This movie takes us back to 1984, a time when computers were still mysterious machines which inspired notions of science fiction in the minds of average persons.I was only 12 years old when I first saw this movie on HBO back in 1984 5? . This movie really captured my imagination. Computers fascinated me and "Electric Dreams" bolstered that fascination with a fluid plot, dazzling special effects, and a captivating soundtrack. The music, in particular is so good, I could still sing/hum the tunes for years after first seeing the movie. My favorite has to be the "Duel" song <more>
between a cello and the computer. Wild, wacky, wonderful stuff!
Guaranteed to leave you smiling and feeling pure joy! (by hippiedj)
I remember back in the l970s I saw a TV film with Bill Bixby in which he had a computer that fell in love with his girlfriend and composed poems for Bixby to give to her. I thought that's what Electric Dreams was based on, but haven't heard anyone admit that's the way it came about. But anyway.....Electric Dreams is one of those films that even with some slightly dated technology in it circa 1984, and even for this film some of the technology is stuff most people don't have in their homes yet! the story and its effectiveness are timeless. It has a very strong European <more>
influence to it that I appreciated--director Steve Barron has a true flair for combining nice visuals and story without each element bogging the other down.Miles Lenny Von Dohlen buys a computer to help in his quest to design the perfect earthquake-proof brick. He spills a drink on the keyboard, giving it life in the form of the voice Edgar Bud Cort . In the meantime, cellist Madeline Virginial Madsen moves in upstairs and guess who starts to like Madeline a LOT?....Several elements make this a winner: The fact that the lead actors Lenny Von Dohlen and Virginia Madsen were cast relatively unknown actors then instead of flavor-of-the-month ones. Bud Cort was a brilliant choice for the voice of Edgar in the computer. The music was obviously lesser known to mainstream U.S. audiences but well loved in Europe. Culture Club was a bit established, but artists like Heaven 17, Jeff Lynne of ELO , Philip Oakey of Human League , P.P. Arnold, and Helen Terry gave the film a great atmosphere with original songs that still hold up quite well today yes, the soundtrack is available as an import on CD . I'm proud to say I have the 12" remixes of the songs "Together In Electric Dreams," "Now You're Mine," and "Video" as well as the soundtrack.You don't have to exclusively like romance stories to enjoy this film. It has a little of everything for everyone, and invites repeated viewings. It's charming, will make you laugh, and I dare you to not get a little teary-eyed when the phrase "I LOVE YOU ...ME" appears on the computer screen to the beautiful music piece "Madeline's Theme" from Giorgio Moroder.Two scenes in particular will have you feeling exhilarated--when Madeline and Edgar do a musical duet of a familiar classical piece, and the ending where the song "Together In Electric Dreams" is bringing everyone in the city of San Francisco to their feet dancing. It will give you a rather overwhelming feeling of joy, and a completely satisfying ending. Just make sure to view all the way through the credits, there's a little surprise after them!At the time this review was written, Electric Dreams is only on out-of-print VHS in the United States, but is available on a European region 2 DVD. MGM had been reissuing tons of films on DVD with no frills except mislabled releases like Swamp Thing--not PG but actually the European cut, and Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2--not actually R but the unrated cut and I plead with them that when this one is ever issued in the DVD format, that we are given some extras like an audio commentary and behind the scenes features. There must be some very wonderful stories to tell about this charming film and the loyal following it has. As the tagline on the original cover read, it's "The most unusual triangle in the history of love." If only more people could be brought together like this and fall in love, the world would be a brighter place!"Open up your eyes and you will see, love is love is everything to me..."
My first boyfriend took me out to this movie. The music is the best part. I still have the album on vinyl. I love most anything with the cello being a cellist myself. I was also really in to Boy George in the '80s. The story is really sweet too.
