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Derby QUAD: Derby Film Festival/Paracinema – Jubilee

April 15th, 2018

dffjubilee18aWhen Queen Elizabeth I (Jenny Runacre) asks her court alchemist John Dee (Richard O’Brien) to show her the future of England she is transported forward 400 years to 1978. She arrives to discover a post-apocalyptic society on the brink of collapse where girl gangs rove the streets indulging in casual murder, the police are openly fascistic, and public opinion is manipulated by all-powerful media moguls.

Forty years on from its first release Derek Jarman’s Jubilee remains the quintessential punk film, a daring and unique vision, featuring many icons of the punk era including festival guest Toyah Willcox, Little Nell, Wayne Country, Jordan, Adam Ant and many more.

You can attend the May 5th 7pm screening of Jubilee for free if purchasing a ticket for Toyah Willcox In Conversation at 5pm the same day. Call the box office on 01332 290606 to claim this offer.

• Continue reading at Derby QUAD. View the full programme at the Derby Film Festival website. Full info on/Book tickets for Toyah Willcox in Conversation taking place on Saturday 5th May at DFF.

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Derby Film Festival: Programme: The Tempest/Jubilee

April 13th, 2018

derbyff18aFollowing the news that Toyah will be a guest at the Derby Film Festival 2018 on Saturday 5th May – talking about her career in film and on screen - as part of Paracinema, the full programme of films and events has been announced, with Jubilee and The Tempest showing a number of times during the 10 day film fest.

Jubilee (15): UK, 1978: 106m. Dir: Derek Jarman
Saturday 5th May: 7pm, Tuesday 8th May: 12.10pm/8.35pm, Wednesday 9th May: 2.15pm/8.45pm

When Queen Elizabeth I (Jenny Runacre) asks her court alchemist John Dee (Richard O’Brien) to show her the future of England she is transported forward 400 years to 1978. She arrives to discover a post-apocalyptic society on the brink of collapse where girl gangs rove the streets indulging in casual murder, the police are derbyff18bopenly fascistic, and public opinion is manipulated by all-powerful media moguls. Forty years on from its first release Derek Jarman’s Jubilee remains the quintessential punk film, a daring and unique vision, featuring many icons of the punk era including festival guest Toyah Willcox, Little Nell, Wayne Country, Jordan, Adam Ant and many more.

The Tempest (15): UK, 1979: 91m. Dir: Derek Jarman
Wednesday 9th May: 12pm/6pm, Thursday 10th May: 1.30pm/8.45pm

Jarman brings sumptuous visual style and a measure of the punk spirit that informed Jubilee to this cinematic version of the Shakespeare text. Festival guest Toyah Willcox plays Miranda, who has been banished to a desolate island with her father Prospero (Heathcote Williams) by Alonso, King of Naples (Peter Bull). Prospero’s plans for revenge are complicated when Miranda falls in love with the king’s son Ferdinand (David Meyer). If you discount the very loose sci-fi adaptation Forbidden Planet this was the big screen’s first version of the play.

• View the full programme at the Derby Film Festival website. Full info on/Book tickets for Toyah Willcox in Conversation.

Happy 40th!: Jubilee

March 29th, 2018

Jubilee was on release in cinemas this week & month forty years ago in 1978 after premiering in London on 28 February. (Image © Official Toyah)

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Jubilee: 40th Anniversary Edition (DVD & Blu-Ray)

February 15th, 2018

jubilee18cJubilee celebrates its 40th with a DVD & Blu-ray Anniversary Edition of Derek Jarman’s cult classic. The 2-disc set will be released on 18th June 2018.

The mythological past and bleak future converge on the sparse, grey streets of London in this cult classic of the punk era.

Queen Elizabeth 1 and her occult aide Dr John Dee (brilliantly played by Jenny Runacre and Richard O’Brien, respectively) travel into the future, encountering the megalomania of big business as well as gangs of violent, marauding killers.  Director Derek Jarman doesn’t spare the shocks while electrifying punk rock numbers are delivered by Jayne County and Adam Ant

Newly available as a Dual Format Edition for the very first time, the film is a 2K remaster from the original camera negatives, and comes bolstered by an extensive array of extras.

