The title of the movie should actually be "Salieri", because the whole movie is really about his jealousy of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and how Salieri was overshadowed musically by Mozart. In the beginning, Salieri makes a "deal" with God so He will make Salieri a musical genius, and Salieri believes he has been granted this gift until the day Mozart comes to Vienna. Salieri immediately becomes jealous that God has bestowed upon Mozart the power he himself worked so desperately to achieve. From that point on, Salieri becomes obsessed with conspiring against Mozart, at one point paying a maid to go to Mozart's place to spy while she is cleaning and report back to him. Eventually, though indirectly, Salieri kills Mozart.
The major theme in this movie is the jealousy of Salieri, and how it consumed his every waking thought. It is somewhat depressing because it also shows all the hard work of Salieri with no success and the ease of Mozart's ability when to him composing music is quite easy.
Though the plot is fairly realistic, it is not completely historically accurate. Mozart was even more rambunctious and childish than portrayed in the film, and the ending is dramatized for the "Hollywood effect." The acting though, is very well done. Director Milos Forman did a great job directing F. Murray Abraham (Salieri) and Tom Hulce (Mozart) to stardom. They make the two and half-hours of wigs, wigs, opera, and more wigs bearable. Together they bring the silver screen alive and take us from our era into that of Mozart very seamlessly.
The sets are amazing, with great attention to detail and depth. The scenes where the operas take place are very well set up, and they fit in nicely with the time period. The...