Atypical love triangle (by bobbooker)
A huge kick to hear the music of the 80s--all Giorgio Moroder electro-thump, with the likes of Boy George and Jeff Lynne, as well as classical bits, woven into this fun, occasionally darkly funny film.Although some may criticize the primitive computer effects, it's eerie to think of how prescient this movie was, having been made at the very dawn of the personal computer age. A computer that responds to voice commands; talks back to you; monitors the goings-on around your home? Imagine! Of course, the magic of a champagne bath may have had something to do with it. Don't try this at <more>
home.Lenny Von Dohlen and Bud Cort deliver fine performances, and the still-lovely Virginia Madsen will make your knees weak with her fresh beauty here.I just procured a DVD, and enjoyed it as much as I had remembered doing two decades ago. But, note that it's not available in a U.S. version. However, Asian and European imports can be found online.
I just caught this movie on the scifi channel. I thought it was very strange, yet interesting enough to keep me watching. I never thought I'd see a film that combines elements of love and computers the way this film does, but there it is -- very unique.
I hate the 1980s grew up then and hated them then, too . I hate synthpop. I hate when computers are portrayed in ridiculous ways in films. As a dude, I don't really do romance in cinema.There are many reasons I should despise this film. It is cloyingly precious, sentimental, saccharine, and safe.How irritating it is, then, that the only reaction I actually have to this film is warm fuzzies. I've seen it maybe a half dozen times, and will probably watch it a few more.The many detractors of this film that I have spoken to seem incapable of the necessary accommodations one must make for <more>
this film's refusal to care about its own believability. Critics tend to fixate, instead, on supposed plot holes this is a film about a computer that becomes self- aware when liquid is spilled into it, at which time it assumes the voice of Bud Cort, and falls in love with its owner's object of desire. Just sayin'. and the aggressive, relentless adorableness of everything, from America's most picturesque city San Francisco to Edgar's cartoony "facial expressions," to Virgina Madsen, whose prettiness here is nearly coma-inducing in its dreaminess.Critics of this film tend to hate this kind of thing, preferring instead to find themselves, at the completion of the films they say they like, naked and in a fetal position on their own bathroom floor, rocking back and forth and sobbing quietly.Like I'm the lame-o for liking this film but they're the sophisticated, dignified ones for kneeling in the mud in a rainstorm and crying out to the God who has abandoned them, which is the sort of state one finds oneself at the end of "serious" films like Dancer in the Dark or Requiem for a Dream.Lame-o it is. Snobs might try watching this as a postmodern commentary on the 1980s: the airy 80s-ness actually détournes itself HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE!? , thereby being so avant-garde you can barely even stand being in a room where the film was once shown, owing to your insufficient coolness. Discuss.Part of the thing about this film, of course, is how easy it is to develop a crush on the cello-playing, classy, girlfriendy Virginia Madsen, and as a tough wannabe manly teenager with weedy adolescent facial hair and a preference for films with machine guns and rivers of blood, going all googly over Virginia Madsen was not something high on my list to do at the time. You couldn't maintain your dignity with your friends if you said you liked this film, when they were all watching, you know, FACES OF DEATH and playing 5 Finger Filet with balisongs in the basement.Virginia, if you're out there, I'd totally bring you hot chocolate and animal crackers on a snowy day. I am man enough to say this now.After watching Ms. Madsen in Electric Dreams, the most intense fantasy I was capable of conjuring up was: we're sitting on the couch, Virginia and me, and we're watching Pete's Dragon, both of us in in matching cotton jammies with dinosaurs on them, and eating ice cream. At one point she turns to me and says, "Let's stay in our pajamas all day. And then I'll play the cello."OK I tried to go for broke I was a deeply hormonal 13 or 14 year old at the time , but that's as lusty as I could make it, no matter how hard I tried. The fantasy was no less satisfying. Something can be extrapolated from this about the film's virtues, as well.The soundtrack, on paper, is the embodiment of purest evil for me. This is pretty much the last soundtrack I'd ever buy, had I not first heard the music in the context of the film.If you have not heard the Phil Oakey title theme, I am warning you now: it will make you into a complete and total wuss. OK, men? Just. You know, we'll have some whiskey and go hunting and hare coursing tomorrow and belch and scratch ourselves. Tomorrow, though. Today, it's, you