Amadeus

Everything you've heard is true
Everything you've heard is true
AMADEUS (PG)
D: Milos Forman
Orion (Saul Zaentz)
USA 🇺🇸 1984
160 mins

Biopic/Historical

W: Peter Shaffer [based on his play]
DP: Miroslav Ondricek
Ed: Nena Danevic & Michael Chandler
Mus: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (adapted by Neville Marriner)
PD: Patrizia Von Brandenstein
Cos: Theodor Pistek

F. Murray Abraham (Antonio Salieri), Tom Hulce (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart), Elizabeth Berridge (Constance Mozart), Simon Callow (Emanuel Schikander), Roy Dotrice (Leopoldo Mozart), Christine Ebersole (Katerina Cavalieri), Jeffrey Jones (Emperor Joseph II), Charles Kay (Count Orsini-Rosenberg)

Despite the title, Antonio Salieri takes centre stage in this biopic of the famous composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, told in flashback by his murderer as he ages in a mental asylum. F. Murray Abraham is excellent as tormented composer Salieri who is left both mesmerised and jealous by Mozart's manic genius.  Tom Hulce is also fantastic as the wild composer who even quotes himself as a vulgar man.  Both actors were nominated for Oscars but it was Abraham who took away the little gold man.
The movies assets include an excellent screenplay, periodically faithful production design, beautiful photography and lavish costumes. All wonderfully directed and packaged by Czech director Milos Forman.         
Only the American accents take it down a peg (although maybe it was best the cast did use their natural voices rather than butcher the Austrian accent). Still, it's uncharacteristically fun for a subject matter which could well have been translated to the screen as incredibly stuffy and boring. 
8/10

Tom Hulce in Amadeus
Tom Hulce in Amadeus
Did You Know:
When shooting the scene in which Salieri is writing under Mozart's dictation, Tom Hulce was deliberately skipping lines to confuse F. Murray Abraham, in order to achieve the impression that Salieri wasn't able to fully understand the music being dictated.

Award Wins & Nominations:


MILSTEAD MOVIE AWARDS:

Wins: 5 (Best Ensemble Cast; Best Screenplay - Adaptation; Best Costume Design; Best Makeup; Best Sound)

Nominations: 9 (Best Picture; Best Actor in a Leading Role (x2); Best Director; Best Actor in a Supporting Role; Best Actress in a Supporting Role; Best Cinematography; Best Film Editing; Best Production Design)


OSCARS:

Wins: 8 (Best Picture; Best Actor in a Leading Role; Best Director; Best Screenplay Adaptation; Best Art Direction; Best Costume Design; Best Makeup; Best Sound)

Nominations: 3 (Best Actor in a Leading Role; Best Cinematography; Best Film Editing)


BAFTAS

Wins: 4 (Best Cinematography; Best Editing; Best Makeup; Best Sound)

Nominations: 5 (Best Film; Best Actor in a Leading Role; Best Screenplay Adaptation; Best Costume Design; Best Production Design)


OTHER WINS:

Golden Globes (Best Film - Drama; Best Actor - Drama, Best Director, Best Screenplay); Amanda Awards (Best Foreign Film); Casting Society of America (Best Casting); Cesars (Best Foreign Film); Davids (Best Foreign Film, Best Foreign Actor, Best Foreign Director); Directors Guild (Best Director); Eddies (Best Editing); Guild Arthouse Awards (Best Foreign Film); Japanese Academy Awards (Best Foreign Film); Joseph Plateau Awards (Best Film, Best Director); Kansas City Film Critics (Best Actor); Los Angeles Film Critics (Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Director, Best Screenplay); Roberts (Best Foreign Film); Silver Ribbon (Best Foreign Actor, Best Foreign Director)