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Thread: Michael Radford's 1984

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    Senior Member Gladstone's Avatar
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    Post Michael Radford's 1984

    April 4, 1984

    To the past, or to the future,
    to an age when thought is free,
    from the age of Big Brother,
    from the age of the Thought Police,
    from a dead man,
    greetings.


    Thus one is first introduced to Winston Smith as he writes an entry into his diary in director Michael Radford's "1984". This second movie made of Orwell's book (the first being made in the 1950's) is superb and clearly a labor of love by it's director. Radford makes sure every detail is in place and nothing amiss in his creation, no idio-synchrocies here. The actor John Hurt is Winston and the luscious Suzanna Hamilton is Julia. Richard Burton makes his final screen appearance as O'Brien, the Inner Party Member. Cyril Cusack, who incidently was in the 1966 film version of "Farenheit 451", is Charrington, a member of the Thought Police. The soundtrack is provided by the Eurythmics and is quite well done, tho should you buy or rent the movie be sure to get the VHS as the new DVD release does not have the excellent origonal music sound track for some reason. The movie has the distinction, and curiosity, of being filmed in an around London between April and June 1984 just as Orwell had written in the book. A special color process was produced for the film by Kay Laboratories and it shows particularly with the rich blues and reds, and fine over all texture. The movie also provides the chance to see many excellent examples of the English person, a physically handsome people.

    In our "politically correct" times where perfectly good English words have been trashed due to abuse the dialogue of this production fits right in. When Winston ask his friend Sullivan whom is working on the Newspeak Dictionairy how his work is going Sullivan answers that

    "It's a beautiful thing the destruction of words."
    Winston responds with "So the revolution will be complete when the language is perfect?"
    To which Sullivan answers "The secret is to move from translation to direct thought, to automatic response. No need for self discipline." He then proceeds to state "It's an encouraging thought that by 2050 not a single person will be able to have a conversation like this."


    Of course there is the famous "War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength" line. But wouldn't the modern "pc" slogan "Unity thru Diversity" fit right in with those other oxymorons?

    Then there is the Inner Party member O'Brien's statements

    "The Law of gravity is nonsense. No such law exist. If I think I float, and you think I float, then it happens."

    One can almost hear O'Brien going on to state that biological differences between peoples (ie race) is all simply a "social construct" and not real. As if his merely wishing something so can make it so. Yet this is the same "fufu tufu" mindset of many of the people we deal with.

    Winston in a later diary entry provides a valuable idea for us

    May 12, 1984

    If there is truth and there is untruth,
    freedom is the freedom to say two plus two equals four.
    If that is granted, all else follows.


    That idea is to concentrate on the basic truths of what we want to say and hold on to those, truths that transcend particular ideologies; the truths that while there are similarities between peoples, there are also very real differences, and Europe has the right to preserve itself, etc. Some have suggested copying the methods of the rad-libs, ie Antonio Gramsci, Lenin, among others, which in practice has meant people obtaining positions of power by misrepresenting themselves (ie lying) to others. A method similar to how a virus works in quite a few ways. However there is a huge moral cost when one uses fraud and deceit to obtain power, one can't expect there not to be one. In fact I think "1984" was a warning of what can easily happen when the ends justifies the means is policy for advancement of one's ideas, as apparently powerul elements of radical liberalism have fallen into. Orwell put it best in his book of what the result could well be based on his personal observations of 1930's-40's Europe

    "Imagine a human face being stamped by a boot forever."

    So on a quiet night when you don't have much else going on, grab yourself a bottle of "Victory Gin" and watch the movie. You will be glad you did, Brother!
    Last edited by Gladstone; Monday, November 3rd, 2003 at 05:33 AM.
    Turman found a copy of The Graduate, and thought highly enough of the story that he made a movie he considered to be 90-percent faithful to the book.

    But Turman and director Mike Nichols made one key adaptation, changing the Braddocks from WASP-y blonde characters into a dark-haired, more ethnic-looking family.

    From NPR's Present at the Creation

    http://www.npr.org/programs/morning/features/patc/graduate/

    http://www.norcalmovies.com/TheGraduate/tg11.jpg

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    Senior Member Gladstone's Avatar
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    In 1937 George Orwell had gone to Spain to fight on the side of the Republic with the force from the United Marxist Workers' Party (POUM). Later after returning to England he wrote

    "I saw history being written not in terms of what happened but of what ought to have happened, according to the party; this kind of thing is frightening to me. If a leader says of such-and-such an event that it never happened- well, it never happened. If he says that two and two are five- well, two and two are five."

    It was his observations in Spain in part that drove Orwell to write "1984"as a warning to us.

    When one considers that the Marxism of the 1930's and 40's morphed into the New Left of the 60's, which in turn morphed into "political correctness", and that Orwell's warning spoke of "thought crime" and we have something now known as "hate crime" developed by the "pc" folks; perhaps it is time to revisit Orwell's book. This is a link to "1984" on line

    http://www.thebirdman.org/Index/Temp...ine-JamesB.htm

    Be sure and read the fascinating introduction.
    Turman found a copy of The Graduate, and thought highly enough of the story that he made a movie he considered to be 90-percent faithful to the book.

    But Turman and director Mike Nichols made one key adaptation, changing the Braddocks from WASP-y blonde characters into a dark-haired, more ethnic-looking family.

    From NPR's Present at the Creation

    http://www.npr.org/programs/morning/features/patc/graduate/

    http://www.norcalmovies.com/TheGraduate/tg11.jpg

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