Director: Milos Forman
Cast: Tom Hulce, F. Murray Abraham, Roy Dotrice, Jeffrey Jones
Synopsis: Claiming to have murdered composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Tom Hulce), an elderly Antonio Salieri (F. Murray Abraham) recounts to a priest his interactions with the gifted composer. Salieri was court composer for Austrian Emperor Joseph II (Jeffrey Jones) when he and Mozart first meet. He is so excited to meet the supremely gifted Mozart who he expects to be a gentleman but instead is childish, arrogant and birlliant all at once leaving Salieri both in awe and green with envy. Salieri uses Mozart’s difficult relationship with his father (Roy Dotrice) and his guilt over being a bad son to drive him slightly mad and into a downward spiral of ill health, leading to his death.
Trivia: Entire film was shot with natural light. In order to get the proper diffusion of light for some scenes, the DPs covered windows from the outside with tracing paper. Originally, a very young Kenneth Branagh was cast as Mozart, but Milos Forman changed his mind and decided to go with American actors for the principal roles.
Why I think you should see this: The first time I saw this I was around 12 or 13 because it was on VHS and I loved this movie it was so well made and the music was amazing. Considering my favourite actor at the time was Arnold Schwarzenegger that is pretty impressive that I even liked this movie a little. Revisiting this film years later and I still really enjoy because it is a great film. F. Murray Abraham is amazing as Salieri and gets his revenge on Mozart for winning the best actor Oscar over Tom Hulce who is also amazing as Mozart. This might not be the most historically accurate portrayal of Mozart’s life but it is damn good cinema and comes highly recommended.