This film was projected on a curved screen 2.35:1.

But the biggest experience was probably “Washington Revelations”, a 4-D film experience similar to other offerings from Disney and Universal in Orlando and from a couple of casino theaters in Las Vegas. A “drone” flies over and through all the major federal buildings in Washington DC and points out all the Biblical references.   This film required an extra $8 charge.

There was also an exhibit covering the Bible in Hollywood film (“The Flight from Egypt” and “Flashdance” get some detailed attention). 

There was brief animated film on Puritanism in the colonies.

There was also a “walkabout” with earphones and special smartphones that played videos about the valley where David and Goliath had their battle (extra $8 charge).
There was a Gettysburg-style cyclorama showing Jerusalem in 360 degrees, with no mention of the controversy today in the UN over Trump’s recent announcement.

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