Caravaggio(1986) is probably the closest Derek Jarman came to a mainstream film. And yet the film is a uniquely complex and lucid treatment of Jarman's major concerns: violence, history, homosexuality, and the relation between film and painting. However, according to Leo Bersani and Ulysse Dutoit, Caravaggio is unlike Jarman's other work in avoiding a lover-boy sentimentalising of gay relationships and in making no neat distinction between the exercise and the suffering of violence.
Film-making involves a coercive power which, for Bersani and Dutoit, Jarman may, without admitting it to himself, have found deeply seductive. But in Caravaggio this power is renounced, and the result is Jarman's most profound, unsettling and astonishing reflection on sexuality and identity.
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aesthetic Angelic Conversation become BFI Modern Classics biography Blue bowed to narrative British Film Institute camera Caravaggio script Caravaggio's paintings Caravaggio's self-portrait Cardinal Del Monte Cardinal Scipione Borghese Catacombs Christ cinema connectedness contemporary Dancing Ledge Davide dead Virgin death Derek Jarman Dexter Fletcher documentary Dutoit earlier Entombment scene erotic fantasmatic film-maker film's final flashback fucked Garden Gaveston Godard's hero heterosexual homophobic homosexual desire homosexual of painters Ibid identity images imagination Jarman gives Jarman saw Jarman writes Jarman's film Jerusaleme John the Baptist Jubilee Kicking the Pricks kiss Last of England Lena Lena's corpse Leo Bersani Lol Coxhill loneliness look lover Martyrdom of St martyred Matthew Michele's head Mortimer move murder of Ranuccio Nigel Terry Pasolini Pasqualone Passion perhaps Pipo Porto Ercole portrait punk Queer Edward Ranuccio posing Ranuccio Thomasoni reading Resnais rhythm Rome saint Sean Bean sequences sexual spectators studio tableau vivant Tilda Swinton victims violence voice-over young