• Film ID:
  • 7804
  • Availability:
  • DVD Available from Shop
  • Film cert:
  • Running time:
  • DVD=89 min.
  • Nationality(ies):
  • Britain.
  • Primary Language(s):
  • English.
"I am dying in time to the splash of their oars - if arms as steady as these had embraced me in life...". This film is Jarman's vision of the life of the Italian painter Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1573 - 1610). Caravaggio revisits periods of his tempestuous life in a series of deathbed flashbacks and prose-poem voice-overs, focusing particularly on the intense relationship between himself and a couple who model for him in Rome, Lena and Ranuccio. This sexual and violent love triangle eventually leads to tragedy for all three characters. Biography, fiction, painting and film are seamlessly entwined in Jarman's celluloid elegy for the great painter. Cinematic chiaroscuro throughout complements and recreates Caravaggio's striking painting style, as does the use of regional accents and contemporary Italian street sounds in the film - Caravaggio was infamous for having drawn his inspiration from the characters who drank, brawled and screwed in the demi-mondes of Naples and Rome.
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