In this Derek Jarman version of Christopher Marlowe's Elizabethan drama, in modern costumes and settings, Plantagenet king Edward II hands the power-craving nobility the perfect excuse by ... 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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
Queen Elisabeth I travels 400 years into the future to witness the appalling revelation of a dystopian London overrun by corruption and a vicious gang of punk guerrilla girls led by the new Monarch of Punk.
Fictionalized biopic of famed 17th century Italian painter Michelangelo Merisi de Caravaggio. As a young man, he gained the support of Cardinal Del Monte and Caravaggio proceeded to develop a new style of painting giving a more realistic view of the world in which he lived. He also begins love affairs with one of his models, Ranuccio as well as with Ranuccio's girlfriend Lena. Their relationship leads to murder and deceit. Written by
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 »
Michelangelo Caravaggio was an important Italian painter who led a short, tumultuous life. He surrounded himself with earthy street people who became the models for his paintings.
If you're looking for a biopic about the life of Caravaggio, look elsewhere. This chaotic and bizarre interpretation of his life by avant-garde director Derek Jarman is like seeing art history on a bad acid trip. The story opens well enough around the year 1600, and I thought I was seeing things the first time I saw someone in a 20th century tuxedo. I scratched my head at the calculator, but the motorbike and truck were too much. The use of anachronistic images and odd sound effects (trains, crashing ocean waves) was too jarring and distracting for me. There is little dialogue and the narration was incomprehensible. As a fan of Caravaggio's work, I did enjoy the scenes that showed models posing for his famous paintings, but the rest - a montage of unrelated scenes showing his depraved lifestyle - was just distasteful and speculative. I learned nothing of the man and more about the director.
Tilda Swinton made a memorable screen debut in the puzzling role of a young street woman and a very young Sean Bean is interesting as her companion, but Nigel Terry was a confusing and off-putting Caravaggio. Not recommended.
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