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Brazil (1985) More at IMDbPro »

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Brazil -- Three Reasons Criterion Trailer for Brazil
Brazil -- A bureaucrat in a retro-future world tries to correct an administrative error and himself becomes an enemy of the state.


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8.0/10   157,051 votes »
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Down 5% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Terry Gilliam (screenplay) &
Tom Stoppard (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for Brazil on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
18 December 1985 (USA) See more »
It's only a state of mind. See more »
A bureaucrat in a retro-future world tries to correct an administrative error and himself becomes an enemy of the state. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Intriguing mixture of comedy and dystopia See more (519 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Jonathan Pryce ... Sam Lowry

Robert De Niro ... Harry Tuttle

Katherine Helmond ... Mrs. Ida Lowry

Ian Holm ... Mr. Kurtzmann

Bob Hoskins ... Spoor

Michael Palin ... Jack Lint

Ian Richardson ... Mr. Warrenn

Peter Vaughan ... Mr. Helpmann

Kim Greist ... Jill Layton

Jim Broadbent ... Dr. Jaffe
Barbara Hicks ... Mrs. Alma Terrain
Charles McKeown ... Harvey Lime

Derrick O'Connor ... Dowser
Kathryn Pogson ... Shirley
Bryan Pringle ... Spiro
Sheila Reid ... Mrs. Veronica Buttle
John Flanagan ... T.V. Interviewer / Salesman
Ray Cooper ... Technician
Brian Miller ... Mr. Archibald Buttle
Simon Nash ... Boy Buttle
Prudence Oliver ... Girl Buttle

Simon Jones ... Arrest Official
Derek Deadman ... Bill--Dept. of Works

Nigel Planer ... Charlie--Dept. of Works

Terence Bayler ... T.V Commercial Presenter

Gorden Kaye ... M.O.I. Lobby Porter
Tony Portacio ... Neighbour in Clark's Pool
Bill Wallis ... Bespectacled lurker

Winston Dennis ... Samurai Warrior

Jack Purvis ... Dr. Chapman
Elizabeth Spender ... Alison / 'Barbara' Lint
Antony Brown ... Porter - Information Retrieval
Myrtle Devenish ... Typist in Jack's Office
Holly Gilliam ... Holly
John Pierce Jones ... Basement Guard
Ann Way ... Old Lady with Dog
Don Henderson ... First Black Maria Guard
Howard Lew Lewis ... Second Black Maria Guard
Oscar Quitak ... Interview Official
Harold Innocent ... Interview Official
John Grillo ... Interview Official
Ralph Nossek ... Interview Official

David Gant ... Interview Official
James Coyle ... Interview Official
Patrick Connor ... Cell Guard

Roger Ashton-Griffiths ... Priest
Russell Keith Grant ... Young Gallant at Funeral
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sue Hodge ... Forces of Darkness
Sadie Corre ... Midget Woman (uncredited)
Margarita Doyle ... Answering Machine Voice (uncredited)
Dominic Ffytche ... Office Boy (uncredited)
Terry Forrestal ... Running Trooper (uncredited)

Terry Gilliam ... Smoking Man at Shangri-La Towers (uncredited)
John Hasler ... Naughty Little Boy (uncredited)

Frank Jakeman ... Stormtrooper (uncredited)

Sergio Kato ... Interview Official (uncredited)

Peter Sands ... Ida's Boyfriend (uncredited)

Directed by
Terry Gilliam 
Writing credits
Terry Gilliam (screenplay) &
Tom Stoppard (screenplay) &
Charles McKeown (screenplay)

