Brazil

( 24 )

Overview

Brazil constitutes Terry Gilliam's enormously ambitious follow-up to his 1981 Time Bandits. It also represents the second installment in a trilogy of Gilliam films on imagination versus reality, that began with Bandits and ended in 1989 with The Adventures of Baron Munchausen. To create this wild, visually audacious satire, Gilliam combines dystopian elements from Orwell, Huxley and Kafka plus a central character who mirrors Walter Mitty with his own trademark, Monty Python-esque, jet black British humor and his ...
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Overview

Brazil constitutes Terry Gilliam's enormously ambitious follow-up to his 1981 Time Bandits. It also represents the second installment in a trilogy of Gilliam films on imagination versus reality, that began with Bandits and ended in 1989 with The Adventures of Baron Munchausen. To create this wild, visually audacious satire, Gilliam combines dystopian elements from Orwell, Huxley and Kafka plus a central character who mirrors Walter Mitty with his own trademark, Monty Python-esque, jet black British humor and his gift for extraordinary visual invention. The results are thoroughly unprecedented in the cinema. Jonathan Pryce stars as Sam Lowry, a civil servant who chooses to blind himself to the decaying, drone-like world around him. It's a world marred by oppressive automatization and towering bureaucracy, and populated by tyrannical guards who strongarm lawbreakers. And Lowry is stuck in the middle of this nightmare. Whenever real life becomes too oppressive, Sam fantasizes to the tune of Ary Baroso's 1930s hit "Brazil" about sailing through the clouds as a winged superhero, and rescuing beautiful Jill Layton Kim Greist from a giant, Samurai warrior. The omnipresent computer that controls everything in the "real" world malfunctions, causing an innocent citizen to be arrested and tortured to death. When Sam routinely investigates the error, he meets - and pursues Jill , literally the girl of his dreams. But in real life, she's a tough-as-nails truck driver who initially wants nothing to do with him. It turns out that she is suspected of underground activities, in connection with a terrorist network wanted for bombing public places. The price Sam pays for his association with her is a close encounter with the man in charge of torturing troublesome citizens Michael Palin. He is rescued - at the last minute - by maintenance man Harry Tuttle Robert de Niro who moonlights as a terrorist, but that only represents the beginning of his plight, for now the "system" is onto him. Gilliam ran into enormous problems with Brazil. Universal - which produced the picture - originally slated it for release in 1984, but the studio - intimidated by the film's whopping length of 142 minutes - demanded that Gilliam trim the film to bring it in under two hours and alter the pessimistic ending. Gilliam refused; Universal shelved the picture for a year. In response, the director took out a full page ad in Variety asking studio president Sid Sheinberg when the film would be released. Sensing tremendous pressure, Universal bowed to Gilliam's insistence on fewer cuts but still demanded a happy ending. Gilliam trimmed only eleven minutes and altered the conclusion just slightly instead of cutting to black, it fades into puffy white clouds on a blue sky, with a reprise of the title tune. It was thus released in early 1985 at 131 minutes, and of course became a seminal work; many critics regarded it at the time as the best film of the eighties.
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Special Features

All new, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Terry Gilliam, with a remastered Dolby stereo surround soundtrack; Audio commentary by Gilliam; Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing; Plus: An essay by Jack Mathews
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Director Terry Gilliam's comic fantasy-nightmare portrays a future in which Big Brother is definitely watching. The film suggests no particular time, boasting a retro style that gives it an ominous timelessness. Like Ridley Scott's Blade Runner or Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange, Brazil succeeds precisely because it presents a grimy future with real similarities to the present, where technology and efficiency lead to more, not less, government interference and bureaucracy. Brazil also adds an element of comedy to the mix; some of the zaniest scenes involve Robert DeNiro, playing against type as the hilarious terrorist Harry Tuttle. Visually, the film is a near-psychedelic wonder, with such indelible images as the bleak metropolis that launches from the ground, disrupting the idyllic dreams of unlikely hero Sam Lowry (Jonathan Pryce). To say Gilliam pulled out all the stops is an understatement -- it seems that every image that popped into his head has found its way into the film. Brazil was criticized by some for going too far, and this lack of restraint does extend to the sometimes hard-to-follow plot. But a little incoherence is a relatively small price to pay for what is otherwise a startlingly imaginative work.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/5/2006
  • UPC: 715515018128
  • Original Release: 1985
  • Rating:

  • Source: Criterion
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Time: 2:22:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 22,219

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Jonathan Pryce Sam Lowry
Michael Palin Jack Lint
Kim Greist Jill Layton
Robert De Niro Harry Tuttle
Katherine Helmond Ida Lowrey
Ian Holm Kurtzman
Ian Richardson Warren
Peter Vaughan Helpmann
Bob Hoskins Spoor
Derrick O'Connor Dowser
Charles McKeown Lime
Barbara Hicks Mrs. Terrian
Kathryn Pogson Shirley
Jim Broadbent Dr. Jaffe
Jack Purvis Dr. Chapman
Bryan Pringle Spiro
Sheila Reid Mrs. Buttle
Roger Ashton-Griffiths Priest
Anthony G. Brown Porter, Information Retrieval
Patrick Connor Cell Guard
Ray Cooper Technician
Sadie Corré Midget Woman
Derek Deadman Bill, Department of Works
Winston Dennis Samurai Warrior
Myrtle Devenish Typist in Jack's Office
John Flanagan TV Interviewer/Salesman
Terry Forrestal Burning Trooper
Holly Gilliam Holly
Don Henderson 1st Black Maria Guard
John Pierce Jones Basement Guard
Simon Jones Arrest Official
Gorden Kaye M.O.I. Lobby Porter
Howard Lew Lewis 2nd Black Maria Guard
Diana Martin Telegram Girl
Brian Miller Mr. Buttle
Simon Nash Boy Buttle
Prudence Oliver Girl Buttle
Nigel Planer Charlie, Department of Works
Tony Portacio Neighbor in Clerk's Pool
Oscar Quitak Interview Official
Elizabeth Spender Alison/Barbara Lint
Ann Way Old Lady with Dog
Technical Credits
Terry Gilliam Director, Screenwriter
James Acheson Costumes/Costume Designer
John Beard Art Director
Patrick Cassavetti Co-producer
Richard Conway Special Effects
Julian Doyle Editor
Graham Ford Production Manager
Norman Garwood Production Designer
George Gibbs Special Effects
Frank Gill Jr. Screenwriter
Joseph P. Grace Associate Producer
Maggie Gray Set Decoration/Design
Michael Kamen Score Composer
Laura Kerr Screenwriter
Irene Lamb Casting
Charles McKeown Screenwriter
Arnon Milchan Producer
Robert North Producer
Keith Pain Art Director
Roger Pratt Cinematographer
Walter Scharf Score Composer
Aaron Sherman Makeup
Tom Stoppard Screenwriter
Tip Tipping Stunts
Bill Weston Stunts
Maggie Weston Makeup
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Criterion Collection: Brazil
1. Logos [:28]
2. 8:49 p.m., Somewhere in the Twentieth Century [3:18]
3. "That is Your Receipt for Your Husband" [3:43]
4. Department of Records [2:32]
5. Dreams and Reality [2:29]
6. The Truth Shall Make You Free; "I Want to Report a Wrongful Arrest" [3:16]
7. Suspicion Breeds Confidence; Mother Pulling Strings [2:43]
8. Bon Appétit! [5:22]
9. "Thank You for Calling Central Services..." [2:24]
10. "Harry Tuttle, Heating Engineer, at Your Service" [4:29]
11. 27B-6 [3:43]
12. Buttle's Refund Check [5:24]
13. Happiness, We're All in It Together [7:32]
14. "I Don't Know What I Want" [4:27]
15. "You've 'ad That Scab Tuttle in 'ere, Ain'tcha?" [1:58]
16. Samurai Battle [3:31]
17. An Invitation From Mother [1:33]
18. "Snip, Snip, Slice, Slice" [4:30]
19. "'Ere I am, J.H." [2:22]
20. Information Retrieval [3:52]
21. DZ-015, the New Boy Next Door [5:44]
22. Who Can You Trust? Freelance Subversion [6:22]
23. Lift out of Order [4:44]
24. "I've Been Dreaming About You" [5:08]
25. No Sense of Reality [5:48]
26. Romantic Lingerie [4:00]
27. "An Empty Desk is an Efficient Desk" [5:27]
28. Unnecessary Repairs [3:57]
29. Rescuing Jill [6:37]
30. "Care for a Little Necrophilia?" [3:45]
31. Wasting Ministry Time and Paper [3:47]
32. "Don't Fight It, Son" [6:29]
33. Keep Your City Tidy [2:08]
34. "Mr. Lowry, So Pleased You Could Make It" [5:27]
35. End Credits [4:01]
36. Color Bars [:01]
1. Welcome [:28]
2. "Why is It Called Brazil?" [3:18]
3. The Buttle House [3:43]
4. Favorite Tracking Shot [2:32]
5. The Flying Sequence [2:29]
6. The Ministry Set [3:16]
7. Researching Brazil [2:43]
8. Shoe Hats and Food Pictures [5:22]
9. An Elaborate Labyrinth [2:24]
10. De Niro's Bit Part [4:29]
11. Tweedledee and Tweedledum [3:43]
12. Billing People for Their Torture [5:24]
13. A Turning Point [7:32]
14. "Two Halves of a Whole Personality" [4:27]
15. "Inefficiency Masquerading as Order" [1:58]
16. Sam's Dreams [3:31]
17. Pure Silliness and Going Too Far [1:33]
18. Logic and Mood [4:30]
19. Mr. Helpmann: The Crippled Leader [2:22]
20. The World of Shadows [3:52]
21. Office Workers Love This Movie [5:44]
22. The Corridor Upstairs [6:22]
23. Ray Cooper and Michael Kamen [4:44]
24. The Sam Lowry Character [5:08]
25. Rubber Suits and Model Shots [5:48]
26. "My Original Idea for the Film..." [4:00]
27. Talking Evil With George Lucas [5:27]
28. Invasion of Sam's Flat [3:57]
29. Gilliam's Background [6:37]
30. The Trick to Filmmaking [3:45]
31. Two Deleted Scenes [3:47]
32. Shooting in the Water Tower [6:29]
33. The Shopping Center [2:08]
34. The Felliniesque Funeral [5:27]
35. American and European Endings [4:01]
36. Color Bars [:01]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- The Criterion Collection: Brazil
   Play the Movie
   Chapters
   Commentary
      Commentary: Off
      Commentary: On
      Index
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 24 )
Rating Distribution

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(21)

4 Star

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3 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 24 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    A Delightful Dystopia

    The bureaucracy has won. People's everyday lives are overrun with paperwork, interrogations, and miles of red tape, all in an effort to keep people safe from "the terrorists". It's a delightful film with excellent A-list actors, and I highly recommend it for fans of dystopian films.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great black comedy.

    Really, really a great movie. Highly recommended, but if you don't like this type of satirical humor, you may become bored. I won't ruin anything for you, buy this movie tonight and watch it twice.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    My mind will never be the same. And I'm loving it.

    This movie, with its brilliant perplexity, is bound to be kept out of the mainstream and deemed ''boring'' by some who see it. Indeed movies are boring when they are far too complex to comprehend. Most people prefer the standard formula for action movies that has been done a million times before. Most people desire to step into a movie theater and see some car chases, sex scenes, and crude aphorisms that they would consider to be humor. Then there are people like me, who love seeing things that stimulate the mind. What I value in a movie is the thought put into its script and its direction. Certainly one of the most thoughtful directors in this respect is Terry Gilliam. His name under this movie's title is what drew me in, since I loved 12 Monkeys and I'm a huge Monty Python fan. The plot of Brazil is enough to make your mind explode, and then understanding all the tiny subplots surrounding the main idea behind storyline is enough to change you forever. As the creepily lighthearted musical score pierced my ears as the movie faded into credits, I knew I would never be able to think the same way again. Terry Gilliam has really done it this time. See this movie. I don't care how you do it. You can't let another second of your life slip by without having this movie's message in your head.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Whoa...

    Although this title is totally uncharacteristic of anything Terry Gilliam has ever done, it is a truly enjoyable title. The world Gilliam creates is a nightmarish place, akin to ''Airstrip One'' from Orwell's 1984, where life is cheap and freedom is a vague hope. My only complaint is that Gilliam goes too far over the top, and too often.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    12 Monkeys meets 1984

    The bigger, badder brothers of the Rube Goldberg machines from 12 Monkeys dominate the "real life" visuals of Brazil. But, the fantasy sequences are stunning with heroic images in the style of the early Soviet and Nazi propaganda movies with fantastic Art Deco sets. The characters and the story line give an unsettling mix of slapstick comedy, dark cynicism, and (maybe) flamboyant individualism defying the impersonal grinding of the state. How dark? In one scene waiters set up screens to separate a table of diners (who continue to eat and talk) from the bloody victims of a terrorist bomb that goes off in the other half of the restaurant. This movie is a beautiful, offbeat retelling of 1984. But make no mistake, the story at the heart of this movie is the same story at the heart of Orwell's 1984. It does NOT have a happy ending. It does raise questions that are worth your time and thought. Finally, if you are a fan of Terry Gilliam, then this movie must be in your collection.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Among the best movies ever made.

    This wild and dark look at the inhumanity of the modern condition makes laughter and tears flow together in a psychotic yet prescient look at the world of 1984 and the future present. This movie represents the best type of entertainment, because it amuses while causing one to look inward. It is among the greatest motion pictures made.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    visually stunning

    gilliam combines the totalitarianism of orwell's 1984 and the distorted reality from kafka novels and creates this cinematic masterpiece. fans of surrealism and dark comedy will enjoy this.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2013

    Totally wasteful. And I know totalitarianism, I was born in the

    Totally wasteful. And I know totalitarianism, I was born in the country that defined it. His satire has no teeth, all he shows is a panopticum of ridiculous personalities with trivial and predictable actions. This is no “1984”, folks. The director is desperately trying to either be cute or supersmart. Well, he is neither. Gilliam is full of himself; just watch his interview, in which he is bragging about deceiving studios that provided financing for his project.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 26, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    3 disk set is an invaluable education

    The three-disk set of Brazil provides an invaluable education on what can (and often does) happen to a director's move once the "suits" get a hold of it. The Directors cut is wonderful. Brazil is far from being a great movie but it is such an interesting one that I have watched it many times over and it becomes more of a delight with every viewing. The studio cut of the film (the so-called 'love concurs all' cut) is interesting to watch. The studios attempt to give the film a happy ending only results in some rather inexplicable behavior from the characters when seen outside of the director's intention. However, it also shows that Brazil might have been a better movie if Gilliam had planned a happy ending to begin with, instead of one he gave us. Yet, having made the movie he intended to make, it proves once again that the "suits" have to keep their hands off the finished product. As the old silent movie director, Eric Von Stroheim, once said, "The man who cut my film had nothing on his mind but a hat". However, for those who want to understand the inner workings of a Director/Studio fight over a film, the third disk is a wonder to behold. It has everybody's side of the fight over this film and is well worth the purchase of the three-disk set instead of merely the single disk of the directors cut.

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    Posted April 9, 2010

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    Posted October 17, 2008

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    Posted March 12, 2012

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    Posted January 1, 2009

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    Posted November 14, 2011

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    Posted July 19, 2009

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    Posted November 6, 2008

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    Posted August 13, 2011

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    Posted October 31, 2008

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    Posted July 6, 2011

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    Posted January 8, 2010

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 24 Customer Reviews