John Richards

Film & TV Editor

Ouarzazate and the Movie Hotel – The Berbère Palace

by Sep 27, 2014Blog0 comments

BerberePalace-OuarzazateThe town is the home of Film and TV shows the year round and most people stay in the Berbère Palace. It’s full of old props from movies made in the area. As always, they don’t really stand up to close scrutiny. Lumps of polystyrene, shaped and painted to work as a backdrop. Once they are lit and photographed they totally look the part but one touch and you forever know they are fake.

It’s one of the reasons that I try not to visit the set. If it looks the part on the dailies then, just like the audience, I’m convinced it really is a cannon, statue or a castle. Lift it up like superman does and you can never quite get that suspension of disbelief back. Once I’ve done the first assembly of the material shot on the set, is not so bad going to see it. Reality, such that it is, belongs with the images I have seen on the screen. The sets then take on the appearance of replicas of the real world I’ve seen through the window of my screen.

Jaws and Chief BrodyIt’s like visiting Universal Studios and seeing the plastic shark that mechanically jumps out at you, good but not real. Unlike the monster from the deep that went eye to eye with Chief Brody in Jaws, that was real.