IMDb > Caravaggio (1986)
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Caravaggio (1986) More at IMDbPro »

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Up 53% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Derek Jarman (screenplay) and
Nicholas Ward Jackson (from an original idea by)
View company contact information for Caravaggio on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 August 1986 (USA) See more »
A retelling of the life of the celebrated 17th-century painter through his brilliant, nearly blasphemous paintings and his flirtations with the underworld. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
3 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Beautiful to look at, but lacking a third dimension See more (22 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Nigel Terry ... Caravaggio

Sean Bean ... Ranuccio

Garry Cooper ... Davide

Dexter Fletcher ... Young Caravaggio
Spencer Leigh ... Jerusaleme

Tilda Swinton ... Lena

Nigel Davenport ... Giustiniani

Robbie Coltrane ... Scipione Borghese

Michael Gough ... Cardinal Del Monte
Noam Almaz ... Boy Caravaggio
Dawn Archibald ... Pipo
Jack Birkett ... The Pope
Una Brandon-Jones ... Weeping Woman
Imogen Claire ... Lady with the Jewels
Sadie Corre ... Princess Collona
Lol Coxhill ... Old Priest

Vernon Dobtcheff ... Art Lover
Terry Downes ... Bodyguard

Jonathan Hyde ... Baglione
Emile Nicolaou ... Young Jerusaleme
Gene October ... Model Peeling Fruit
Cindy Oswin ... Lady Elizabeth
John Rogan ... Vatican Official
Zohra Segal ... Jerusaleme's Grandmother (as Zohra Sehgal)
Lucien Taylor ... Boy with Guitar
Simon Fisher-Turner ... Fra Fillipo (as Simon Turner)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kevin Hull ... Roman in Toga (uncredited)
Derek Jarman ... Papal Aide (uncredited)
Chelita Secunda ... (uncredited)
Cerith Wyn Evans ... Altar Boy (uncredited)

Directed by
Derek Jarman 
Writing credits
Derek Jarman  screenplay and
Nicholas Ward Jackson  from an original idea by (as Nicholas Ward-Jackson)

