spacetime coordinates: Coney Island in the 1950’s
Wonder Wheel is a 2017 American period drama film written and directed by Woody Allen, and starring Jim Belushi, Kate Winslet, Juno Temple, and Justin Timberlake. The film is set in the early 1950s at an amusement park on Coney Island, and named for the park’s Ferris wheel. The story follows the second wife and the estranged daughter of a carousel operator as they both pursue affairs with a life guard.
spacetime coordinates: Limehouse in Victorian London (1880)The Limehouse Golem is a 2016 British horror-mystery film directed by Juan Carlos Medina from a screenplay by Jane Goldman. The film, an adaptation of Peter Ackroyd‘s 1994 murder mystery novel Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem, it stars Olivia Cooke, Bill Nighy, and Douglas Booth.
spacetime coordinates: unnamed war-torn European city in “The Age of Reason” (late 18th century, Wednesday)The Adventures of Baron Munchausen is a 1988 adventure fantasy film co-written and directed by Terry Gilliam, starring John Neville, Sarah Polley, Eric Idle, Jonathan Pryce, Oliver Reed, and Uma Thurman.
The film is based on the tall tales about the 18th-century German nobleman Baron Munchausen and his wartime exploits against the Ottoman Empire.
Wittgenstein is a 1993 film by the English director Derek Jarman. It is loosely based on the life story as well as the philosophical thinking of the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein. The adult Wittgenstein is played by Karl Johnson.
The original screenplay was by the literary critic Terry Eagleton. Jarman heavily rewrote the script during pre-production and shooting, radically altering the style and structure, although retaining much of Eagleton’s dialogue. The story is not played out in a traditional setting, but rather against a black backdrop within which the actors and key props are placed, as if in a theatre setting.
A dramatization, in modern theatrical style, of the life and thought of the Viennese-born, Cambridge-educated philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951), whose principal interest was the nature and limits of language. A series of sketches depict the unfolding of his life from boyhood, through the era of the first World War, to his eventual Cambridge professorship and association with Bertrand Russell and John Maynard Keynes. The emphasis in these sketches is on the exposition of the ideas of Wittgenstein, a homosexual, and an intuitive, moody, proud, and perfectionistic thinker generally regarded as a genius.
spacetime coordinates: 1933 rural Alabama, Manderlay plantation
Manderlay is a 2005 internationally co-produced avant-garde drama film written and directed by Lars von Trier and the second part of von Trier’s projected USA – Land of Opportunities trilogy. It stars Bryce Dallas Howard, who replaces Nicole Kidman in the role of Grace Mulligan. The film co-stars Willem Dafoe, replacing James Caan. Lauren Bacall, Željko Ivanek, Jeremy Davies, and Chloë Sevigny return portraying different characters from those in Dogville. Only John Hurt, Udo Kier, and Jean-Marc Barr reprise their roles.
spacetime coordinates: Venice, 1596
The Merchant of Venice is a 2004 romantic drama film based on Shakespeare‘s play of the same name. It is the first full-length sound film in English of Shakespeare’s play
The title character is the merchant Antonio (Jeremy Irons), not the Jewish moneylender Shylock (Al Pacino) who is the more prominent character. This adaptation follows the text, but omits much. Director Michael Radford believed that Shylock was Shakespeare’s first great tragic hero who reaches a catastrophe due to his own flaws. The film begins with text and a montage of how the Jewish community is abused by the Christian population of Venice and brings attention to the fact that, as a convert, Shylock would have been cast out of the Jewish ghetto in Venice.
(trivia) the bare-breasted prostitutes were not put in the film to make it more risqué, but rather to add a note of historical authenticity. Venetian law at the time required all prostitutes to bare their breasts because the Christian authorities were concerned about rampant homosexuality in their city.