Skip to main content

DRAUGHTSMAN'S CONTRACT, THE

UK (MIFF 2009, International Panorama)

Director: Peter Greenaway

“Sex, lies and draughtsmanship.” - Guardian

Still one of Greenaway's best films to date, The Draughtsman's Contract (MIFF 83) delves into the twisted hedonism and rhetoric of 17th century aristocrats, as the wife of the wealthy and cantankerous Mr Herbert commissions a draughtsman to draw 12 pictures of their property in return for payment, board - and a daily dalliance.

Wry, hilarious and with a thread of underlying viciousness, The Draughtsman's Contract is a stylised portrait of lust, art and murder. Its cunning dialogue, lavish art direction and Michael Nyman's intense neo-baroque, Purcell-inspired music create an experience of considerable style and opulence. Steeped in a 17th-century aesthetic, Greenaway's classic features lush visuals derived from the works of Caravaggio.

“Full of the bawdy licentiousness and scabrous wit of the Jacobean era.” - BBC

D/S Peter Greenaway P David Payne WS BFI L English, German, Dutch w/English subtitles TD 35mm/1982

See also...

NIGHTWATCHING

“Rembrandt is captured in all his joyful, bawdy, self-analyzing ways, prey to passions and capable of real love.” - Variety ... Director Peter Greenaway (The Cook, The Thief, His Wife & Her ... More »

Making A Splash

Currently involved in filming the long awaited follow-up to The Draughtsman's Contract, Greenaway has been filling more commissions than he could handle. After the Channel Four series 4 American ... More »

THE DRAUGHTSMAN'S CONTRACT

A beautifully written and acted drama and yet a highly intellectual film, The Draughtsman's Contract combines the English tradition of film making with a murder story set in the 1690's. ... At the ... More »

THE FALLS

Peter Greenaway (born 1 942) may well be the most original talent unearthed by the cinema in many years. His short films have been the subject of considerable, often infuriated debate. In them he has ... More »

Act of God

An investigation of lightning as an arbitrary intervention in people's lives with devastating consequences. ... More »

Water Wrackets

A commentary on a Tolkienesque civilisation evoked by stunning and mystical lakeland imagery. ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director