Apr 15, 2013

A Movie Review: Amadeus (1984)

I love reviewing yummy foods and fun restaurants, but I do a lot of other things in my free time, too.

Okay, so there isn't super much free time, per se, during the semester. But sometimes procrastination is necessary. Everyone needs a little relaxation time!

I watched Amadeus the other day during my self-alotted free time!

For those who are unfamiliar with the film, here's the summary from the New York Times Review, to familiarize you with the basic plot points.

"For this film adaptation of Peter Shaffer's Broadway hit, director Milos Forman returned to the city of Prague that he'd left behind during the Czech political crises of 1968, bringing along his usual cinematographer and fellow Czech expatriate, Miroslav OndrĂ­cek. Amadeus is an expansion of a Viennese "urban legend" concerning the death of 18th century musical genius Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

From the vantage point of an insane asylum, aging royal composer Salieri (F. Murray Abraham) recalls the events of three decades earlier, when the young Mozart (Tom Hulce) first gained favor in the court of Austrian emperor Joseph II (Jeffrey Jones).Salieri was incensed that God would bless so vulgar and obnoxious a young snipe as Mozart with divine genius. Why was Salieri -- so disciplined, so devoted to his art, and so willing to toady to his superiors -- not touched by God? 

Unable to match Mozart's talent, Salieri uses his influence in court to sabotage the young upstart's career. Disguising himself as a mysterious benefactor, Salieri commissions the backbreaking {&Requiem}, which eventually costs Mozart his health, wealth, and life. Among the film's many pearls of dialogue, the best line goes to the emperor, who rejects a Mozart composition on the grounds that it has "too many notes." 

Amadeus won eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Actor for F. Murray Abraham. In 2002, the film received a theatrical re-release as "Amadeus: The Director's Cut," a version that includes 20 minutes of additional footage." ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

I was really surprised when I looked back at the DVD box and saw that it's from 1984. When I told my mom about it, she said she saw it in the theaters when it first came out!

But I would have never guessed that it's an older movie. I've seen movies made in the early 2000s that are of worse quality than this movie!

The picture quality is amazing. The colors are vibrant, lines are crisp, and sound is clear. All the better for enjoying Mozart's amazing compositions and the STUNNING costumes.

Okay, so I wasn't wild about Mozart's hair...

But the costumes and sets are stunning, the story gripping, and cast delightful. Through and through, the movie is excellently done. I rarely watch the same movie twice, but this one is definitely worth a repeat viewing.

In fact, I watched it again just a few days after the first time I saw it!

Which is why I just had to share it with you. Seriously, go out and rent this movie now. It's a real treat! And that's before you even take the awe-inspiring soundtrack, featuring some of Mozart's greatest works, into account.

Amadeus is available on both DVD and BluRay.

What's the last movie you saw?

What's one of the prettiest movies you've ever seen?

Do you prefer live-action or cartoons?

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