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The Garden [VHS]

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews


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Product Details

  • Actors: Tilda Swinton, Johnny Mills, Philip MacDonald (II), Pete Lee-Wilson, Spencer Leigh
  • Directors: Derek Jarman
  • Format: Black & White, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Fox Lorber
  • VHS Release Date: November 11, 1997
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6302860636
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #380,196 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

A lyrical, controversial recreation of the story of The Passion, which examines the role of the Church in the persecution of homosexuality.

Customer Reviews

5 star
67%
4 star
0%
3 star
33%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: VHS Tape
"The Garden" is the only (but not last) film I saw by the late gay British director Derek Jarman. I was impressed. Sex and religion, so I've read, seem to be a recurrent theme in Jarman's work. I'm not gonna brag to much about the "daring" portrayal of homosexuality, although this film clearly sought to make a (subtle) statement. To me it was refreshing, sensual, and at some point quite erotic. I myself am not gay, but Jarman's experimental touch poses a unabashed alternative to the recent "gay movies" coming out of Hollywood.
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Format: VHS Tape
This is my favorite Jarman film. I've seen it many times, and it gets more profound every time I see it. This film and The Last of England are Jarman's two greatest films. Jarman weaves his own personal, incredibly lyrical tapestry while shooting in 8mm, 16mm, video, and 35mm, and editing it into an amazing film. The film is essentially the Passion, except Christ is replaced with a gay couple. It is not told in a narrative sense, but in a meaningful, artistic way. It's Jarman's greatest film. Despite the subject matter here, this film (and Jarman's other work) are not strictly for gay audiences. I'm straight, and I really love Derek's work. I believe Jarman to be the most underrated filmmaker in British history. He usually gets identified as "alternative, gay filmmaker", but he's so much more than that. I hope this film will be released on DVD soon.
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Format: VHS Tape
Derek Jarman's "The Garden", made while he was contemplating his own mortality because of AIDS, is a lyrical, haunting, and troubling piece of art. It's eerily prophetic, with its main gay couple depicted both as stand-ins for Jesus, as married, and raising a child. The Madonna (Tilda Swinton) is harassed by the paparazzi, her virgin birth the subject of reality TV... and this art film was made well before Survivor, Big Brother, and The Real World. The dying Judas Iscariot is used to sell credit cards. Mary Magdalene is a drag queen. The film follows Jarman's own Christianized queer spirituality, before such things became mainstream with books like Washed and Waiting: Reflections on Christian Faithfulness and Homosexuality and Gay and Catholic: Accepting My Sexuality, Finding Community, Living My Faith The homophobia the lead gay couple suffers is paralleled with Christ's Passion. At times, the movie seems frustratingly non-linear; scenes are more artistic pieces than forwarding the narrative. Then again, Jarman did Caravaggio (Special Edition) The movie narrates in visual statements. "The Garden" was unusual for the time in depicting gay marriage and gay parenting. At the time, it was more of a fantasy or an ideal than a reality. Jarman tries to grapple with how two men can raise a child- there's an idyllic father&son scene. Tilda Swinton plays Marian, Goddess-like figures. She acts as a maternal figure.

"The Garden" is worth a second look, especially in terms of present realities.
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