Special Features:
• Presented in High Definition and Standard Definition
• A Message from the Temple (1981, 5 mins)
• Toyah Willcox: Being Mad (2014, 8 mins): The singer and actress looks back on her role in Jubilee
• Jordan remembers Jubilee (2018): Punk icon Jordan looks back on her friendship with Derek Jarman and the making of Jubilee
• Lee Drysdale remembers Jubilee (2018): Derek Jarman’s friend and, later collaborator Lee Drysdale recalls his unconventional involvement in the making of Jubilee
• Jubilee image gallery
• Fully illustrated booklet with writing on the film by Will Fowler, an original review and full film credits

1978 | colour | 106 minutes | 1 x BD50, Region B | 1 x DVD9, Region 2 | Cert 18

• Further info/Pre-order at Amazon.

Categories: Blu-ray, DVD, Films, Jubilee, Releases Tags:

Derek Jarman Volume One: 1972-1986: 5 Disc Blu-Ray

February 9th, 2018

jarmanbs18bThe BFI have announced details of a long-awaited collection of the films of Derek Jarman, to be released on Blu-Ray this spring. Jarman Volume One: 1972-1986 will be a limited-edition, five disc box set, available from 26th March 2018 – more info/pre-order at Amazon.

Derek Jarman Volume One: 1972-1986
5-disc Limited Edition Blu-ray box set

Jarman’s multi-faceted work is inspirational in its fearlessness, yet remains touchingly personal. The dynamism of these features evokes comparison with the bold romanticism of directors like Ken Russell (an early champion) and Michael Powell, as well as artists Paul Nash and John Piper. But Jarman was also a subversive force in film. Beginning with his psychedelic debut feature, In the Shadow of the Sun (1972-1974), then came the provocative Jubilee (1978), the evocative Shakespeare adaptation The Tempest (1979) and The Angelic Conversation (1985), in which he invoked Elizabethan occultist Dr John Dee and explored alchemical imagery, a subject in which he was well versed. In Sebastiane (1976) and Caravaggio (1986) he revived key gay and homo-erotic figures from the past with edgy and unmistakable style.

Derek Jarman’s first six feature films have all been newly scanned at 2K from original film elements and are presented in this lavish box set alongside an exciting array of new and archival extras drawn from Jarman’s archive of workbooks and papers held in BFI Special Collections. Newly interviewed exclusively for this box set are some of the people who worked on these films; punk legend Jordan, producer and filmmaker Don Boyd, production designer Christopher Hobbs and artist filmmaker John Scarlett-Davis.

Special Features

• All films presented in High Definition for the first time in the UK
• Sebastiane: A Work in Progress (c.1975): newly remastered from 16mm film elements held by the BFI National Archive, this sadly incomplete early black and white work-print of Sebastiane differs significantly from the finished film. This previously unseen alternate edit assembled in a different order, featuring a different soundtrack was never subtitled or released
• The Making of Sebastiane (Derek Jarman & Hugh Smith, 1975): previously unseen Super 8 footage shot on location in Sardiniai
• Jazz Calendar (1968): a rarely screened documentary record of the 1968 ballet by Frederick Ashton, performed by The Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House, for which Jarman designed sets and costumes
• Message from the Temple (1981)
• TG: Psychic Rally in Heaven (1981)
• Pirate Tape (WS Burroughs Film) (1982)
• Toyah Willcox: Being Mad (2014); the singer and actress looks back on her role in Jubilee
• Jordan remembers Jubilee (2018): punk icon Jordan looks back on her friendship with Derek Jarman and the making of Jubilee
• Stormy Weather: The Magic Behind The Tempest (2016): Toyah Willcox and Stuart Hopps share their memories of working on Derek Jarman’s 1979 production of The Tempest
• Don Boyd remembers The Tempest (2018): Producer and filmmaker Don Boyd remembers the production, release and critical reception of The Tempest
• A Meeting of Minds: Christopher Hobbs on collaborating with Derek Jarman (2018): production designer Christopher Hobbs looks back on his long and fruitfully creative friendship with Derek Jarman
• Fully illustrated 80-page book with new writing on the film, contemporary reviews and full film credits
• …plus lots more