Produced by
Patrick Cassavetti .... co-producer
Arnon Milchan .... producer
Original Music by
Michael Kamen 
Cinematography by
Roger Pratt 
Film Editing by
Julian Doyle 
Casting by
Irene Lamb 
Production Design by
Norman Garwood 
Art Direction by
John Beard 
Keith Pain 
Costume Design by
James Acheson 
Makeup Department
Elaine Carew .... hair stylist
Elaine Carew .... makeup artist
Sallie Evans .... hair stylist
Sallie Evans .... makeup artist
Meinir Jones-Lewis .... hair stylist (as Meinir Brock)
Meinir Jones-Lewis .... makeup artist (as Meinir Brock)
Sandra Shepherd .... hair stylist
Sandra Shepherd .... makeup artist
Aaron Sherman .... prosthetic makeup
Maggie Weston .... hair designer
Maggie Weston .... makeup designer
Maralyn Sherman .... prosthetic makeup artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Linda Bruce .... unit manager
Graham Ford .... production manager
Chantal Perrin-Cluzet .... production manager: french unit
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Richard Coleman .... third assistant director
Julian Doyle .... second unit director
Terence Fitch .... additional assistant director
Christopher Newman .... additional assistant director
Chris Thompson .... second assistant director
Guy Travers .... assistant director
Kevin Westley .... additional assistant director
Art Department
Bernard Allum .... graphic artist
Lee Apsey .... supervising carpenter
Michael Bacon .... prop man
George Ball .... property master
Françoise Benoît-Fresco .... assistant art director: France (as Françoise Benoît)
Peter Benson .... stand-by prop
Gordon Billings .... prop man
Dennis Bosher .... assistant art director
Dennis Bovington .... chargehand carpenter
Stephen Bream .... draughtsman
Anthony Cain .... signwriter (as Tony Cain)
Stan Cook .... dressing prop chargehand
Ron Cowan .... drapes
Tom Davies .... supervising carpenter
Gary Dawson .... property master
Belinda Edwards .... production buyer
John Frankish .... art department assistant
Andrew Garnet-Lawson .... scenic artist (as Andrew Lawson)
Maggie Gray .... set dressing designer
Alan Grenham .... construction stand-by
Stephen Hargreaves .... construction stand-by
Richard Harris .... construction stand-by
Brian Higgins .... construction stand-by
Craig Hillier .... assistant construction manager
David Jones .... construction stand-by
Michael Jones .... painter supervisor
Iain Lowe .... construction stand-by
John Martin .... construction stand-by
Bill McMinimee .... dreams and models construction manager
John Murphy .... chargehand plasterer
Colin Osgood .... construction stand-by
Tony Rimmington .... draughtsman
Dave Scutt .... graphic artist
Stephen Tranfield .... plasterer supervisor
Peter Verard .... construction manager
Christine Vincent .... art department research
Barry Vine .... construction stand-by
Robert Voysey .... construction stand-by (as Bob Voisey)
Peter Wallis .... prop man
Kenneth Welland .... chargehand painter (as Ken Welland)
David Wicks .... plasterer supervisor
Dave Wiggins .... rigger supervisor
Dennis Wraight .... construction stand-by
John Wright .... construction stand-by
Steve Pugh .... stagehand (uncredited)
Sound Department
Paul Carr .... re-recording mixer
Bob Doyle .... sound recordist
Rodney Glenn .... sound editor
Rosie Straker .... boom operator
Eric Tomlinson .... sound recording engineer (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Ron Burton .... special effects buyer
Terence J. Cox .... special effects assistant (as Terence Cox)
Martin Gant .... special effects technician
George Gibbs .... special effects supervisor
Darrell Guyon .... special effects runner
Ray Hanson .... special effects technician
Ernest Hill .... special effects assistant
Bob Hollow .... special effects technician (as Robert Hollow)
Dave Knowles .... special effects assistant
David McCall .... special effects technician (as Dave McCall)
Tim Willis .... special effects runner
David Harris .... pyrotechnician (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Peter Aston .... model vehicle
Ray Caple .... matte artist
Valerie Charlton .... model maker
Richard Conway .... model effects supervisor
Julian Doyle .... model photographer
Nick Dunlop .... optical effects
Kent Houston .... optical effects
Stefan Lange .... optical effects (as Neil Sharp)
Richard Morrison .... optical effects
Tim Ollive .... optical effects
Roger Pratt .... model photographer
Stanley W. Sayer .... blue screen consultant (as Stanley Sayer)
Tim Spence .... model photographer
