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Wittgenstein (1993) More at IMDbPro »

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Derek Jarman (written by) and
Terry Eagleton (written by) ...
View company contact information for Wittgenstein on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
17 September 1993 (USA) See more »
A dramatization, in modern theatrical style, of the life and thought of the Viennese-born, Cambridge-educated... See more » | Add synopsis »
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(7 articles)
Jodorowsky launches Kickstarter for Endless Poetry
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User Reviews:
Missed the Interesting Part See more (10 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Karl Johnson ... Ludwig Wittgenstein

Michael Gough ... Bertrand Russell

Tilda Swinton ... Lady Ottoline Morrell
John Quentin ... John Maynard Keynes
Kevin Collins ... Johnny
Clancy Chassay ... Young Ludwig Wittgenstein
Nabil Shaban ... Martian
Sally Dexter ... Hermine Wittgenstein
Lynn Seymour ... Lydia Lopokova
Donald McInnes ... Hairdresser

Jill Balcon ... Leopoldine Wittgenstein
Gina Marsh ... Gretyl Wittgenstein
Vanya Del Borgo ... Helene Wittgenstein (as Vania Del Borgo)
Ben Scantlebury ... Hans Wittgenstein
Howard Sooley ... Kurt Wittgenstein
David Radzinowicz ... Rudolf Wittgenstein
Jan Latham-Koenig ... Paul Wittgenstein
Tony Peake ... Tutor
Michelle Wade ... Tutor
Tanya Wade ... Tutor
Roger Cook ... Tutor
Anna Campeau ... Tutor
Mike O'Pray ... Tutor
Hussein McGraw ... Prisoner
Christopher Hughes ... Prisoner (as Chris Hughes)
Budge Tremlett ... Prisoner
Aisling Magill ... Schoolgirl
Perry Kadir ... Artist's Model
Ashley Russell ... Student
Stuart Bennett ... Student
David Mansell ... Student
Steven Downes ... Student
Peter Fillingham ... Student
Fayez Samara ... Student
Samantha Cones ... Cyclist
Kate Temple ... Cyclist
Sarah Graham ... Cyclist
Layla Alexander Garrett ... Sophia Janovskaya

Directed by
Derek Jarman 
Writing credits
Derek Jarman (written by) and
Terry Eagleton (written by) and
Ken Butler (written by)

Produced by
Tariq Ali .... producer
Takashi Asai .... executive producer: Uplink
Ben Gibson .... executive producer: BFI
Film Editing by
Budge Tremlett 
Art Direction by
Annie La Paz 
Costume Design by
Sandy Powell 
Makeup Department
Miri Ben-Schlomo .... assistant hair stylist (as Miri Ben-Shlomo)
Miri Ben-Schlomo .... assistant makeup artist (as Miri Ben-Shlomo)
Morag Ross .... key hair stylist
Morag Ross .... key makeup artist
Production Management
Anna Campeau .... production manager
Gina Marsh .... production manager
Eliza Mellor .... executive in charge of production: BFI
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ken Butler .... associate director
Richard Hewitt .... second assistant director
Davina Nicholson .... first assistant director
Art Department
Mandy Barnes .... art department assistant
Peter Fillingham .... art department assistant
Karl Lydon .... art department assistant
Madeleine Morris .... art department assistant
Ruth Naylor .... art department assistant
Melanie Oliver .... art department standby
Matthew Parsons .... scenic artist
Kevin Rowe .... art department standby
Kate Stubbs .... property buyer
Jonathan Wells .... carpenter
David Williams .... carpenter
Sound Department
Orin Beaton .... boom operator
Toby Calder .... sound editor
Paul Carr .... dubbing mixer
George Richards .... sound recordist
Camera and Electrical Department
Denzil Armour-Brown .... focus puller
John Donne .... grip (as Johnny Donne)
Debbie Kaplan .... clapper loader
Araf Khan .... second camera assistant
Drew Meldon .... rigger
Howard Sooley .... still photographer
John Turley .... gaffer
Cephus Vazquez-Howard .... best boy
James Welland .... lighting camera
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Penny McDonald .... wardrobe supervisor (as Penny Beard)
Michael Weldon .... wardrobe assistant
Music Department
Paul Barrett .... musician: violin
Judith Hall .... musician: flute
André Jacquemin .... music mixer (as Andre Jacquemin)
Jan Latham-Koenig .... musical director
Jan Latham-Koenig .... musician: piano
Other crew
Gordon Baskerville .... production assistant
Emily Caston .... unit runner
Ademola Falola .... caterer
Polly Hope .... production secretary
Sky Macaskill .... stand-in
Stephen Masters .... titles (as Steve Masters)
Pearl Morrison .... script supervisor
Trevor Williams .... unit runner
David Roden .... researcher (uncredited)
Karen Brown .... special thanks
John Krausa .... special thanks
Colin MacCabe .... special thanks
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
72 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Movie Connections:
Featured in Derek Jarman: Life as Art (2004)See more »
Rondo in A Minor, K.511See more »


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46 out of 72 people found the following review useful.
Missed the Interesting Part, 29 July 2000
Author: tedg ( from Virginia Beach

I was marching through comprehensive viewing of the Greenaway section in our local art video store, and got into an argument with the proprietor. He felt that Greenaway was excessive pretentious and juvenile and suggested this film as `real' intelligent filmmaking. I really wanted to discover a new director, so watched with expectation.

About the actual art of the filmmaking, I can report that this to be completely mundane. The technique is of stationary filming of a staged play with no risk and little imagination.

But the topic has real promise! Wittgenstein is among the dozen most fascinating men of ideas who ever lived. He anticipated the core ideas about logic and language that are commonplace today. But he was profoundly not influential. All these ideas were reinvented by independent means because his explications were so abstruse. I believe them to be necessarily so, and we still don't appreciate the full ambiguities he noted.

This is grand, fascinating stuff, but in this play we get the most trivial inklings of his middle period. How sad.

Independent of the ideas, his life is remarkable. He was rich and gave it away. He absolutely mastered a strain of philosophical thought and was universally celebrated (though not understood). He tossed it away, disclaiming all his ideas and starting over as his own most powerful detractor. And he did this thrice! He went from the protection of the university to hovels and degradation multiple times. Along the way he designed one of the most puzzling houses on the planet. This is great, great stuff.

But this film is motivated by a politico-sexual agenda, so while watering down the great intellectual and physical swings, ascribes them to repressed guilt of his sexuality. Wittgenstein would be appalled, I think, to have his great projects and discipline so debased. In fact, he seemed to have repressed guilt about everything he could conceive, and among these homosexuality was a lesser driver because the environment was so accepting, even encouraging. Alan Turing of the next generation, is a different, more apt story.

The report then is that this is not cinematically interesting, and some great drama has been missed in order to make a minor -- and perhaps untrue -- point.

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