Suso Cecchi D'Amico (collaboration) uncredited

Produced by
Nicholas Ward Jackson .... associate producer (as Nicholas Ward-Jackson)
Colin MacCabe .... executive producer
James Mackay .... development producer
Sarah Radclyffe .... producer
Original Music by
Simon Fisher-Turner 
Cinematography by
Gabriel Beristain 
Film Editing by
George Akers 
Casting by
Debbie McWilliams 
Production Design by
Christopher Hobbs 
Art Direction by
Michael Buchanan  (as Mike Buchanan)
Costume Design by
Sandy Powell 
Makeup Department
Miri Ben-Schlomo .... assistant makeup artist (as Miri Ben-Shlomo)
Morag Ross .... makeup artist
Production Management
Jules Bradbury .... production assistant
Jill Pack .... executive in charge of production
Sarah Wilson .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Pat Aldersley .... third assistant director (as Patricia Aldersley)
Simon Moseley .... second assistant director (as Simon Mosley)
Glynn Purcell .... first assistant director
Art Department
Alastair Gow .... constructions
Christopher Hobbs .... painter
Josh Jones .... runner
Annie La Paz .... scenic artist
Penny McDonald .... scene painter (as Penny Beard)
Charlie McGrigor .... runner
Susan McLenachan .... constructions
Lucy Morahan .... scenic artist
Marc Russo .... stagehand
Robin Thistlewaite .... constructions (as Robin Thistlethwaite)
Tim Youngman .... property master
Sound Department
Peter Maxwell .... dubbing mixer
Billy McCarthy .... sound recordist
Beryl Mortimer .... footsteps
June Prinz .... sound department trainee
George Richards .... boom swinger
Ted Swanscott .... footsteps
Budge Tremlett .... dubbing editor (as 'Budge' Tremlett)
Steve Hancock .... sound camera operator (uncredited)
Jim Dowdall .... stunt coordinator
Tracey Eddon .... stunt performer
Gareth Milne .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Noel Balbirnie .... focus puller
Mike Barker .... camera department trainee
Phil Bough .... assistant camera: second camera
Mickey Donovan .... sparks
Tony Hair .... sparks (as Tony Hare)
Tony Haughey .... grip
Mike Laye .... still photographer
John Mathieson .... clapper
John Mathieson .... loader
Larry S. Prinz .... gaffer (as Larry Prinz)
Steve Tickner .... camera operator: second camera
Casting Department
Simon Fisher-Turner .... extras casting (as Simon Turner)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Penny McDonald .... textile artist (as Penny Beard)
Karen Sherwin .... wardrobe department: runner
Annie Symons .... wardrobe supervisor
Editorial Department
Alastair Bates .... assistant editor
Nicola Black .... assistant editor
Anuree De Silva .... assistant editor
Matthew Whiteman .... assistant editor
Music Department
Bill Badley .... musician
Steart Butterfield .... musician
Lol Coxhill .... musician
John Douglas-Williams .... singer
Charlie Duncan .... musician
Charles Gibbs .... singer
Brian Gulland .... musician
Stuart Hall .... musician
Julia Hodgson .... musician
Timothy Hugh .... musician
Neil Kelly .... musician
Chi-Chi Nwanoku .... musician
Mary Phillips .... music assistant
Mary Phillips .... singer
Jocelyn Pook .... musician
Richard Preston .... music engineer
Nicolas Robertson .... singer
Rodney Skeaping .... musician
Angus Smith .... singer
El Tito .... musician
Veryan Weston .... musician
Other crew
Patricia Bemrose .... floor runner
Sheryl Leonardo .... production accountant
Yvonne Little .... runner
Stephen Masters .... titles designer
Heather Storr .... continuity
Paul Treacy .... consultant: deaf and dumb teacher
Simon Wallace .... runner
Michael Barnett .... special thanks
Stephen Brown .... special thanks
Ken Butler .... special thanks
Michael Carter .... special thanks
Suso Cecchi D'Amico .... special thanks
Andy Chapman .... special thanks
David Cooper .... special thanks
Simon Costin .... special thanks
Tony Covell .... special thanks
Bill Craster .... special thanks
Daniel .... special thanks
Martin Duncan .... special thanks
Leslie Eyles .... many thanks
Michael Fowkes .... special thanks
Frances .... special thanks
Frankie .... special thanks
Behroze Gandhi .... many thanks
Susie Giblin .... special thanks
Gloria .... special thanks
Matthew Hamilton .... special thanks
Shirley Hobart .... special thanks
Jennifer Howarth .... many thanks
Rory Keegan .... special thanks
Willy Landels .... special thanks
Len .... special thanks
Patricia Lester .... special thanks
Stephen Lewis .... special thanks
Maria Liljefors .... special thanks
Atilio Lopez .... special thanks
Nigel Lowry .... special thanks
Phil MacDonald .... special thanks
William Maley .... many thanks (as Willy Maley)
Mr. Marinelli .... special thanks
Margareth Matheson .... special thanks
Penny McDonald .... special thanks (as Penny Beard)
Eliza Mellor .... many thanks
Paul Minter .... special thanks
Niako .... special thanks
Claudia Nicolaou .... special thanks
John O'Keefe .... special thanks
Kevin O'Shea .... special thanks
Chris Palmer .... special thanks
Jill Parker .... special thanks
Cath Pater-Lantucki .... special thanks
Ron Payne .... special thanks
Dominic Penrose .... special thanks
Steven Pickes .... special thanks
Andy Powell .... many thanks
Liz Reddish .... many thanks
Paul Reynolds .... special thanks
Nobby Rocker .... special thanks
Peter Sainsbury .... special thanks
Sarah Sankey .... special thanks
Antonia Savvides .... special thanks
Panayota Savvides .... special thanks
Belinda Scarlett .... special thanks
Aileen Seaton .... special thanks
Ian Shipley .... special thanks (as Ian Shipley Books)
Nikos Sozou .... special thanks
Les Spring .... special thanks
Kuko Steiner .... special thanks
Cob Stenham .... special thanks
Bob Storer .... special thanks
Sally Sutton .... special thanks
Paul Treacy .... special thanks
Sarah Walsh .... special thanks
Andy Wilson .... special thanks
Ben Wilson .... special thanks
Tina Winters .... special thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
93 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Michael Gough was fourth choice for the role of Del Monte.See more »
Incorrectly regarded as goofs: A typewriter is used, a saxophone is played, a train and steamship hooter are heard. In addition one of the characters plays with a (very advanced for the time of the movie) credit card-sized calculator with beeping buttons. These items are included deliberately as a stylistic decision of the filmmakers, not "goofs" of people unaware of the absence of these items in the 1500s and 1600s.See more »
Young Caravaggio:The price of the painting is my knife.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in "QI: Adam (#1.1)" (2003)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
20 out of 23 people found the following review useful.
Beautiful to look at, but lacking a third dimension, 23 February 2008
Author: bob54 from United Kingdom

What we know of Caravaggio suggests a strutting brawler with a healthy sense of entitlement who lived amongst whores and thieves and hustlers and put them on canvas. His works' themes were sex, death, redemption, above all, finding the sacred within the profane. He lived at a time where homosexuality carried a death sentence and political intrigue normally involved fatalities in a society defined by the maxim "strangling the boy for the purity of his scream".

You can't fault Derek Jarman for his cinematography, nor his recreations of Caravaggio's paintings and you certainly can't accuse the man of shying away from the homosexuality. But frankly, Jarman never strays beyond 80s caricature. Italian patronage becomes the 80s London art scene complete with pretty waiters and calculators. Sean Bean is a sexy bit of Northern rough oiling his motorbike. Tilda Swinton performs a transformation worthy of a Mills and Boons ("Why, Miss Lena, without that gypsy headscarf, you're beautiful..."). Jarman provides Caravaggio with a particularly trite motive for the murder which left him exiled.

This could have been a visually stunning treatment of a man whose life was dangerous, exciting, violent and decadent but who nonetheless elevated the lives of ordinary people to the status of Renaissance masterpieces, looked on by Emperors and Kings. Instead, what you get is Pierre et Gilles do Italy. The pretty bodies of young boys are shown to perfection, but never the men who inhabit them. Jarman appears to satirise the London art scene, showing it shallow and pretentious. To use Caravaggio and Renaissance Italy to make the point is to use a silk purse to make a pig's ear. In fairness, this film remains visually stunning, but ultimately as two dimensional as the paintings it describes.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Caravaggio (1986)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Typewriter?? jennoua_1984
the contortionist actress, who is she? byllyrs
It was kinda difficult to me hsspg
is this out on dvd? teejay6682
Script estheleda
Soundtrack? akaffircat
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