Everyone from Heloise and Abelard, Christ and the Devil, the Virgin Mary and Salome, is represented in this film of a play staged in Rome. Oskar Panizza -- poet, playwright, and doctor -- wrote the original play in 1894 and was put into prison the following year then sent to an asylum in 1904, where he died 17 years later. His trial is staged at the beginning of the film, before the actual play begins. The play itself deals with a "trial" in heaven, making an ironic juxtaposition to the tragic fate of Panizza.
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