The movie by Peter Shaffer, Amadeus, is about Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s life. The main characters in the movie, Mozart, Antonio Salieri, and Emperor Joseph are factual characters. The movie is filmed to portray the point of view that Antonio Salieri had of Mozart. Salieri was a music lover but not a very good composer. He was very envious of Mozart’s musical work, and he did not particularly like Mozart. Mozart was a genius composer and Salieri was not able to compose music as perfectly. The movie is about Mozart, but it is played out through the eyes of Salieri. Salieri is in an insane asylum, because he believes he is, in some way, responsible for the death of Mozart and is being haunted by his own guilt. The movie goes back in time to a period thought to have been the time of Mozart. However, the film never really confirms that actual time of the setting.
Although I knew the outcome of the movie beforehand, I was still extremely sad at the end during the death scene. I think something that particularly made me sad was that Salieri was so jealous of Mozart that he was willing to do anything to have the upper hand. He was angry with God for giving Mozart a vast amount of musical talent even though he wasn’t a well-behaved person and was very flirtatious with women. In particular, in the film, Mozart had a romance with Katarina Cavalieri, when in fact Salieri slept with Cavalieri. In the film, Salieri vowed to lead a life of chastity with complete devotion to God in order to have a shot of making it musically. The strange thing was that although Salieri was completely envious of Mozart, he loved his music so much. In one part of the movie where they are talking about the unsuccessfulness of Don Giovanni, Salieri mentioned that although the opera was only performed a certain number of times, he attended every single show because of the magical qualities the music contained. Even when Mozart was in a slump during his life and musical career, Salieri still admired him and went to every show he had. In the film, Mozart states that Christopher Gluck was boring and that he did not like Jacques Hardel. In fact, there were two of Mozart’s favorite composers.
The film states that Mozart wrote his first symphony at age four, when in reality, he wrote his first symphony at age eight. Factually, after Mozart found out his father died, he started to write an opera, which was an allusion to his father’s death. At one point in the movie he was extremely drunk and working on this piece, because the ghost man in the mask was offering to pay him money to finish it. He would always get drunk while working on this piece. His wife told him he needed to stop drinking, because he had to finish it in order to get paid. He then confessed to her that writing this piece of work was killing him, and that he could not do it anymore. I found it very interesting that Mozart died while completing this piece of music. Although the part of him dying while completing Requiem is historically accurate, Salieri was not there helping him work on it.
Before watching this film, I perceived Mozart as a very prestigious composer. He was very famous a young child and did not know how to manage his money while at the same time had issues with his father. It is such a shame that he died in such horrible conditions and at a young age. But, despite all that, Mozart is still considered one of the best composers to this day.
died in such horrible conditions and at a young age. But, despite all that, Mozart is still considered one of the best composers to this day.