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Brazil (1985)

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A bureaucrat, in a retro-future world, tries to correct an administrative error and becomes an enemy of the state.

Director:

Terry Gilliam

Writers:

Terry Gilliam (screenplay by), Tom Stoppard (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
2,036 ( 149)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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. Terrain
Charles McKeown ... Lime
Derrick O'Connor ... Dowser
Kathryn Pogson Kathryn Pogson ... Shirley
Bryan Pringle ... Spiro
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Storyline

Sam Lowry is a harried technocrat in a futuristic society that is needlessly convoluted and inefficient. He dreams of a life where he can fly away from technology and overpowering bureaucracy, and spend eternity with the woman of his dreams. While trying to rectify the wrongful arrest of one Harry Buttle, Lowry meets the woman he is always chasing in his dreams, Jill Layton. Meanwhile, the bureaucracy has fingered him responsible for a rash of terrorist bombings, and both Sam and Jill's lives are put in danger. Written by Philip Brubaker <coda@nando.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's about flights of fantasy. And the nightmare of reality. Terrorist bombings. And late night shopping. True Love. And creative plumbing. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 December 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Brasil See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$30,099, 22 December 1985, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$9,929,135
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited) | (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jonathan Pryce's role as Sam was written several years earlier with him in mind. The character was originally designed to be in his mid twenties (Pryce was only about thirty 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 thirty-seven-year-old Pryce could still play the role. See more »

Goofs

When Sam is in Helpmann's office looking at the printer, pre-printed text can clearly be seen on the feeder roll. See more »

Quotes

[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 »

Crazy Credits

The closing shot of Lowry incarcerated humming to himself provides the backdrop for the end credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

The European version contains a few scenes cut from the American release:
  • Shortly before the troops storm Mrs. Buttle's home, her daughter says to her "Father Christmas cant come if you haven't got a chimney." Mrs. Buttle replies with "You'll see."
  • A brief scene involving Sam and his mother Ida entering the restaurant where they meet Mrs. Terrain and Shirley. They have to pass through a metal detector in order to gain entrance, and Ida's present to Sam (one of the "Executive Decision Makers", seen later in the movie) sets off the alarm.
  • Part of the beginning of the first "Samurai" dream sequence, where Sam explores through the concrete labyrinth he finds himself in. In the European release, the Samurai sequence is one long sequence, whereas in the American version is is divided into three separate sequences.
  • A scene where Sam and Jill lie in bed after the implied consummation of their relationship. Jill has taken off the wig she was wearing in the scene before, and has a pink bow tied around her naked body. She says to Sam: "Something for an executive?" and he unties her.
  • The "Interrogation" scene, where Sam is charged with all of the violations of the law he committed throughout the film, including "wasting Ministry time and paper."
  • The "Father Christmas" scene where Helpmann visits Sam after his booking, Helpmann is dressed as Santa Claus. Among other things, Helpmann informs Sam that Jill Layton has been killed... twice.
  • The European release begins abruptly with the 'Central Services' advert about ducts, and ends with a held shot of Lowry in the cooling tower. No clouds.
See more »

Connections

References The Archie Show (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Sam Lowry's 1st Dream/Brazil
(uncredited)
Performed by Michael Kamen featuring Kate Bush
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Terry Gilliam's 1984
8 November 2000 | by eibon09See all my reviews

Brazil(1985) is a great SCIFI feature that's one of the most visually rewarding films to watch. The movie deals with a computer error that causes havoc for the protagonist, Sam Lowry. Sam Lowry is someone who dreams of living as an individual, away from the system of Big Brother. The movie is heavily influenced by George Orwell's classic novel, 1984. Brazil(1985) is the closest thing to a perfect adaptation of 1984 for the big screen.

Brazil(1985) is more well known for what happened behind the scenes than anything that happens in the film. There was a bitter battle between the director and producer that ended up in the cutting of the film much to Terry Gilliam's disapproval. As a result there are three cuts of the film(director, studio, TV). I've seen both the 142Minute and 132Minute version. In my opinion, the 142Minute edition is the definite one to watch.

Jonathan Pryce as Sam Lowry does a great act in showing someone who is imprisoned by the system. Robert De Niro plays Sam Lowry's alter ego, Harry Tuttle in an eccentric role for the actor. At first De Niro wanted the role of Sam's best friend but instead got the role of the spy Harry Tuttle. The film retains the forbidden love affair between Sam Lowry and Jill Layton that is an important element in 1984. A lot of scens that involved Kim Griest were cut due to the dissatifaction of her performance from the director.

Brazil(1985) is Terry Gilliam's masterwork and a well directed piece by the filmmaker himself. The set designs are dazzling and the depiction of city life is nothing short of amazing. The title song is one of the most famous tunes. Much better then 12 Monkeys(1996) because this is a more complete film. Brazil(1985) is part of a trilogy that includes Time Bandits(1981) and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen(1988).

This trilogy is really about the progression of life that begins in Childhood, continues in Middleage, and ends with Old age. Brazil(1985) is really about the uncertainties of middleage. The samurai dream sequences are a marvalous example of the symbolisms they provide for the movie. Bob Hoskins gives a dark humorous act as a government plumber. The dream sequences with Sam Lowry and his dream girl are beautifully romantic.


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