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Sybil
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Sybil

4.6 6
Director: Daniel Petrie Sr.

Cast: Sally Field, Joanne Woodward, Martine Bartlett

 
The multiple award-winning made-for-TV movie Sybil was based on the book by Flora Rheta Schreiber. Sally Field won an Emmy for her portrayal of the title character, a substitute teacher in New York who has developed multiple personality disorder. As a coping mechanism to deal with the abuse she suffered at the hands of her mother, Hattie (Martine Bartlett),

Overview

The multiple award-winning made-for-TV movie Sybil was based on the book by Flora Rheta Schreiber. Sally Field won an Emmy for her portrayal of the title character, a substitute teacher in New York who has developed multiple personality disorder. As a coping mechanism to deal with the abuse she suffered at the hands of her mother, Hattie (Martine Bartlett), Sybil created separate personalities: aggressive Peggy Lou, suicidal Mary, baby Sybil Ann, and several others. Joanne Woodward plays Dr. Cornelia Wilbur, the psychologist who diagnoses Sybil's condition and helps her to get over it. William Prince and Jane Hoffman play her father and stepmother, while Brad Davis appears as her would-be boyfriend Richard. Originally shown in 1976 as a two-part special on NBC for a total of almost four hours, but most home video versions have been edited down to two hours.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Donald Liebenson
With her revelatory performance as Sybil Dorsett, a woman with 16 personalities, 30-year-old “TV” actress Sally Field bade a definitive goodbye to her days as Gidget and The Flying Nun, and set herself on course for big-screen stardom. Made for television in 1976, Sybil is based on Flora Rheta Schreiber's celebrated book about a withdrawn substitute teacher whose periodic blackouts compel her to seek professional help. Joanne Woodward, who won an Academy Award for portraying a woman with multiple personalities in The Three Faces of Eve, costars as the compassionate Dr. Cornelia Wilbur, who helps Sybil come to terms with repressed memories of childhood horrors inflicted by an exceedingly cruel and abusive mother. Sybil is a benchmark work, presented on home video for the first time in its original broadcast length of 198 minutes. Director Daniel Petrie (A Raisin in the Sun) and screenwriter Stewart Stern (Rebel Without a Cause) took great care in elevating Sybil’s story from exploitive disease-of-the-week fare into a redemptive story of healing. And Field, indelibly portraying a staggering emotional range, from infantile and painfully shy to poised and sophisticated, is a marvel to watch -- as is Natasha Ryan, who portrays Sybil as a child. “Examining Sybil,” a bonus featurette, recalls what an unlikely and risky casting choice Field was. Woodward recalls asking at the time, “The Flying Nun is coming in to read for this?” After this film, though, Field’s Oscar-winning triumphs in Norma Rae and Places in the Heart came as little shock. What’s not to like, really like?

Product Details

Release Date:
07/18/2006
UPC:
0012569701458
Original Release:
1976
Rating:
NR
Source:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
1
Time:
3:07:00
Sales rank:
834

Special Features

Closed Caption; Retospective documentary: Examining Sybil; Sybil theraby session; The Paintings of Sybil

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Sybil: Feature Movie
1. Substitute [7:01]
2. Sharp Chords [6:16]
3. Losing Time [9:21]
4. Daddy's Girls [4:52]
5. Bad Dream [3:28]
6. Wakeup Call [1:20]
7. On the Edge [8:26]
8. Mentor's Advice [2:15]
9. Horse Ride [4:44]
10. French Lady [5:04]
11. Many Children [5:45]
12. Marcia's Drawings [2:47]
13. Smiling Gentlemen [4:36]
14. Artists in Love [5:05]
15. Performance Anxiety [6:33]
16. Danny the Dancer [3:03]
17. Revealing Recital [9:11]
18. Christmas Fear [6:15]
19. Memory of Grandma [7:46]
20. Crayons and Cruelty [4:38]
21. Safe and Protected [8:32]
22. Adult Situation [4:57]
23. Cast Dream [4:05]
24. Richard's Test [3:21]
25. Abandonment Issues [11:31]
26. Troubled Past [6:58]
27. "Aches and Pains." [5:00]
28. Familiar Place [3:57]
29. "Being With People." [4:02]
30. Green Kitchen [9:11]
31. Meeting the Others [7:34]
32. End Credits [7:59]
Disc #2 -- Sybil: Bonus Features
1. The Paintings of Sybil

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Sybil 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had to watch this in my Psychology class, meaning everyone thought it would be horrible, and boring...WRONG! I don't think any of us were expecting it to be such a great movie! I love it! It is so amazing to watch Sally Field act in this movie, and more amazing to realize what her character went through in real life. I highly recommend this movie to anyone! It is awesome! I have seen it 3 times, and I'm still not bored with it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie is absolutely incredible. The acting is unbelievable, especially that of Sally Field. Phenominal. It gets to you emotionally and there are times when you must cry...cry for what Sybil has survived. How a mother can be so cruel is beyond me, but how a young woman can turn out to not be insane is even further beyond my understanding. Top notch film, definitely one worth watching and a great one to discuss with those you love and trust.
AzSueL More than 1 year ago
This true story illustrates the unbelievable cruelty of a very sick mother, while the father remains oblivious to what is happening in front of his face. For example, he believes his wife when she tells him their then-4-year-old daughter broke her larynx by running into a clothesline (which would have been strung more than twice as high as Sybil was tall). It also shows the lengths the human mind will go to preserve its own sanity under extreme conditions. Outstanding portrayal of the many "selves" by Sally Field, while Joanne Woodward, who played the part of a woman with a split personality in "The Three Faces of Eve" (another true story), did an excellent job as the caring psychiatrist who worked with Sybil to make her whole.
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