Vic Armstrong .... stunts
Toby Clark .... stunt double: Small Sam
Tim Condren .... stunts
George Lane Cooper .... stunts
Clive Curtis .... stunts
Perry Davey .... stunts
Jim Dowdall .... stunts
Terry Forrestal .... stunts
Tex Fuller .... stunts
Martin Grace .... stunts
Frank Henson .... stunts
Nick Hobbs .... stunts
Billy Horrigan .... stunts (as Bill Horrigan)
Wayne Michaels .... stunts
Dinny Powell .... stunts
Greg Powell .... stunts
Terry Richards .... stunts
Tip Tipping .... stunts
Chris Webb .... stunts
Bill Weston .... stunt arranger
Camera and Electrical Department
David Appleby .... still photographer
Peter Butler .... camera grip
Mark Cridlin .... clapper loader
Perry Evans .... electrician
Chuck Finch .... best boy
Jean-Yves Freess .... grip: France
Simon Fulford .... clapper loader
David Garfath .... camera operator
Alan Grosch .... electrician
Brian Herlihy .... additional assistant camera
John Ignatius .... assistant camera
Jean-Claude Le Bras .... chief electrician: France (as Jean-Claude LeBras)
Brian Martin .... best boy
Steve Parker .... additional assistant camera
John 'Porky' Rivers .... grip (as Porky Rivers)
Les Rodhouse .... electrician
Roy Rodhouse .... gaffer
Brian Sullivan .... electrician
Toby Tyler .... electrician
George White .... electrician
Kevin Brookner .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Casting Department
Margery Simkin .... casting: USA
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Martin Adams .... costumes
Anthony Black .... wardrobe assistant
Vin Burnham .... costumes
Jamie Courtier .... costumes
Jean Fairlie .... wardrobe mistress
Annie Hadley .... costumes
Gilly Hebden .... assistant costume editor
Ray Scott .... costumes
Joyce Stoneman .... wardrobe supervisor
Frank Vinall .... wardrobe master
Colin Wilson .... wardrobe assistant
Editorial Department
Cilla Beirne .... assistant editor
Peter Compton .... assistant editor
Margarita Doyle .... assistant editor
Brent Eldridge .... digital color correction
Sally Kinnes .... post-production assistant
Keith Lowes .... assistant editor
Roya Salari .... assistant editor
Location Management
Yves Dutheil .... location manager: France (as Yves Duteil)
Hamish Scott .... location researcher
Music Department
Ray Cooper .... music coordinator
Andy Jackson .... additional music recordist
Haydn Bendall .... music recording/mixing engineer (uncredited)
Ray Cooper .... composer: additional music (uncredited)
Vic Fraser .... music preparation (uncredited)
Michael Johns .... music editor (uncredited)
Michael Kamen .... conductor (uncredited)
Michael Kamen .... music arranger (uncredited)
Michael Kamen .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Sidney Sax .... musician: violin solo (uncredited)
Sidney Sax .... orchestral fixer (uncredited)
Eric Tomlinson .... music mixer (uncredited)
E.C. Woodley .... composer: additional music (uncredited)
Other crew
Margaret Adams .... production coordinator
Alan Arnold .... publicist
Laurence Bodini .... production runner
Lesley Broderick .... assistant accountant
Terry Connors .... production accountant
Ira Curtis-Coleman .... video consultant (as Ira Curtis Coleman)
Nick Dunlop .... title designer
Penny Eyles .... script supervisor
Geoff Freeman .... publicist
William Hobbs .... samurai fight arranger (as Bill Hobbs)
Denis Hopperton .... stand-by prop chargehand
Kent Houston .... title designer
Stefan Lange .... title designer (as Neil Sharp)
Elaine Matthews .... trainee continuity (as Melanie Matthews)
Judith May .... cashier
Barry McCormick .... footstep editor
Arnon Milchan .... presenter
Richard Morrison .... title designer
Tim Ollive .... title designer
Katy Radford .... secretary
Matthew Scudamore .... production runner
Bob Stilwell .... follow focus
Margarita Doyle .... assistant to Terry Gilliam (uncredited)
Sarah Teboul .... accounting assistant (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for some strong violence
132 min | USA:94 min (edited version) | 142 min (director's cut)
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:16 | Australia:M | Brazil:14 | Canada:PA (Manitoba) | Canada:A (Nova Scotia) | Canada:AA (Ontario) | Canada:G (Québec) | Finland:K-16 | France:12 | Germany:12 (re-rating) (2003) | Italy:T | Netherlands:12 | New Zealand:R13 (original rating) | New Zealand:M (re-rating) | Norway:16 (1985) | Peru:18 | Portugal:M/16 (Qualidade) | Singapore:PG | Singapore:PG13 (director's cut) | South Korea:15 (DVD rating) | Spain:13 | Sweden:15 | UK:15 | USA:R | West Germany:18 (1985-2003)

Did You Know?

Jonathan Pryce's role as Sam was written years earlier with him in mind. The character was originally designed to be in his mid-twenties (Pryce was only about 30 when Terry Gilliam was developing the script), but after many years in limbo, Gilliam changed the character's age to mid-to-late thirties so that then-37-year-old Pryce could still play the role.See more »
Continuity: When Harry Tuttle escapes from Sam Lowry's flat, the front door is shown open from the outside and the room is fully lit. However in the previous and subsequent shots, the flat is almost dark.See more »
[first lines]
Singers:[TV commercial jingle] Central Services: We do the work, you do the pleasure.
TV commercial pitchman:Hi, there. I want to talk to you about ducts.
See more »
Sam Lowry's 1st DreamSee more »


Why is it called Brazil?
What did the giant samurai represent?
What is the gift Sam keeps getting and giving?
See more »
129 out of 192 people found the following review useful.
Intriguing mixture of comedy and dystopia, 25 September 2006
Author: kylopod ( from Baltimore, MD

One of the truest statements about originality in art comes from T.S. Eliot: "Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal." Terry Gilliam is one of cinema's mature poets. His "Brazil" features homages to numerous other films, ranging from "Modern Times" to "The Empire Strikes Back," and its plot is broadly similar to "Nineteen Eighty-Four." Yet the result is intriguingly fresh and creative.

The best adjective to describe the movie's tone is "whimsical." It's the type of sci-fi film with an almost childlike fascination with strange sights and happenings. Rarely has a film so pessimistic been this much fun. Many sci-fi films since "Brazil" have attempted a similar approach, usually with little success. The chief problem with most such films (e.g. "The Fifth Element") is that they get bogged down in plot at the expense of emotional resonance. "Brazil" avoids this fate: while the movie possesses psychological and thematic complexity, its plot is fairly simple, and the humor, quirky as it is, never relies on throwaway gags. Even the oddest moments have a certain poignance.

The story seems to take place in a fascist alternative world. It isn't "the future" exactly. The technology is weird-looking but hardly superior to anything in our world. Money transactions are sent through pipes in what looks sort of like a crude version of ATM. (One of the film's several nods to silent movies occurs after a character tries to stuff one of these pipes with wads of paper.) The pop culture references are positively retro, from the title song to scenes from the film "Casablanca."

The evil of the government in this film is driven not so much by cruelty as by bureaucratic incompetence, much of which is played for laughs. But some of the scenes look eerie today, in our post-9/11 world, and are good fodder for conspiracy theorists. Pay particular attention to the scene where the official boasts that the government is winning its war against "the terrorists." The movie is ambiguous as to whether there are any real terrorists, and we have a sneaking suspicion that the explosions are caused by the government itself. The plot is set in motion by a typographical error leading an innocent man to be arrested instead of a suspected terrorist. The movie is not about this man but about a meek government worker, Sam Lowry (Jonathan Pryce), who's observing from the sidelines. Robert De Niro has a cameo as the wanted "terrorist" whose crime, from what we see, consists of doing home repairs without the proper paperwork.

I have noticed that most of the classic dystopian tales are fundamentally similar to one another. But "Brazil" approaches the genre in a uniquely psychological way. Sam Lowry is different from the standard protagonist who rebels against the government due to noble motives. He doesn't seem to have any larger goals than his own personal ones. He isn't trying to make the world a better place. He's only longing for a better life for himself, one more exciting and romantic than the humdrum existence he currently occupies, where he's beset by an overbearing mother, a pitiful boss, and a dull job. In the midst of this bureaucratic nightmare state, he cares only about such matters as getting his air conditioning fixed and stalking a female stranger who physically resembles his fantasy woman--or so he perceives. The woman, as played by Kim Greist, appears in his fantasies as a helpless damsel with long, flowing hair and a silky dress who sits in a cage while he battles a giant Samurai warrior. The real-life woman he pursues, also played by Greist, sports a butch haircut, drives a large truck, and has a cigarette dangling from the corner of her mouth.

It's a testament to Pryce's performance that he commands our total sympathy the whole time. We feel for him and go along with the romantic adventure he attempts to create for himself. His nervous, stammering personality is one that would have been easy to overdo, yet Pryce strikes just the right note, especially as we begin questioning the character's sanity. At one point, another character tells him that "You're paranoid; you've got no sense of reality." But who wouldn't be paranoid in such a setting? The scene brings to mind the old joke that goes "You're not paranoid. Everyone really is out to get you." The movie inhabits such a whacky, surreal world full of strange people and sights that Sam Lowry almost seems sensible by comparison. Creating a character like this was a fresh, innovative twist on a genre that normally loses sight of human personalities.

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