Sebastiane - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Sebastiane Reviews

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September 3, 2015
Jarman's first feature is also his least accessible, a flagrant showcase for homosexuality conveyed through the death of famous gay icon St. Sebastian. Although his signature themes (isolated gay experience, opposition from outsiders, gratuitous nudity as a means of rebellion) ultimately yield lesser results than his later work, Sebastiane remains a singularly fascinating study of a historical figure told through artful, boldly anti-establishment means.
½ June 15, 2015
Beautiful to look at, authentic but, all the swinging dicks got pretty boring after awhile.
January 6, 2015
It may be the most homoerotic film I've ever watched. Definitely worth checking out for some beautiful imagery and being filmed entirely in Latin.
Super Reviewer
October 18, 2014
A bold film for the time it came out, but it seems like a pathetic excuse to explore the beauty of sweaty masculine forms as some cheap soft-core gay porn, with terrible acting from everyone (delivering their lines in a stiff Latin) and amateurishly photographed especially in the night scenes.
Super Reviewer
July 25, 2013
I appreciated all of the Latin dialogue, but I could barely get through this. My problem with Jarman is that so much of his stuff comes off as some kind of half-baked art project . . . and the unnecessarily pornographic imagery in this film doesn't help.
October 16, 2012
Nothing but penises and desert. Not much more needed in a film like this.
June 24, 2012
My second film of Derek Jarman, his feature-length debut co-directed with Paul Humfress, it was quite a talking-point and a rousing art film in light of firstly, it speaks entirely in Latin and secondly, the interpretation of the anecdote of Saint Sebastiane was quite a stir and prompted some severe controversy at the time when it being released owing to a blatant male nudity exposure, and it brazenly features many homo-erotic scenes. And afterward, the film's notoriety has never ceased to prevail, especially considering the untimely decease of Derek Jarman.

In my instant response, with its gritty fibre, the film bears a resemblance of a dated pornography, an astonishing gambit is the opening dancing sequence of Lindsay Kemp with his troupe, which is both campy and filthy. Soon the film takes a prompt locale changeover to an arid desert where Sebastiane and other soldiers are being exiled, with a non-female premise, the masculinity carries the day, the camera lingers on the sinewy male bodies restlessly (not only Sebastiane, other soldiers are all model-designed male mannequins, maybe an OTT Neil Kennedy could not excluded by a strict criterion), slow-motions are strenuously pressed into service while two soldiers passionately caressing each other in the water. By contrast, the actors are plain numb and wooden, better serving as statues than line-readers which as if the lines are beyond their comprehension, actually the use of Latin is a ballyhoo to the max.

For me Derek Jarman has so far become an odd number to appreciate, after a throbbing viewing of CARAVAGGIO (1986, an encouraging 8/10), regrettably, SEBASTIANE backfires much stronger than I would expect, a low 4 out of 10 bursts out of my heart without any wavering, even Brian Eno cannot save it this time.
December 28, 2011
Not at all what I expected it to be. It was more like 300 mixed with Brokeback Mountain, but in a good way.
April 2, 2011
Not sure about this one. Willing to give it a try.
August 20, 2010
Jarman's first film treads an almost imperceptible line between using devout fidelity to ratify its source and using rampant infidelity to undermine it.
March 31, 2010
I like pretending Sebastiane is a movie they showed the Roman army so they would learn the dangers of sexual harassment.
February 8, 2010
Pure Erotism................
January 4, 2010
Overall I enjoyed the movie. If you are a movie afficianado and love the art and history of movie making then rent this. If not stay away.
½ July 25, 2009
Bizarre film in Latin. Very homo-erotic, but the pace of the film is dire even at 85 minutes! The story is incomprehensible, but for some reason the film is breathtaking to watch.
½ June 27, 2009
Le toma tiempo, pero logra dar cohesión a su estética y a su propuesta. Tiene mucha riqueza visual y artística, pero también, una técnica y actuaciones pobres, así como uno que otro exceso. / Takes its time, but manages to provide cohesion to its aesthetics and its overall proposition. Has much visual and artistic richness, but also poor technical quality and performances, as well as one or two excesses.
June 24, 2009
Sex Gang Children wrote a great song with the same title and even used the image from the film of the martyrdom by arrows. However, the song's lyrics seem to have nothing in common with this soft core homo porn version of Saint Sebastian's life. This is not the best movie by Derek Jarman, it's not even all that artsy, but I really do like the execution by arrows scene, and although I'm not Catholic or christian in any way, Saint Sebastian is one of my favorite saints. Maybe because I'm such a big Mishima admirer?
½ May 18, 2009
Very sensual and erotic. Not so bad!
January 28, 2009
otra forma de hacer cine desaparecida una lastima
½ January 19, 2009
Denne kommer ikke opp når det søkes på tittelen. Irriterende. Det ryktes om at dette bare er porno, men det er bare løgn. Den er vel en av de mest homoerotiske filmene som er, men det er torturen og spykologien i det hele som er poenget. Det er ofte veldig komisk når det antageligvis ikke skal være det, men det gjør bare at det ikke blir kjedelig. De fleste av stjernene får den fordi den har de peneste bildene av mannekroppen jeg noengang har sett. Faktisk. Haha.
½ July 20, 2008
Naked Roman soldiers. Speaking in Latin. Splashing in water. Forget 300: never has martyrdom been so hot!
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