7.2/10
17,665
102 user 33 critic

The Year of Living Dangerously (1982)

A young Australian reporter tries to navigate the political turmoil of Indonesia during the rule of President Sukarno with the help of a diminutive photographer.

Director:

Peter Weir

Writers:

David Williamson (screenplay), Peter Weir (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
4,723 ( 445)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Linda Hunt ... Billy Kwan
Mel Gibson ... Guy Hamilton
Bembol Roco ... Kumar
Domingo Landicho Domingo Landicho ... Hortono
Hermino De Guzman Hermino De Guzman ... Immigration Officer
Michael Murphy ... Pete Curtis
Noel Ferrier Noel Ferrier ... Wally O'Sullivan
Paul Sonkkila Paul Sonkkila ... Kevin Condon
Ali Nur Ali Nur ... Ali
Dominador Robridillo Dominador Robridillo ... Betjak Man
Joel Agona Joel Agona ... Palace Guard
Mike Emperio Mike Emperio ... Sukarno
Bernardo Nacilla Bernardo Nacilla ... Dwarf
Bill Kerr ... Colonel Henderson
Sigourney Weaver ... Jill Bryant
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Storyline

Guy Hamilton is a journalist on his first job as a foreign correspondent. His apparently humdrum assignment to Indonesia soon turns hot as President Sukarno electrifies the populace and frightens foreign powers. Guy soon is the hottest reporter on the story with the help of his photographer, half- Chinese dwarf Billy Kwan, who has gone native. Guy's affair with diplomat Jill Bryant also helps. Eventually Guy must face some major moral choices and the relationship between Billy and him reaches a crisis at the same time the politics of Indonesia does. Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A Love Caught In The Fire Of Revolution See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Australia | USA

Release Date:

18 February 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El año que vivimos en peligro See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$35,000, 21 January 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$10,278,575
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Second time Mel Gibson and Bill Kerr worked together albeit indirectly; "Gallipoli" and the "Year of Living Dangerously". See more »

Goofs

Billy Kwan should have the same type of dwarfism as his father, and yet his limbs and body are perfectly normal despite his small size. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Billy Kwan: June 25th, 1965. Dossier H-10. Hamilton, Guy. Born 1936 under the sign of Capricorn. Occupation: Journalist with the Australian Broadcasting Service. Jakarta: first assignment as foreign correspondent.
See more »


Soundtracks

White Cliffs of Dover
By Walter Kent (uncredited) and Nat Burton (uncredited)
Performed by Vera Lynn
Courtesy of EMI Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A brilliant exposition of Indonesia circa the 1965 revolution
17 December 1998 | by MaruliSee all my reviews

15 years after its release, I finally get to see what to my knowledge is the only english-speaking film that tells the story of Indonesia circa the 1965 revolution.

A very young Gibson is convincing as the inexperienced but ambitious reported determined to make his mark in telling the story of Sukarno's last moments in power. Equally brilliant is Sigourney Weaver, and yet one feels that this film did not give her the opportunity to show her true calibre.

The one who ultimately steals the show, then, is Linda Hunt, playing the enigmatic and passionate Billy, who understands the true psyche of Indonesia better than any of the other foreign characters in this story.

When Billy solemnly expresses his disappointment to Guy, proclaiming, "I created you", it evoked images of Weir's latest masterpiece, The Truman Show, where Christof has fashioned the persona of Truman Burbank for his TV spectacle. Perhaps a running theme in Peter Weir's work? Must check out...

I marvelled at the authenticity of the setting. It certainly looked like Jakarta. The faces, the atmosphere, the buildings, and yet, those scenes were shot in the Philippines, with mainly Filipino actors! Just goes to show the similarity among Indonesia and the Philippines.

I see now why this film was never made available in Indonesia (to my knowledge). The last few moments of the film show the stark reality of communist executions by Soeharto's new military regime, horrifying pictures of mere pawns being slaughtered... and the parting message from a self-confessed PKI member:"Am I stupid for wanting to change my country's condition?" is one of the best lines in this film.


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