Breaker Morant

( 8 )

Overview

Breaker Morant is one of the most acclaimed Australian films, telling a powerful tale of wartime betrayal and injustice. Henry "Breaker" Morant Edward Woodward is an Englishman living in Australia at the end of the 19th century. When war breaks out in 1899 between Britain and the Boers descendants of Dutch colonists, Morant and a number of Australians volunteer for duty and are absorbed into the non-regular units of the British army. Acting under orders from his commanders, Morant oversees the execution of ...
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Overview

Breaker Morant is one of the most acclaimed Australian films, telling a powerful tale of wartime betrayal and injustice. Henry "Breaker" Morant Edward Woodward is an Englishman living in Australia at the end of the 19th century. When war breaks out in 1899 between Britain and the Boers descendants of Dutch colonists, Morant and a number of Australians volunteer for duty and are absorbed into the non-regular units of the British army. Acting under orders from his commanders, Morant oversees the execution of several Boer prisoners; it turns out that one of them was German, and in order to keep the peace with Germany, Britain agrees to courtmartial Morant and two other soldiers, sentencing two to death and one to life imprisonment. Based on a play by Kenneth Ross, Bruce Beresford's film is powerfully filmed and acted and has become a classic anti-war movie since its 1980 release; the script co-written by Beresford was nominated for an Academy Award. The final execution scene is nearly overpowering in its sense of tragedy and futility.
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Special Features

New high definition transfer; Documentary: The Boer War; Original 30-second radio spot
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
The film that gave director Bruce Beresford international recognition, Breaker Morant is one of the most acclaimed films ever to come out of Australia. A blunt, unsentimental account of one of the occasions on which Britain used and abused its Australian soldiers, it brilliantly depicts the betrayal, rage, and hypocrisy that characterized both the soldiers' trial and the nature of Australian-British military relations. To that end, Breaker works as a kind of belated expose; like Gallipoli a year later, it brought decades-old wrongdoings to light for the benefit of a modern audience. Thanks to Beresford's excellent direction, however, the film avoids the trap of self-righteous moralizing that often accompanies such biased storytelling. In fact, as rooted as it is in the tradition of military drama, Breaker Morant is as much a compelling character study. What really grabs the viewer is not so much the injustice at hand -- that's a given -- as the ways it is dealt with by the men upon whom it is inflicted. As the titular Morant, Edward Woodward displays both dignity and soft-spoken rage, while Bryan Brown communicates hot-tempered defiance as Handcock and Lewis Fitz-Gerald is terrifically naive as Witten, the youngest of the three court-martialed men. Jack Thompson is also memorable as the country lawyer who defends the men. These actors' performances are what make the film so affecting, giving the story both humanity and terrible sadness. Unlike the injustice portrayed in Breaker Morant, the sympathy we feel for its victims is not a given; instead, it is earned.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/15/2008
  • UPC: 014381473650
  • Original Release: 1980
  • Rating:

  • Source: Image Entertainment
  • Time: 1:47:00
  • Format: Blu-ray

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Edward Woodward Lt. Harry Morant
Bryan Brown Lt. Peter Hancock
Lewis Fitz-Gerald Lt. George Witton
Jack Thompson Major J.F. Thomas
John Waters Capt. Alfred Taylor
Rod Mullinar Major Charles Bolton
Charles "Bud" Tingwell Lieutenant Colonel Denny
Terence Donovan Capt. Simon Hurst
Vincent Ball Lt. Ian Hamilton
Frank Wilson Dr.Johnson
Alan Cassell Lord Kitchener
Russell Kiefel Christian Botha
Judy Dick Mrs. Shields
Wayne Bell Lieutenant Reed
Ian Gray B/M Thomas
Chris Haywood Sentry
Dick Henderson Captain Nicholson
Dick Henderson Captain Nicholson
Alan Lovett Scots Sentry
Ray Meagher Sgt Major Drummond
Rob Steele Captain Robertson
Barbara West Mrs. Vanderberg
Technical Credits
Bruce Beresford Director, Screenwriter
William M. Anderson Editor
Matt Carroll Producer
David Copping Art Director
Phil Cunneen Score Composer
Mont Fieguth Special Effects
John Hardy Screenwriter
Jonathan Hardy Screenwriter
Heath Harris Stunts
Judy Lovell Makeup
Donald M. McAlpine Cinematographer
Chris Murray Special Effects
Anna Senior Costumes/Costume Designer
Tony Smart Stunts
Greg Smith Stunts
David Stevens Screenwriter
Pamela Vanneck Production Manager
Gary Wilkins Sound/Sound Designer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 8 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(8)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great film

    This is a great movie about the British military and its policies during WWI.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Life's diminishing value...

    This was an excellent movie. I was shocked to hear it was popular with anti-war groups, since it is often used in the military to promote dicussions and dialouge about moral and ethical decision making for young leaders. It tells a story that few, who have not been in combat, can understand the diminishing value of human life as violence and death are seen far too often. One's morals and values are very susceptible to change when the daily situation has dramatically changed and their is no anchor to the life one led outside of the combat zone. It's a tragic story of the few being sacrificed to end an endless war. And it was based on a book written by the only one of the three not executed entitled "Scapegoats of the Empire".

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Don't forget the cinematography

    I couldn't agree more with what's already been said here. A great movie, great acting, great script and - what no one has yet mentioned - great cinematography. The visuals are just fabulous. One of the best war movies ever made, but not just a war movie. It transcends the genre. Everyone should see it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Soldiers' Dilema

    An outstanding movie, well served by time. It tells the timeless story of soldiers carrying out the orders of their superiors, but who are then used as scapegoats when the the policies of their superiors fall from favor. The parallels to Vietnam made this film particularly poignant when it was first released.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A Great Movie

    This is a movie for anyone interested in war and/or history. It is the best movie in the last thirty years.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Peerless Court Martial Drama

    This movie is a historical drama that epitomizes the arrogance of the British military aristocracy. Never have I seen a more splendid adaptation of ''British justice''. The Boer War is historically depicted for all to see. A fantastic effort and must see!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The standard for all war and trial films.

    To have seen this film is to have experienced one of the great masterpieces in film making of the last 30 years.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews