MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Down 183 this week

Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)

7.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.2/10 from 40,582 users  
Reviews: 158 user | 51 critic

George Orwell's novel of a totalitarian future society in which a man whose daily work is rewriting history tries to rebel by falling in love.

Director:

Writers:

(novel),
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

with Prime Instant Video + 1 more

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 35 titles
created 05 Sep 2011
 
a list of 35 titles
created 15 Apr 2012
 
a list of 49 titles
created 14 Jun 2012
 
a list of 48 titles
created 17 Aug 2012
 
a list of 24 titles
created 2 weeks ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)

Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984) on IMDb 7.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Nineteen Eighty-Four.

User Polls

Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

1984 (1956)
Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

George Orwell's novel of a totalitarian future society in which a man whose daily work is rewriting history tries to rebel by falling in love.

Director: Michael Anderson
Stars: Edmond O'Brien, Michael Redgrave, Jan Sterling
Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In an oppressive future, a fireman whose duty is to destroy all books begins to question his task.

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Oskar Werner, Julie Christie, Cyril Cusack
Gattaca (1997)
Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A genetically inferior man assumes the identity of a superior one in order to pursue his lifelong dream of space travel.

Director: Andrew Niccol
Stars: Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman, Jude Law
Pi (1998)
Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A paranoid mathematician searches for a key number that will unlock the universal patterns found in nature.

Director: Darren Aronofsky
Stars: Sean Gullette, Mark Margolis, Ben Shenkman
THX 1138 (1971)
Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Set in the 25th century, the story centers around a man and a woman who rebel against their rigidly controlled society.

Director: George Lucas
Stars: Robert Duvall, Donald Pleasence, Don Pedro Colley
The Fountain (2006)
Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Spanning three parallel stories over a millennium, 'The Fountain' is a story of love, death, spirituality, and the fragility of our existence in this world.

Director: Darren Aronofsky
Stars: Hugh Jackman, Rachel Weisz, Sean Patrick Thomas
Code 46 (2003)
Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A futuristic 'Brief Encounter', a love story in which the romance is doomed by genetic incompatibility.

Director: Michael Winterbottom
Stars: Tim Robbins, Samantha Morton, Om Puri
1984 (Video 2009)
Short | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

Party member Winston Smith commits the ultimate crime by falling in love with Julia.

Director: Martin Knowles
Drama

A man struggles to keep his autonomy under an oppressive regime that monitors his every move.

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
James Walker ...
Andrew Wilde ...
David Trevena ...
David Cann ...
Anthony Benson ...
Peter Frye ...
...
Waiter
Rupert Baderman ...
Corinna Seddon ...
Winston's Mother
Martha Parsey ...
Winston's Sister
Edit

Storyline

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 Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

George Orwell's Terrifying Vision Comes To The Screen. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 December 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

1984  »

Box Office

Budget:

£3,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$8,400,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Radford was initially strongly opposed to the casting of Richard Burton. See more »

Goofs

When Winston and Julia are together in the room upstairs for the second time, Julia asks Winston what time the clock on the wall says. He responds that it is 21 hours, or 9pm. When Julia leaves and Winston picks up the glass ball off the table, the clock behind it shows 2:30. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Big Brother: [voice-over] 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?
See more »

Crazy Credits

"This film was photographed in and around London during the period April-June 1984, the exact time and setting imagined by the author." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Screwball Hotel (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Julia
Written & Performed by The Eurythmics
(VHS version only)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
"We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness..."
23 May 2000 | by (Vancouver, Canada) – See all my reviews

Michael Radford's utterly superlative film of Orwell's famed novel may well be the greatest cinematic adaptation of a major literary source ever -- and it stands out as one of the most memorable British films of the past thirty years. Full credit is due to cinematographer Roger Deakins who shoots everything in grainy, washed-out, desaturated colors adding to the picture's atmosphere of wistful yet austere, dream-like strangeness. The modern London settings -- with their cobblestone streets, shabby, dilapidated buildings, desolate fields, rubble-strewn alleyways, and forbidding, blackened Gothic-Victorian façades and hints of minimalist fascist architecture -- resemble a Depression-era housing project after the Luftwaffe. And Dominic Muldowney's score, with its martial clarion calls, bombastic church-organ blasts, and swelling choral leitmotiv of `Oceania, 'tis for thee,' has a mixture of Wagnerian grandeur and Bach-like religiosity about it. All the while, the bizarre, mantra-like drones of the much-maligned Eurythmics soundtrack rises and falls, weaving in and out of the narrative like so many subconscious banshee wails.

Radford treats the book's premise not as a sci-fi flight of fantasy or grim prophecy but rather as the world of 1948 seen through a glass darkly -- a kind of medieval morality play for the post-totalitarian age. There is less emphasis on the novel's musty, well-worn-and-endlessly-picked-over polemical import and more focus on the stark human element, and indeed, the actors bear such uncanny resemblance to Orwell's descriptions they practically seem born for their roles.

With his quiet, brooding eloquence and haunted eyes peeking out of a gaunt, cadaverous frame like a tubercular, ashen-faced Egon Schiele figure, John Hurt is ideally cast as Winston Smith. As Julia, Suzanna Hamilton (first seen as a lovelorn dairymaid in Polanski's TESS and as the paralyzed daughter in BRIMSTONE AND TREACLE) has a serene, arresting presence – and she appears as mysteriously stirring and beguiling to us as she does to Hurt. She brings a captivating freshness and warmth to her role, a little reminiscent of a young Harriet Andersson. Her pale, wiry, broad-hipped body has a simple, unaffected, almost archetypal beauty, and in the film's more intimate moments, she radiates all the tactile sensual grace of a Munch or Degas nude.

As O'Brien, the Jesuitical inquisitor of infinite patience, Richard Burton delivers a superbly perspicacious swan-song performance – he becomes almost a kind of an oracular Thanatos to Hamilton's Eros. In an exquisite, maliciously Swiftian twist of irony, Burton's famous voice, with its rich, mellifluous Welsh inflections and descending cadences of Shakespearean sonnets and Dylan Thomas poetry, becomes a cruel herald of the willful, systematic destruction of the human spirit -- of `the worst thing in the world' that waits in Room 101… in the fated `place where there is no darkness.' When O'Brien tells Winston, `you are thinking that my face is old and tired…and that while I talk of power I am unable to prevent the decay of my own body,' Burton's sagging, weary face speaks volumes.

In the lesser roles, Gregor Fisher's Parsons literally resembles a sweaty frog, James Walker's Syme is the classic image of a squirrelly, mealy-mouthed hack-intellectual, while Andrew Wilde cuts the most chilling figure as the bespectacled, unblinking ‘company man,' Tillotson. The late Cyril Cusack plays Mr. Charrington, the kindly Cockney landlord who is not all that he appears to be, with an understated sentimental charm punctuated by slight flickers of calculating menace (watch closely for the way Cusack's facial expression changes whenever Hurt is not looking at him). Phyllis Logan (the star of Radford's début feature, ANOTHER TIME, ANOTHER PLACE, and a supporting player in Mike Leigh's SECRETS AND LIES) provides one of the film's most clever unacknowledged ironies: as the Telescreen Announcer, her strident, hectoring voice suggests a more shrill caricature of Margaret Thatcher.

If anything, this film makes a unique and compelling case for some of the oldest cinematic devices in the book that nearly all contemporary filmmakers have since abandoned: slow dissolves, fades, blackouts, shock-cuts, slow motion, flashbacks, montage. The high-contrast photography, alternately harsh and low-key lighting, and iconic close-up shots evoke the abstract, transcendental purity of Bresson or Dreyer. There is even one extraordinary sequence when Winston, bruised and battered, is seen having his head shorn in a holding cell that is clearly meant to recall Falconetti's famous haircutting scene in Dreyer's LA PASSION DE JEANNE D'ARC (1928). Similarly, Burton is filmed in oppressive, looming low-angle with Expressionist shadows defining the lines of his craggy visage à la Eugène Silvain's Bishop Cauchon sans the warts. And the idyllic barley fields of the ‘Golden Country,' where Winston and Julia have their first tryst is a possible homage to the titular peasant paradise of Dovzhenko's EARTH (1926).

What makes the film so powerful is not merely its fidelity to its source but its vivid sense of realism. NINETEEN EIGHTY-FOUR is such an impassioned and richly textured work that the visuals almost seem to seep into the pores of your skin, intoxicating you with dread and longing. And Radford is so adept at obscuring the boundaries that separate the ameliorative persistence of reverie from the glaring harshness of waking reality, that the film's seamless perfection becomes almost frightening.


113 of 145 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Was the party over thrown in the end? DoubleRD77
Needs to be Remade BreakingDexterSoprano
Far inferior to the 1954 BBC version outfielder24
The truth about Winston life uxg1995
Has Anyone Seen The Version With The Eurythmics Soundtrack??? enfieldboy
Favorite line or dialog from the film or book blackurbanprince
Discuss Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?