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Poster for From Book to Film: 1984 (1984)
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From Book to Film: 1984 (1984)

Opens on September 1

Director: Michael Radford Run Time: 110 min. Rating: R Release Year: 1984

Starring: Cyril Cusack, Gregor Fisher, John Hurt, Richard Burton, Suzanna Hamilton

Country: United Kingdom
Language: English

From Book to Film at Gateway Film Center

The essential summer film series returns with a new theme each month. September features stories from unbanned books. Visit Ticket Center beginning at noon the day of the screening to reserve your spot!

Admission is free with your library card. Don’t have a card? You can ​apply for one online.

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About the film:

This masterly adaptation of George Orwell’s chilling parable about totalitarian oppression gives harrowing cinematic expression to the book’s prophetic dystopia. The most frequently banned book in the United States to date, Orwell’s 1949 story was challenged for its social and political themes, as well as for sexual content.

In a rubble-strewn surveillance state where an endless overseas war props up the repressive regime of the all-seeing Big Brother, and all dissent is promptly squashed, a profoundly alienated citizen, Winston Smith (thrillingly played by John Hurt), risks everything for an illicit affair with the rebellious Julia (Suzanna Hamilton), defiantly asserting his humanity in the face of soul-crushing conformity.

Through vividly grim production design and expressionistically desaturated cinematography by Roger Deakins, Michael Radford’s 1984 conjures a bleak vision of postwar Britain as fascistic nightmare—a world all too recognizable. The film features legendary actor Richard Burton as the cynical Inner Party official O’Brien in his final film role.

About the filmmaker:

Michael Radford is an English film director and screenwriter. He has been nominated for five Academy awards, including Best Director and Best Screenwriter, and has won two BAFTA awards and over 60 other international prizes.

He began his career as a documentary director and television comedy writer before transitioning into features in the early 1980s. He has directed multiple acclaimed literary adaptations, including the film adaptation of George Orwell’s classic dystopian novel 1984, the Shakespeare adaptation The Merchant of Venice (2004), the true crime drama White Mischief (1987) based on James Fox’s non-fiction book, and the Academy Award nominated Il Postino: The Postman (1994) based on Antonio Skármeta’s inventive book – itself based on an earlier film by Skármeta – about Pablo Neruda befriending a postman. Radford studied Directing at the prestigious National Film and Television School in the United Kingdom.

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