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...
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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 »
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 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 »
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.
Shortly before the WW II, Ella Gericke takes on the identity of her husband Max after his death to work instead of him in the factory. She continues to be Max until she herself doesn't even... 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 flee them. Two men who are lovers marry and are arrested by the powers that be. The men are mocked and pilloried, tarred, feathered, and beaten. Loose in this contemporary world of electrical-power transmission lines is also Jesus. The elements, particularly fire and water, content with political power, which is intolerant and murderous. Written by
One gets the impression that other reviewers on IMDb have never seen or appreciated Jarman's other films, or any art film for that matter. This isn't for the intellectually inert. One also wonders whether they've taken the time to watch this one more than once -- its conflicted and dense, drawing on mutually contradictory sources for its symbolism, and attempting a synthesis or nexus.
The main themes are religion, love, oppression, family, and above all, time. Events and elements from every era of recorded human history co-exist together in one time and interact. While much of the film itself is done in the anxious, unsteady, rapid-moving style that Jarman came to be known for, other parts are filmed with graceful panoramic transitions. Throughout all the film, landscapes are replaced with artificial projections, perhaps to give the film an aura of unreality or allegory. It is at once both scripture and pornography, philosophy and nonsense, a gloomy warning and a hopeful swansong. I believe it to be one of Jarman's most un-acknowledged films. Don't let the harsh words of bad reviewers sway you against spending an evening absorbing this film -- its mesmerizing.
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