I have just finished watching 1984, with John Hurt and Richard Burton. It stuck fairly to the book, except for two major (for me) differences.

  1. At the end, Winston is not shot.
  2. When Winston and Julia meet after Room 101, each of them says “I told them about you”, which seems wishy-washy compared to the book’s “I betrayed you”, which goes so much further than telling someone something.

Does anyone know if these deviations from the book, especially the latter, were ever justified by the director or script writer?

  • 1
    He dreams he is shot, he's not actually shot (apparently) - quora.com/Was-Winston-Smith-killed-at-the-end-of-the-book-1984
    – Paulie_D
    Aug 6, 2018 at 12:04
  • 2
    Also - scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/12109/…
    – Paulie_D
    Aug 6, 2018 at 12:05
  • Upvote. That explains point 1) for me, as I had always taken the bullet to be literal, not allegorical Aug 6, 2018 at 12:16
  • 1
    I read 1984 a long time ago and never thought that Smith was killed at the end or wondered if he was. Of course I have no memory of the specific last 2 paragraphs except that Smith now loved Big Brother. Aug 6, 2018 at 22:24
  • Interesting to know that others interpreted it differently (+1) , when it seemed so clear to me. O'Brien had always thought said that they could not kill him until he truly loved Big Brother, so I naturally assumed that that was what had happened. From comments above, mothers have interpreted it differently. However, it was the watering down of "I betrayed you" that ruined the entire movie for me. Just one phrase, but it totally threw my entire appreciation of it :-( Aug 7, 2018 at 6:44


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