An immense collection of an ex-slave, Cif Amotan, was put on ship, Apitos (Unbelievable) destined for a new museum to house his collection but the ship sank off the east coast of Africa.
Treasure hunters bring up objects they've found mostly encrusted in coral. On hand are anthropologist who explain, "the dinosaur skeletons became the basis for early myths. They didn't believe in monsters, they believed in cyclops and unicorns.
As viewer, you go, hmmm. Curious.
They bring up a statue of a man with hooves and the anthropologist says, "Human features with bestial traits. Characteristic of the Mesopotamian demon. The question is, could this be the so-called Pazuzu demon?"
That's the demon that opens the movie The Exorcist. She continues, "Stylistically they both seem to be of a piece." (No, they are not stylistically similar. This has musculature in later Greek style and Pazuzu is boxier, clumsier and with two sets of wings.)
As viewer, you go, hmmm.
The Egyptian pieces are outstanding. The unknown pharaoh has African features and that would put him at the first intermediate period and after. All those pharaohs are known. All the Egyptian pieces mix periods of Egypt, the headdress worn by Nefertiti is shown and her singular unusual features are similar to the excavated statue except this one with snakes in places where snakes do not belong in any Egyptian period. Beautiful, but wrong.
Egyptian Bastet cats are actually a bit ugly often with strange human noses and eerie gangly skeletal structure. That's part of what makes them fascinating. This Bastet looks too perfectly cute like an eBay replication.
And as viewer, you go, hmmm. The cat, the faces, the forms are too strikingly attractively modern.
They raise a large gold solar disc that is too excellent, too pure, too undamaged, too unlike anything known in ancient art. The face in the center is not archaic, rather, the face is hauntingly modern and the style is modern. A different anthropologist says, "Sun discs have been used by many civilizations and cultures ... The Egyptians and Incas used them, the Japanese and the Kurds."
And as viewer, you go, "So did American natives. So did all the Mesoamericans. Greeks honored Helios. The followers of Persian Mithraism worshiped fire and the sun. The sun held central position in Sumerian and Akkadian religions although not included among their top three deities. Surya is glorified in the Vedas. Indian Vivasvant corresponds to Iranian Vivahvant. Sun gods and sun kings are worshiped all over the place and throughout time from the beginning of human history, the solar solstice is crucial to early human settlements but none of that necessarily means they believed in the sun as god. Those are stories and myths.
As viewer, you go, hmmm. They're putting a lot of emphasis on belief. They're talking about believing too much.
We have no idea what early people actually believed in their minds and their hearts while we do know what was in their culture, we're familiar with their myths and their stories, their language, and how they arranged their thoughts and speech through available mythologies, but we cannot be certain about what they actually believed nor how deeply they felt them.
The story of Christ would not have got off the ground had ancient people of his day believed deeply what we are told they believed. They didn't deeply believe in much of anything to the point of worship beyond simple superstitions, their real beliefs were faltering or shallow or nothing could come along and dissuaded them off their beliefs to a better more solid religious formulation. At that point in historic time they were spiritually starving and open to better beliefs and improved forms of worship. The Jews at the time had the only real religion around. Everything else was goofball crap.
This transition and these conversions nicely explain why so many Roman soldiers practiced Persian Mithraism and why so much of Mithraism's religious ritual forms carry over to Christian rituals that have nothing to do with the actual teaching of Jesus. They're added to the teaching of Jesus to assist in early conversions. The Roman soldiers needed their rituals or they wouldn't convert.
So listening to these anthropologist citing superficial believing while presuming to discuss ancient beliefs and attributing so much belief to ancients that we cannot honestly know, and leaving out more than they include, while watching the treasure hunters lift things out of the water in ways no archaeologist would dare, and seeing so many objects unaffected by time, while others are heavily affected coated with coral completely, and other objects affected just so, just so artistically graced with coral that it's cute. Coral to object to art, just so artistically that its beautiful, makes the viewer go,
This is fake.
The whole thing is fake.
Beautiful but fake.
And that's why all the discussion about believing.
The producer wants us to believe the unbelievable. They are upfront about that by naming the imaginary boat "Unbelievable."
And that's why we see coral incrusted Micky Mouse. That's why the female forms have Barbie doll dimensions. That's why we see a Star Wars droid. That's why we see coral covered Mowgli and Baloo. That's why we see Damien Hirst's own self-portraits in sculpture and Damien Hurst saying, "Handsome fellow."
You lying bastard, your art is gorgeous but a little too cute.
The documentary is 100% false. *buzzer sound*
Damien Hurst sunk a million dollars into this exhibit and with a French millionaire collaborator fashioned this fantastic fantasy. It really is gorgeous and very well done. You're expected to suspend your disbelief to enjoy it.