Exercise 1 from St. Margaret’s deserves a post of its own. Headteacher James Siddle has been in the programme for a few years. For Exercise 1 though, he hd to leave the group to go to a meeting, and left them in the care of another teacher, with no film background. The children decided to film a game of ‘wink murder’ as their Lumiere Minute on play; they shot the game a number of times, from different positions, including one with the murderer behind the camera. When they played the sequences back, they chose this one, because it gave the audience a clear view of what was happening.
Whether deliberately chosen or not, the sequence is beautifully compatible with a number of aspects of cinema: film is based often on the ‘interplay of looks’ – those gazes and glances between characters that we draw inferences from. Wink Murder is premissed on the same set of exchanges, making it a very cinematic game.
But more than this, the point of view of the camera encourages the viewer to do more than watch: we become players in the game, actively following the looks between participants. This was the case in Brussels, when even those in the cinema who didn’t know the rules were busy actively interpreting the game: it’s play that we all joined in with.