The Quietus: Derek Jarman’s Jubilee Turns 40

February 9th, 2018

jubilee12cGrieve The Capital: Derek Jarman’s Jubilee Turns 40

Derek Jarman’s film of visionary alchemy and edgeland punks now tells of a time before the gentrification of the capital when occulture and subculture sat side-by-side, says Adam Scovell

Released in Elizabeth II’s silver jubilee year of 1978 as a provocation seemingly towards just about everyone, it’s little wonder Derek Jarman’s second feature film, Jubilee, caused such an uproar. The Queen herself is mugged and killed for her crown early on in a Deptford edgeland, the punk movement still then raging over London is unconsciously sent up by some of the very people who were part of it, and the raw mixture of violence, conservative nostalgia, swipes at Catholicism and copious nudity makes it as anarchic as anything the director made afterwards.

Amongst this incredibly heady concoction of both successful and failed attempts at creating a feasible narrative world, however, sits something far more essential; a time-capsule of a period in London’s history when subcultures grew overtly and naturally due to the city’s many affordable, derelict areas.

The film begins with Elizabeth I (Jenny Runacre) and her alchemist, Dr. John Dee (Richard O’Brien), who conjures forth Ariel (David Brandon), William Shakespeare’s magical being from The Tempest. Thanks to Ariel’s powers imbued into a crystal, the trio travel forward through the cascading years, from the sixteenth-century to a brutal, dystopian vision of 1970s London. The city is ravaged but alive, the streets housing violent groups of punk girl-gangs who fend off police harassment and cause mayhem. Prams are burning and people are killed whilst bands, including Adam And The Ants and Siouxsie And The Banshees, play endlessly on television. Ritual violence is spreading as is this new form of music, ready to be co-opted by financial maniacs to sell to a brainwashed youth; providing further wealth to buy up the newly empty Buckingham Palace and turn it into a recording studio. The film is perhaps more famous for its string of cameos: Adam Ant, The Slits smashing up a car, Toyah Willcox playing Mad and too many others to name. But it’s more than the sum of its pop-culture reference points.

• Continue reading at The Quietus.

Toyah on TV: Jubilee

January 26th, 2018

Jubilee: London Live: Monday 29th January: 2.30am
Jubilee: London Live: Wednesday 31st January: 2am
Queen Elizabeth I travels through time from 1578 to 1978, where she sees what has become of her once glorious kingdom: law and order have broken down and punks roam the streets. Director: Derek Jarman. Starring: Jenny Runacre,  Nell Campbell, Toyah Willcox, Hermine Demoriane, Ian Charleson, Karl Johnson.

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NB: London Live is available on: Freeview 8, Sky 117, Virgin 159, YouView 8.

Categories: Films, Jubilee, TV/Radio 2018 Tags:

Shakespeare Magazine: Toyah as Miranda/QEI

November 28th, 2017

She was Miranda in Derek Jarman’s 1979 film of Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Today, Toyah is Queen Elizabeth I in a stage version of Jarman’s Jubilee. (She was also in the original 1978 film)

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Categories: Films, Jubilee, Press Clips, The Tempest, Twitter Tags:

Exeunt Magazine: Review: Jubilee at Royal Exchange, Manchester

November 18th, 2017

exeunt17aNo future: Catherine Love reviews Chris Goode’s furiously intelligent take on the punk movie classic.

Punk is dead. Long live punk.

When director Derek Jarman released Jubilee in 1978, punk had already scaled its zenith and was starting to tumble down the other side. The Sex Pistols had just split. The controversy of ‘God Save The Queen’ had come and gone. Thatcher was lurking just beyond the horizon.

Chris Goode’s version – more of a playful wrestle with Jarman’s film than an adaptation of it – asks what punk means now, four decades after it had its moment. By the time I was aware of punk in the late 90s, it was already nostalgia. Now, in 2017, it’s distant yet present. It’s Johnny Rotten in butter adverts. It’s mohawks and safety pins at fancy dress parties. It’s the Sex Pistols on the radio.

