The Last of England

Director: Derek Jarman
Year Released: 1988
Rating: 2.0

It's safe to say the late British filmmaker Derek Jarman didn't care much for Margaret Thatcher's policies, as this collection of moody Super 8 footage shows a dirty, rubble-strewn England in pieces and its inhabitants crazed (one man even has sex … with a painting!). The hostility I can understand, but the point becomes clear rather quickly, making the movie a repetitive assemblage of jumpy, flashy, grainy images, and the V.O. a hodgepodge of doom-and-gloom poetic fragments. The film stock lends it a creepy authenticity, but its lack of focus is a real issue - I generally prefer the Jarman pictures where he has to stick to a plot (like his adaptation of Shakespeare's The Tempest).