Saturday, December 11, 2004
Mozart performing before Emperor Joseph II and his courtiers
Exposure to classical music and arthouse movies care of my big brother started me off to an early appreciation of culture that kids wouldn't normally be dabbling in. One of the early movies we watched over and over in betamax tapes was Peter Shaffer's wonderful Amadeus. It was really fun for us kids to watch Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as superbly portrayed by Tom Hulce) run off throughout different parts of his patrons' palace (in this case the Archbishop's) laughing and flirting with a girl then be suddenly aware that the concerto that he was supposed to lead has started off without him. He would then run off and with much poise enter the concert hall and take his cue as a conductor without so much as missing a beat. Or the time he played from memory the entire minuet that was composed as a welcome to the great composer before making some improvements on it. It was all so memorable for us that we even memorized snippets of dialogue from the film that we would recite in sync with the characters. That's why I'm so ecstatic I got the Director's cut on DVD! It's a good thing I waited and didn't acquire the original version when I had the chance some months ago. As an aside this movie garnered much of the coveted Oscar Awards including Best Movie, Best Actor (F. Murray Abraham), and Best Director (Milos Forman). Please also check out this wonderful fansite for this great film.