Jarman’s film suggested that everyone would sell out in the end, and punk proved him right. That abandoning of revolutionary stances and evacuating of radical gestures is worried away at throughout Goode’s reimagining. His Jubilee is firmly located in the now – the year of Queen Elizabeth II’s uranium jubilee, according to protagonist Amyl Nitrite (queer performance artist Travis Alabanza) – and picks at contemporary scabs. Is there still any sort of resistance in nihilism at a time when the film’s defiant cry of “no future” feels more and more like a simple statement of truth?

• Continue reading at Exeunt Magazine.

Louder Than War: Jubilee: Manchester, Royal Exchange – Review

November 18th, 2017

louderthanwar17aJubilee, originally a film by Derek Jarman released in 1978 is updated for the 21st century at The Royal Exchange, Manchester. Nigel Carr reports back for Louder Than War.

Denounced by Vivienne Westwood at the time of its original release in 1978 as failing to represent punk, Derek Jarman’s Jubilee was a social statement on the breakdown of modern society. Anarchy ruled, policemen got firebombed and Queen Elizabeth, transported from the sixteenth century by the occultist John Dee, surveyed a decaying dystopian, modern Britain.

Fast forward forty years and ‘nothing has changed’, ‘nothing has worked’. Gloriously narrated by Travis Alabanza’s Amyl Nitrate, the themes are brought bang up to date in a dense, visceral allegory of a still decaying Britain with references as disparate as Brexit, Grenfell – ‘Tower blocks are built to kill the poor’ and ‘Isis, Isis Isis!’

• Continue reading at Louder Than War.

Northern Soul: Review: Jubilee, Royal Exchange, Manchester

November 18th, 2017

northernsoul17aThe 1978 punk film Jubilee set out to shock with violence, nudity and strong language. Nearly 40 years later, the 2017 play features more of the same but shocks for a different reason.

Why is this? Well, thanks in no small part to social media, we’ve become immune. Numb to almost all of it. Punk’s original prophecies have been realised.

At Manchester’s Royal Exchange, ideas, beliefs and concepts are chillingly recited, followed by the angry cry that each “does not work” You can almost hear Johnny Rotten scowl “no future” somewhere in the distance.

Which bring us to Toyah Willcox, the link between old and new. Forty years on from playing pyromaniac Mad in the film, she presides over proceedings (and Derek Jarman’s legacy) as Queen Elizabeth I, surveying a broken Britain terrorised by a generation with no moral compass. Her presence adds just the right amount of gravitas and authenticity to a piece dominated by a young fearless cast.

Travis Alabanza is a charismatic, stand-out as Amyl Nitrate, MC of this horridly exhilarating circus, effortlessly drawing you in with a spiky blend of insults and charm. Comic lines are placed with precision. Despite the bleakness, there are laughs among the splinters. It’s a risky balancing act but the humour translates far more effectively here than it ever did in the cinema.

• Continue reading at Northern Soul.

Unrestricted Views: Jubilee, Royal Exchange

November 18th, 2017

jubilee17f“We should all be angry. Why aren’t we angry all the time?”

Derek Jarman’s classic punk film Jubilee was released in 1977. I hated it. Bewildered and repelled in equal measure, I just didn’t ‘get it’. Forty years on, I find myself sitting in the Royal Exchange theatre to watch Chris Goode’s stage adaptation. Although aware of a definite sense of trepidation, I am also excited at the prospect of a ‘free-spirited, gloriously rude, take-no-prisoners blast of a show’ (as the publicity describes it).

The pre-set establishes an almost magical mood, and the dissonant elements signal that this production intends to be faithful to Jarman’s original, bewildering vision; the theatre is adorned with graffiti and a strange, ghostly, wordless singing echoes around the space. ‘Queen Elizabeth’ (played by Torah Willcox) sits at a desk, peering into a vanity mirror while a shabby mattress lies stranded on the floor nearby.

