Notionally the biographical story of Michelangelo’s troubles while painting the Sistine Chapel at the urging of Pope Julius II. But the historical inaccuracies in the movie are abundant . . .
There is no record of Michelangelo’s having been ministered to in times of illness by any contessinas, beautiful or otherwise, and most Renaissance historians agree that the real Michelangelo would have probably been more interested in a male nurse anyway.
Other fanciful or fraudulent moments in Agony include Michelangelo’s angry destruction of his first attempt at the chapel and his vision of what the true completion of his work should look like, which is glimpsed one morning in a gloriously arranged mural of cloud banks.
Pope Julius II
Contessina de Medici
Francesco Maria della Rovere, Duke of Urbino
Cardinal Giovanni de Medici
Paris De Grassis