know. Though you're miles and miles away, I see you every day. I don't have to try. I just close my eyes.I'd hate myself if I wasn't enjoying myself too much to care.Other standouts are kill me now the Culture Club contribution, "The Dream," which accompanies a memorable animated montage, and two Jeff Lynne ELO songs. You won't soon forget the soundtrack, for better or worse you will probably love it - but you will not like loving it .All of these elements just work, even though they shouldn't, and much to my annoyance, I must grudgingly admit to this being quite possibly my favorite film from that year much like foodies deriding middle American vices like deep-fried Oreos, and then realizing, to their dismay, that they enjoy them . Mock me if you must. If I look a bit dazed, it isn't that I am ignoring your derision, but rather it is because Pete's Dragon is over and I'm putting Harold and Maude into the VCR while Virginia sits there in her pajamas, reading an article from the New Yorker about J.D. Salinger out loud to me.Where was I...Oh...I give this a 9 out of 10, because for all of the reasons I could give you why this film is a treacherous menace to all of my sensibilities and values, I just really love it.You should watch it, if you haven't.Quit being a sourpuss, critics. The Godard films you pretend to like are still in their plastic anyway and have a long shelf life. You've been "working up to them." You've got time to keep "working up to them."And they won't love you like Electric Dreams will. I bet even Lemmy Caution would agree.
Electric Dreams is a quirky '80's film that has remained one of my favorites from that decade. The story of a boy, a girl, and a computer trying to find the meaning of love could have easily been a ridiculously campy movie, but instead is played out with a lighthearted sincerity. Lenny Von Dolen's portrayal of architect Miles Harding is done well, conveying the feelings of insecurity and wonder of falling in love for the first time, and Virginia Madsen's performance as would-be girlfriend Madeline equally shines. The movie is shot more like a music video Director Steve Barron <more>
also worked on Michael Jackson's "Billie Jean" video , and while there have been plenty of films that have used similar "MTV-style" techniques in the '90's, this was an unpioneered format at the time, and it seems to work the best here. The set design is great, the scene pacing doesn't drag on, and the sentiment is in the right place so that viewers can laugh at the humorous parts and relate during the romantic scenes. The music soundtrack is also top-notch, with music from Culture Club, Jeff Lynne, Heaven 17 and Giorgio Moroder. The computer technology and the commercials set this movie firmly in the early '80's, which may make it seem a little dated, but the overall story still holds up well and is fun. Electric Dreams is an enjoyable romantic fantasy that a lot of people may have missed when it was first released even more so since the film seems to be out of print , but for those wanting to see something a little different, this may be what you've been looking for.
Steve Barron's "Electric Dreams" will almost certainly be one of the hardest movies to find, but if you can you should definitely check it out. It got released around the time when computers were starting to become part of everyone's lives, and it seems to be predicting just how much these devices would come to dominate our lives. Lenny Von Dohlen never heard of him until I saw this movie plays an architect who buys a computer to get better organized, but an unexpected event turns the thing into a sillier version of HAL...especially after the owner falls for his musician <more>
neighbor a young Virginia Madsen .At once piece of light entertainment and a look at relationships, this movie does it just right. Some scenes are probably just comic relief, like the concert, but the computer does teach the man a good lesson about life. You're bound to love what the computer does in the movie's last scene.All in all, a really fun movie. I can't believe that it's out of print while tons of boring movies get special edition DVDs. Definitely check it out if you can. Watch for a young Miriam Margolyes as a ticket taker.
As others, I saw this movie quite some time ago. I do still have a copy on video but would love to see it on DVD again. It's basically the story of boy meets girl with a computer that gets in the way. Keep in mind there really were not PC's back when this was made. So the computer Miles gets is pretty crude by today's standards. But that doesn't stop it from having a personality all it's own. The voice of the computer is very well done. The two lead actors are great as well. They seem to really have wonderful chemistry together. Virginia Madsen just glows in this movie and <more>
shows she was due for the stardom she has now achieved. Von Dolen is also good and I wish I could see him in more projects. I highly recommend this film to anyone that likes a nice sweet romantic movie!