The first scene involves a Shakespearian exchange between the Queen and her advisor, in which the angel Ariel is invoked and appears on the stairs, dressed in true punk attire and hair-style. Then, as they withdraw to survey what follows from the First Gallery, some 1970s-type streetlights descend from the ceiling and the main characters explode onto the stage; ‘Mad’, toting her gun, ‘Angel’ and ‘Sphinx’ (two brothers) who immediately strip each other naked and roll around incestuously on the shabby mattress, and ‘Crabs’, revelling in a shopping trolley. It is loud and wild and angry and ‘in-yer-face’ – and dares us to be offended or shocked or amused or exhilarated (or all of the above.) So far, so Derek Jarman. But it is the introduction of Travis Alabanza’s ‘Amyl Nitrate’ that brings Jarman’s Jubilee into 2017. Throughout the show, Alabanza delivers some blistering political diatribes, reflecting on last forty years with icy panache and passion. Addressing the audience directly, it is also she who introduces self-awareness into the proceedings, fully acknowledging the irony of this celebration of punk anarchy and vitriol being unleashed on a polite, middle-class theatre audience.

• Continue reading at Unrestricted Views.

Live Art Alive: Jubilee Review

November 18th, 2017

jubilee17gThe interior walls of the Royal Exchange Theatre are densely covered in graffiti. The music is ramped up – this is not Royal Exchange noise levels – this is JUBILEE. The stage is set with Toyah Willcox at her dressing table as Queen Elisabeth I regally pondering the future.

This is 40 years on from her anarchic role as Mads in the original Derek Jarman film. Having seen the original as a young teenager and promptly calling one of the family cats kittens after Toyah this feels like time travel for more than just Elisabeth I. Looking around the actual Royal Exchange  theatre it feels like we could be in a time travel machine. I half expected Amyl Nitrate and her girl gang to seal in the audience with barbed wire and Union Jack flag poles.

This adaptation by Chris Goode is faithful to the original film. The production is brought up to date by references to Cameron, Trump, Brexit and music tracks like Bad Girls by M.I.A but it maintains Jarman’s messy, anarchic “have a go” punk ethic.

• Continue reading at Live Art Alive.

Tameside Reporter: Royal Date for Queen of Punk Toyah

November 18th, 2017

jubilee17mIt’s your last chance to catch Toyah Willcox in Jubilee at The Royal Exchange which shows until Saturday, November 18.

Jubilee has been adapted for the stage and directed by Chris Goode and company from the original 1978 screenplay by Derek Jarman and James Whaley.  The play features legendary punk warrior Toyah Willcox, one of the film’s iconic original cast members who leads the cast as Queen Elizabeth 1 and marks the 40th Anniversary.  Jubilee is more than a play – it is an apocalyptic nihilistic spectacle of the past and future.

The enigmatic Toyah Willcox as Queen Elizabeth 1 time-travels into a contemporary dystopian Britain, observing from the theatre balcony and addressing the spectators with interludes of poetic verse.

Designer Chloe Lamford creates a backdrop of punk anarchy with Union Jacks and graffiti transporting us back to the punk era. Social comment and political references punctuated throughout the production, including the Grenfell Tower tragedy: “Tower blocks are an efficient mechanism for killing poor people”.

• Continue reading at the Tameside Reporter. (Photo © Johan Persson)

The Observer: Jubilee Review – Anarchy in the UK, 2017 Style

November 13th, 2017

jubilee17lWith its ‘no future’ message, Chris Goode’s riotous update of Derek Jarman’s punk film Jubilee rings true

Of course it is meant to be a mess. A coherent, rational or beguiling version of Derek Jarman’s punk picture of England, Jubilee, would be not simply a paradox but stage suicide. Sometimes Chris Goode’s new theatrical version – directed by the writer to mark the movie’s 40th anniversary next year – does feel like a sort of death. “We’ve lost a few people,” Travis Alabanza’s Amyl Nitrate pointed out, looking at the audience after the interval on press night. A bit of me went with them. But the leavers missed something. There are throughout jolts and jokes. And the swifter, more urgent second half has moments that can spin you around.

… It was clever in this anniversary of a jubilee to cast Toyah Willcox – who played Mad in the film – as a witty ruffed-up Gloriana, getting her handy magician John Dee to summon up visions, and towards the end joyously bursting into I Want to Be Free.

• Continue reading at The Observer. (Photo © Johan Persson)