Nominated for 11 Academy Awards—the film won eight, including Best Picture, Best Actor (F. Murray Abraham), and Best Director—Miloš Forman’s (‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’) adaptation of Peter Shaffer’s play opens it up into an energetic and sumptuous spectacle anchored by riveting performances from Tom Hulce as the child-like (and childish) W.A. Mozart and, especially, F. Murray Abraham as the mediocre composer Salieri, whose jealousy of Mozart’s genius knows no bounds. If you haven’t seen it on the big screen, you are in for a delightful evening. That the film is also awash in Mozart’s sublime compositions is the icing on this delicious cake.
‘Miloš Forman's “Amadeus” is… a lavish movie about Mozart that dares to be anarchic and saucy, and yet still earns the importance of tragedy. This is Mozart as an eighteenth-century Bruce Springsteen, and yet (here is the genius of the movie) there is nothing cheap or unworthy about the approach… The film is constructed in wonderfully well-written and acted scenes—scenes so carefully constructed, unfolding with such delight, that they play as perfect compositions of words. Most of them will be unfamiliar to those who have seen Peter Shaffer's brooding play, on which this film is based; Shaffer and Forman have brought light, life, and laughter to the material, and it plays with grace and ease.’—Roger Ebert