Synopsis of the film
A local choir from Den Helder called Rainbow standing in the sea sings all fifteen verses of the anthem. The choir has six different nationalities, all historically connected with the Netherlands. The location is called The Hell’s Gate where many sea battles took place in the 17th century.
The film has become a patchwork of cultural interpretations. It’s worked up with scripts from the Bible, the Koran, Arabic philosophers, Dutch poems, words from the anthem and historical images. The music arrangement is a mixture of the original melody and music from the Blaxploitation and the national anthem of Suriname. The editing is inspired by Julie Dash’s Cinematic Jazz; the rhythm of the music is the running thread in the film.
The Wilhelmus project calls in question the so-called Dutch nationality and nationalism. Because, what does it really mean to be a Dutchman?
The fact that one of the choir members voted Geert Wilders a right wing Dutch xenophobic politician, gives the film an extra dimension and the message more power. It is a plea for democracy, justice and above all freedom for everybody. The film also gives a comment on the so- called failing of the Dutch multicultural society.