Jarman, here working with his biggest budget, took the Christopher Marlowe play and adapted it pretty faithfully adding a visual subtext of gay oppression and expression resulting in one of his best realized creations. The wildly anachronistic visual pastiche is a triumph as is the wonderful costume creations of Sandy Powell long before the multiple Oscars she would score later in her career.
A pure marvel. Enjoyed every single shot of it, full of Jarman's trademark anachronisms, Tilda Swinton's gorgeous looks and a bewitching combination of passion and the frenzy of despair that burns the characters out. [The final scene with little Edward dancing on a cage is oh so poignantly beautiful]
Resolutely 'queer' take on Marlowe, overlaid with needless (then contemporary) agit prop. It works in fits and starts with the stark, studio-bound staging enhanced by some crisp performances from Terry and Swinton, although Jarman lays on the queerness with a heavy spade. However, it's a fairly steady narrative away from the director's more personal experiments in tone and form. Straight forward.