Newest Reviews
Worst Person in the World, The
Hunter Will Get You
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse
Men, The
Parallel Mothers
Sadness, The
Bloody New Year
Body Count
Spider-Man: No Way Home
'Round Midnight
Wild Men
Barry & Joan
Wake Up Punk
Twin, The
Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy
One of These Days
Lift to the Scaffold
Savage Dawn
Rest in Pieces
Innocents in Paris
We're All Going to the World's Fair
Beyond the Door 3
Jules et Jim
Love Jones
Souvenir Part II, The
400 Blows, The
Virus: 32
Studio 666
Great Movement, The
Lost in La Mancha
Cellar, The
Sacred Spirit, The
Chess of the Wind
Nineteen Eighty-Four
Newest Articles
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
  Jubilee God Save The Queen
Year: 1977
Director: Derek Jarman
Stars: Jenny Runacre, Nell Campbell, Toyah Willcox, Jordan, Hermine Demoriane, Ian Charleson, Karl Johnson, Linda Spurrier, Neil Kennedy, Jack Birkett, Wayne County, Richard O'Brien, David Brandon, Helen Wellington-Lloyd, Adam Ant, Claire Davenport
Genre: Comedy, Drama, WeirdoBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Queen Elizabeth the First (Jenny Runacre) has her right hand man Dr John Dee (Richard O'Brien) use mysticism to conjure up an angel (Ian Charleson). She is delighted and enchanted, no more so when the angel transports them to the future where they see what has become of their beloved England, yet it's not a pretty sight with violence and devastation all around. Part of this is Amyl Nitrite (Jordan), who when not writing a history text in her own inimitable fashion is teaching her minions about their place in this new Britain, including pyromaniac Mad (Toyah Willcox) and nymphomaniac Crabs (Nell Campbell). There's revolution in the air but will anything come to fruition?

Well, there was this film at least, the first punk movie that not so much showcased the music, although that is included to some extent, but attempted to tackle the radical philosophy also. Under the direction of Derek Jarman, who also penned the script, this is no self-aggrandising cash-in in the style of Malcolm McLaren's Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle, but takes the punk movement seriously, so seriously in fact that it tends to lose the way at times, with a disjointed presentation verging on the incoherent while it mercilessly exposes punk's flaws. Where it does score is in its gritty imagery, and if the music takes second place to that, then it's spirited in other ways.

The shock value is there, of course, because without the desire to be subversive and controversial, it's doubtful that anyone would have taken much notice - nobody really wants to hear Amyl reading out her history lesson for over an hour and a half. Or if they did, they'd be better off buying a book. Among her gang is Bod, played by Runacre again, but not presumably named after the bald, yellow dress-wearing cartoon character; she seems to be the brains of the outfit, and the others look up to her, despite the claims of their being no more heroes anymore.

That's not to say there aren't any heroines, naturally, and the first time we see Bod she has appropriated the Queen's crown to wear, making her the unofficial monarch of the piece, not least because we see her as a real Queen in odd scenes dotted about the story. I say story, but it's really a selection of vignettes in dubious taste, the closest Britain ever came to the mood of a contemporary John Waters' movie, only without the glee. There's sex and violence, the traditional benchmarks of controversy, but also ideas if you can make them out, the trouble being that it's a bit of a muddle in the main.

For a revolutionary movement, this bunch do an awful lot of hanging around just killing time. The coarse humour falls flat, and it can easily be accused of something punks would abhor: pretentiousness, although a sense of self-awareness and self-parody is strongly hinted at amongst the pontificating. More than a few scenes hit the mark, and additionally it's a neat summing up of the faces of the era, with the Slits as a girl gang (not playing any tunes, however), pre-fame Adam Ant as the object of Crabs' lust, and Toyah as a borderline psychotic bundle of energy. Everyone contributes to the anarchy, or as much anarchy as can be mustered on a few World War II bomb sites, a cafe and a launderette, but now Jubilee, once so sly, modern and of the moment, looks like a antique, an item of nostalgia, and perhaps worst of all, an art movie.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 5764 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (2)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Enoch Sneed


Last Updated: