Regarded as a cautionary tale equal to the works of Orwell and Huxley, this a nightmare vision of a dystopian future where technology reigns supreme and love is forbidden. A daydreaming bureaucrat becomes the tragic victim of his own romantic illusions.
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Like Godard's Alphaville, the political aspects of the film have remained fiercely prophetic. An autocratic future state where people are simply statistics; a post-modern metropolis of wires & systems failing from the inside out; a world where the notion of terrorism is used as fear-mongering propaganda to satiate the masses, maintaining order through employed slavery, consumerism & dehumanisation. A powerful work.
To think that Brazil would not be the social and political statement it is today had it not been for the valiant efforts of Gilliam to protect his creation, works at two essential levels: thinking how many other masterpieces never saw the light of day; and art imitates life in what is a perfect metaphor for the film itself. About the piece little is left to say... it's the perfect visual aid to Orwell's work.
cinema made for dreaming, but still with self-conscience and depth. forget about the criminal stuff - it was a real turndown for me - this is about people dreaming they are in some place else, in dreams, struggling everyday to not notice reality. it is not a unique concept, but it is very well achieved, and aquarela do brasil fully creates the mood.
In a way, I am glad that I saw this when I was realatively new to (good) cinema. So this felt so alienish and strange and awkward and beautiful that I did apreciate it as much as I could, coming from a state of hunger for art and novelty. I had no way to classify it or understand its pace, atmosphere, references, humour. And I loved it, for creating such a lovely disconfort inside. Dystopian superb weirdness genius!
Brilliant. A dystopia satire by Mr. Gilliam couldn't go wrong. Its absurdity, criticism and visuals (like Blade Runner, a delicious mix of noir and futuristic films) were such a please to see. Did anyone else notice the reference to the Odessa steps sequence from Eisenstein’s Battleship Potemkin? I found it better and less obvious than the one in de Palma's Untouchables.
A wonderful satire of bureaucratic cancer, more relevant today than ever, given the propensity of my current government to absorb once independent industries and install their ductwork into every facet.
It's the best "Kafka" film not based (entirely at least, there is, of course, a definite influence) on a Kafka story. If this was Gilliam's ONLY film, he would still be one of the most visionary filmmakers of the 20th Century. In fact, this is the only film in Gilliam's filmography that I would say is perfect. Banal? Boring? Well, for me, it works like a charm.