Goltzius & The Pelican Company
Dir. Peter Greenaway
UK, Netherlands, France, Croatia 2012 | Colour | 124 mins | Cert 18
Cast: Ramsey Nasr, F. Murray Abraham
‘It is a curiosity that every new visual technology in its infancy seems to gravitate towards erotica and pornography. Is it a flagrant demand for attention, a cynical attempt to attract funding, or a real curiosity to see what that attention-puller of all time – sex – will look like in a new visual language?’
In the winter of 1590, Hendrik Goltzius (Ramsey Nasr), the celebrated Dutch printer, painter and engraver, persuades his patron, the liberal-minded Margrave of Alsace (F. Murray Abraham), to pay for a printing press which will enable him to create an extraordinary de luxe edition of the Old Testament featuring frank illustrations of such erotic tales as the story of Lot and his daughters, the adultery of David and Bathsheba, and the seduction of Joseph by Potiphar’s Wife. In order to make the deal more attractive to the Margrave and his court, Goltzius, along with the male and female members of his Pelican Printing Company, offers to stage live dramatisations of six biblical tales, each of which will demonstrate a different sexual taboo …
True to form, the latest work of Peter Greenaway, recently awarded the 2014 BAFTA for Outstanding Contribution to British Cinema, is almost certainly destined to delight, disturb and divide audiences.
Available on: DCP, DVD
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