After The Atomic War the world is divided into three states. London is a city in Oceania, ruled by a party who has total control over all its citizens. Winston Smith is one of the bureaucrats, rewriting history in one of the departments. One day he commits the crime of falling in love with Julia. They try to escape Big Brother's listening and viewing devices, but, of course, nobody can really escape... Written by
Richard Branson's Virgin Films, the production company bankrolling the movie, had wanted a commercially viable pop act to compose the music for the film to increase its market potential. Originally, they approached David Bowie, who had used Orwell's novel as inspiration for some songs on his 1974 album, "Diamond Dogs", but he demanded too much money for the job. They opted instead for Eurythmics, who had initially turned down the offer but later accepted. Michael Radford was unaware of this plan, and had already hired Dominic Muldowney to compose the entirety of the film's musical score. Virgin Films exercised their right of final cut, and replaced most of Muldowney's score with the Eurythmics score, for the film's theatrical release (some of Muldowney's score remained, particularly the state anthem, "Oceania, 'Tis for Thee"). Radford was displeased with this development, and retaliated by withdrawing the film for consideration for BAFTA award for Best Picture. When the film did win the Evening Standard award for Best Film of the Year, Radford used his acceptance speech at the nationally televised ceremony to denounce the Eurythmics involvement. The Eurythmics released a statement that they were unaware of the dispute, and would not have accepted the commission if they had known it was done against the director's consent. The Eurythmics soundtrack was released as the album "1984 (For the Love of Big Brother)" in 1984; the complete Muldowney score was finally released as a limited-edition CD "Nineteen Eighty-Four: The Music of Oceania" in 1999, to commemorate the film's fifteenth anniversary. All home video versions have used the theatrical Eurythmics score, except a 2003 DVD release that featured the Muldowney score; this version quickly went out of print. All releases of the film, with both versions of the score, have jointly credited Eurythmics and Muldowney in both the opening and closing credits. See more »
When the telescreen is broadcasting the news that Ogilvy has been awarded the order of Conspicuous Gallantry, the announcer says that Ogilvy has received the order for his actions against the forces of Eastasia. However, at that point of the movie Oceania is at war with Eurasia, not Eastasia. See more »
This is our land. A land of peace and of plenty. A land of harmony and hope. This is our land. Oceania. These are our people. The workers, the strivers, the builders. These are our people. The builders of our world, struggling, fighting, bleeding, dying. On the streets of our cities and on the far-flung battlefields. Fighting against the mutilation of our hopes and dreams. Who are they?
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After the end credits finish and the screen goes black, the monotonous end-title music keeps droning on for nine more minutes. See more »
Merely a few days after finishing my read of George Orwell's fantastic 1948 novel "Nineteen Eighty-Four", I was immediately keen on looking to rent the modern film version, "1984" - filmed, appropriately enough, not only during the actual YEAR of 1984, but also during the exact same short span of months that the story took place in. This, to me, is a prime example of perfect, and unbelievably well-timed, brilliance. A picture based on such complex, prophetic, and well-known material could have turned out to be a complete disaster (which it certainly had potential for, judging from the horrendous-looking DVD cover); thankfully, however, I was not disappointed.
"1984" is probably one of the most, if not THE most, masterful transitions from book to movie I have ever seen. Easily, its most impressive aspect was its phenomenal accuracy, attention to detail, etc. In other words, this film was FAITHFUL, in every sense of the word, to its source material. One can't give such a statement about films these days.
Amazing casting, terrific musical score, and mind-blowing sets, cinematography, and direction, "1984" is surely a unique treasure, and one that still retains the same timeless messages even decades since its release.
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