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John Hurt as Winston Smith in 1984 film version of 1984

It speaks volumes about the tenor of the times that several classic novels about totalitarian dystopias have shot to the top of the best-seller list and hovered there since Election Day: Animal Farm, Brave New World, The Handmaid’s Tale, Lord of the Flies…and of course George Orwell’s dark masterpiece, 1984. On April 4 – honoring the date on which Orwell’s protagonist Winston Smith begins rebelling against his government by keeping a forbidden diary – dozens of movie theaters, libraries, museums and bookstores across the country will participate in a national screening event, presenting Michael Radford’s film adaptation of 1984, made in 1984. John Hurt, Richard Burton, Suzanna Hamilton and Cyril Cusack star.

Upstate Films in Rhinebeck will join the national screening by presenting the classic movie at 8:15 p.m. and Rosendale Theatre will screen it at 7:15 p.m., Tuesday, April 4.


A second screening of 1984, scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 9, will be offered at the Rhinebeck theater as part of the ongoing “Fiction into Film” discussion series sponsored by Oblong Books. A book group discussion will follow; to sign up for the group, visit

Ticket prices for both screenings are $10 general admission, $8 for seniors and students and $6 for Upstate Films members. To order, call (845) 876-2515 or visit Upstate Films is located at 6415 Montgomery Street (Route 9) in Rhinebeck.