Prospero, a potent magician, lives on a desolate isle with his virginal daughter, Miranda. He's in exile, banished from his duchy by his usurping brother and the King of Naples. Providence ... See full summary »
In this Derek Jarman version of Christopher Marlowe's Elisabethan drama, in modern costumes and settings, Plantagenet king Edward II hands the power-craving nobility the perfect excuse by ... See full summary »
Against a plain, unchanging blue screen, a densely interwoven soundtrack of voices, sound effects and music attempt to convey a portrait of Derek Jarman's experiences with AIDS, both ... See full summary »
A dramatization, in modern theatrical style, of the life and thought of the Viennese-born, Cambridge-educated philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951), whose principal interest was the ... See full summary »
A nearly wordless visual narrative intercuts two main stories and a couple of minor ones. A woman, perhaps the Madonna, brings forth her baby to a crowd of intrusive paparazzi; she tries to... See full summary »
A film with no spoken dialogue, just follows the music and lyrics of Benjamin Britten's "War Requiem, which include WWI soldier poet Wilfred Owen's poems reflecting the war's horrors. It ... See full summary »
Thirteen Smiths' recordings, half of them in a club with a live audience. These alternate with five rock videos, two directed by Derek Jarman (Panic and Ask), two by Tim Broad (Girlfriend ... See full summary »
Prospero, Duke of Milan, usurped and exiled by his own brother, holds sway over an enchanted island. He is comforted by his daughter Miranda and served by his spirit Ariel and his deformed ... See full summary »
Prospero, a potent magician, lives on a desolate isle with his virginal daughter, Miranda. He's in exile, banished from his duchy by his usurping brother and the King of Naples. Providence brings these enemies near; aided by his vassal the spirit Ariel, Prospero conjures a tempest to wreck the Italian ship. The king's son, thinking all others lost, becomes Prospero's prisoner, falling in love with Miranda and she with him. Prospero's brother and the king wander the island, as do a drunken cook and sailor, who conspire with Caliban, Prospero's beastly slave, to murder Prospero. Prospero wants reason to triumph, Ariel wants his freedom, Miranda a husband; the sailors want to dance. Written by
Sadly Unenjoyable and Barely Worth Watching at Best
Derek Jarman has shown us time and time again that dialog is not his strong suit. He is a painter, and paint he does. His films are almost always visually splendid, but about as exciting to watch as paint that is already dry. Watch his movies in fast forward, the really fast setting that you can only get on DVD. In The Tempest, Jarman does very little with the script or the characters, using them as simply a lattice to hang a very long and well-constructed cinematographic frame. He even goes so far as to contradict Shakespeare's original script to achieve these excrucriatingly slow and lifeless scenes. There is none of the romance, magic, trickery, or urgency the script calls for, little spontaneity, and the character of Caliban in particular is reduced to a quivering and insane idiot of sorts, similar to Gaveston in Jarman's Edward II. It is too bad that this is just about the only film version of The Tempest available.
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