British Universities Film & Video Council

moving image and sound, knowledge and access

Jubilee

Synopsis
Independent feature film. A visceral, punk fantasy made in the year of Queen Elizabeth II’s silver jubilee, and solo directorial debut for Derek Jarman. Anxious to gain knowledge, Queen Elizabeth I has her court astrologer (John Dee) conjure up the angel Ariel, who promises to reveal to her ‘the shadow of her time’ and transports the Queen, Dee, and her lady-in-waiting to the England of the future where law and order has been abolished. The spirit, and sometimes the language, of Shakespeare, play their part. John Dee’s monologue in the film’s first scene is a pastiche of Shakespearean verse ‘I cast for Ariel, pearl of fire, my only star. God’s moonbeam send forth my flower.
Language
English
Country
Great Britain
Medium
Film
Technical information
Colour / Sound
Year of release
1978
Duration
104 mins; 9,360 feet

Credits

Director
Derek Jarman
Producer
Howard Malin; James Whaley
Cinematographer
Peter Middleton
Screenplay
Christopher Hobbs; Derek Jarman; James Whaley
Music
Brian Eno
Cast
David HaughtonAriel (Ariel)
Helen Wellington-LloydLady-in-waiting
Jenny RunacreQueen Elizabeth I
Richard O’Brien (2)John Dee

Additional Details

Production type
Fiction Films
Plays
Tempest, The
Keywords
Shakespeare, William (1564-1616); Time Travel

Notes

Notes
The digitally restored (sound and picture) DVD release includes JORDAN’S DANCE (1977), Jarman’s rare short film, shot on super 8, which he re-edited for use in JUBILEE. JUBILEE: A TIME LESS GOLDEN, a 38 min documentary on Jarman and JUBILEE made by Spencer Leigh exclusively for the DVD. Ephemera from Derek Jarman’s personal collection, including costume sketches and continuity stills. Selections from Jarman’s personally annotated screenplay with pasted-in found objects and his pre-production Polaroids and sketches as well as the script. Liner notes by Jarman biographer Tony Peake. Original theatrical trailer.
Reviews
Meek, Scott. Monthly Film Bulletin, April 1978, vol. 45, no. 531, p66. Meek writes ‘No synopsis could adequately convey the wealth of imaginative incident which fills JUBILEE with a textual and thematic richness...by setting the film in the future tense, where the characters inhabit a dark libo between aggressive alienation and anomie, the film successfully reveals questions about the present and goes even further by setting these problems in a framework constructed from the perspective of the past" .

Production Company

Name

Megalovision

Name

Whaley-Malin Productions

Distributor (Sale)

Name

Retail outlets

Record Stats

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