An unseen woman recites Shakespeare's sonnets - fourteen in all - as a man wordlessly seeks his heart's desire. The photography is stop-motion, the music is ethereal, the scenery is often ... See full summary »
As a surprise, two horse owners decide to ride their animals themselves in a steeplechase. But Bill Davidson's horse "Admiral" behaves weirdly, and falls hard after an obstacle. Bill dies ... 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 »
Madame Ranevskaya is a spoiled aging aristocratic lady, who returns from a trip to Paris to face the loss of her magnificent Cherry Orchard estate after a default on the mortgage. In denial... See full summary »
A silent avant-garde experience created by Derek Jarman, filled with superimposed images forming a whole picture. His palette consists mostly of reddish random images of Egypt and the ... See full summary »
An unseen woman recites Shakespeare's sonnets - fourteen in all - as a man wordlessly seeks his heart's desire. The photography is stop-motion, the music is ethereal, the scenery is often elemental: boulders and smaller rocks, the sea, smoke or fog, and a garden. The man is on an odyssey following his love. But he must first, as the sonnet says, know what conscience is. So, before he can be united with his love, he must purify himself. He does so, bathing a tattooed figure (an angel, perhaps) and humbling himself in front of this being. He also prepares himself with water and through his journey and his meditations. Finally, he is united with his fair friend. Written by
from "Peter Grimes"
Music by Benjamin Britten
Libretto by Montagu Slater
Performed by the Chorus and Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Conducted by Colin Davis See more »
Derek Jarman is a brilliant filmmaker, and along with Peter Greenaway, probably the most important British filmmaker of the Post WW2 era.
The Angelic Conversation, while a quality work of extraordinary textural richness, isn't Jarman's best. The problem here lies partially in the editing. It's far too aesthetically disjointed and the optical effects seem cheap and reaching. Maybe it's because a million so-called experimental filmmakers have achieved similar results to a much less pointed effect. That kind of copying unfortunately makes this film seem tired, though the soundtrack and script are spectacular.
It is also Jarman's most personal film aside from perhaps, Blue. This is unfortunate, because Jarman has always been most effective when he looks outward. Sebastione, for instance, was a brilliant historical film that literally transports you back in time and The Garden was a scathing political portrait of fin de siecle England under Thatcher. See those before you watch this, but all Jarman is interesting. Coil fans will also appreciate their contribution to this film.
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