3. The post-“Prologue” parts of Reed’s film are elaborately ‘choreographed’; its two parts (before and after the “Intermission”) contain multiple parallel scenes that ask the viewer to assess what kinds of developments occur as the story unfolds. Please consider the following patterns:

3. The post-“Prologue” parts of Reed’s film are elaborately ‘choreographed’; its two parts (before and after the “Intermission”) contain multiple parallel scenes that ask the viewer to assess what kinds of developments occur as the story unfolds. Please consider the following patterns:

a. The opening sequence of Part I in the quarry (carving out the marble that is headed for Rome to become a sculpture by Michelangelo) that then erupts into a battle scene vs. / and the opening sequence of Part II as Michelangelo (the artist) bursting into Julius II’s camp. Has anything changed in the status of the art object? What about the sequence near the end of the film when Michelangelo seeks out the (defeated) Pope in a military camp to as to be able to finish the ceiling? Or the very brief scene of cannons firing just before the final scene of the crowds gathered in the completed Sistine Chapel (at 2 hours, 7 min.). What is the relation between war / military activity and art in this film?

b. The two entries of the Pope into Rome in Parts I and II – once in triumph, the second time in defeat.

c. The multiple scenes when Pope Julius II is celebrating mass in the Sistine Chapel with negotiations about the ceiling / the actual painting of the ceiling interrupting the religious services. What is the relation between religious belief / faith, religious ritual, and art in this film?

d. The multiple scenes between Michelangelo and the Contessina de Medici. Is there a development in their relationship? NB: Please note that it was and is well known that Michelangelo was homosexual. Why does Reed emphasize the relationship with the Contessina the way he does? Is there any subtle / indirect evidence of Michelangelo’s homosexuality in the film? (HINT: The scene in the brothel when the Pope’s men are searching for Michelangelo and the dark-haired young male apprentice who seems to be ever present in Part II…).

e. The multiple scenes of direct conflict, but then also clever manipulation of Michelangelo by Julius II and vice versa. How does Julius II succeed in getting Michelangelo to go back to work after he has fallen from the scaffolding? How does Michelangelo provoke Julius II to recover from what appears to be his near death after his defeat in battle in Part II? Consider carefully the scene in Part II when the two of them meet up on the scaffolding and discuss the central fresco of the Creation of Adam (1 hour, 57 min. to 2 hours, 2 min.). What does Julius II see in Michelangelo’s depiction of God and Adam? Does he believe what Michelangelo believes? How does their final conversation in the Sistine Chapel relate to the conversation on the scaffolding? Is this some kind of buddy film?

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