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Australia [DVD] [2008]

252 customer reviews

Price: £2.74 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman, David Wenham, Bryan Brown, Jack Thompson
  • Directors: Baz Luhrmann
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Audio Description: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: 27 April 2009
  • Run Time: 165 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (252 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001QE1BEI
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,506 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Baz Luhrmann directs this sweeping historical epic set in northern Australia. Nicole Kidman stars as Lady Sarah Ashley, an English aristocrat who inherits a vast cattle ranch in the unforgiving Australian outback. When her land comes under threat from a takeover plot by English cattle barons, Sarah reluctantly teams up with a rough-edged drover (Hugh Jackman) to drive her 2,000 head of cattle hundreds of miles over some of the world's most desolate landscape. The pair then arrive in Darwin just in time to face the Japanese bombings that come only months after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.

From Amazon.co.uk

Watching the early reels of Australia, there's certainly no doubt who's in charge: this could only be a film by Baz Luhrmann, that wacky purveyor of all things over-the-top. In this old-fashioned, 165-minute hymn to his native continent, Luhrmann travels back to the late 1930s/early '40s, for a scenario that would not have been out of place at MGM in that era. Straightlaced Lady Sarah Ashley (Nicole Kidman) journeys Down Under and is put under the protection of--crikey--a rugged cattle driver known only as the Drover (Hugh Jackman). When the two are forced to team up (along with a motley crew of misfits) to take a herd of cattle through the hostile landscape, their way is challenged by the dastardly plans of the local beef baron (Bryan Brown) and his elaborately evil lieutenant (David Wenham). At some point you realize that this film's main commodity is not cattle, but corn: Luhrmann piles on the melodrama and the old-school climaxes with his usual frantic glee. Employing "When You Wish Upon a Star" and the Japanese air force to make his case is not beyond Luhrmann, and he reaches big here. Those with a taste for un-ironic silliness might just go for this stuff, but even fans of the Baz will have their patience tested by the broad comedy and the absence of discernable chemistry between Kidman and Jackman. Australia does manage to skewer the culture's prejudices against the Aboriginal people, but in this context such a victory comes across as rather tinny. --Robert Horton

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Nat Whilk on 3 Nov. 2012
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
It's 1939. Nicole Kidman is an English aristocrat whose nasty husband has just been murdered. She tries to take over the Australian cattle ranch that she has inherited from him. Hugh Jackman is a gruff local drover to whom she finds herself obliged to turn for help.

This movie was the first Blu-ray that I ever watched, and I certainly started with a cracker. I'm not usually a big fan of mainstream movies - fantasy and science fiction are more my cups of tea - but Australia is so extraordinarily good in so many different ways that I quickly fell in love with it.

Hugh Jackman - well, what can I say? I can't imagine how any movie star could be more charismatic. And Nicole Kidman is very nearly his equal. As for the plot of the film, it reminds me of a wonderful soup that my Mum used to make that used a bit of every ingredient in the kitchen - it's a pride-and-prejudice romance, a western, a murder mystery, a war movie, a comedy, a historical epic...And each of these different elements works. It leaves you feeling as richly satisfied as a movie possibly could, and wondering why movies this wholesome and entertaining are so very, very rare.

With the Blu-ray being as cheap as it is, this is a movie that you owe it to yourself to watch in high def. The cast and crew toiled in the desert to bring you the movie's spectacular landscapes, and you really should see every single pixel of them. Blu-ray also maximizes the spectacle of the Pearl Harbor-like war scenes, and makes the most of the soundtrack's rich mixture of music.

A disc for everyone with a heart.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on 25 Oct. 2011
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Clearly drawing its inspiration from forerunners like The Overlanders, The Sundowners and We of the Never Never, Baz Luhrmann's Australia desperately wants to be the great Australian epic but has to settle for a fairly decent cattle drive epic-cum-wartime romantic drama that could have been much better. All of the clichés are present and correct, from the outsider coming under the spell of the land while Waltzing Matilda and Somewhere Over the Rainbow weave in and out of the soundtrack to the obligatory Aboriginal magic coming to the rescue, but they're never quite as much fun as the films it aspires to.

Part of the problem is the many caricatured and mannered performances, with Nicole Kidman overplaying the stage faux-English stuffiness as the impatient aristocrat who arrives at her husbands cattle station to find herself a widow, her murderous racist foreman (David Wenham) plotting against her to ensure Bryan Brown's cattle king retains his monopoly and her only hope to avoid ruin to assemble a ragtag band to drive her cattle to Darwin with Hugh Jackman's drover, with the sneering Wenham in hot pursuit every step of the way. While Kidman gradually improves and becomes less cartoonish as the drive goes on, some characters never really gel, most notably Jack Thompson's alcoholic accountant, who seems introduced as the film's equivalent of Peter Ustinov's dryly comical Captain in The Sundowners but never really has anything to work with. But just as problematic are the gratuitous and often clumsily executed special effects for even basic shots of characters riding in front of landscapes or camping in the outback, which integrate the elements so poorly that they manage to look far worse than any 40s back projection.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By :) VINE VOICE on 6 May 2009
Format: DVD
A surprisingly good film. Didn't quite know what it should be for the first hour or so, comedy? fantasy? silent movie spoof? But it gets better and settles down to an old fashioned romp, fun and easy to follow, just a litttttttle long but otherwise worth a watch.
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57 of 69 people found the following review helpful By Katherine on 15 Feb. 2009
Format: DVD
The reason this film got bad reviews was simple... people took it the wrong way. Some reviewers were saying that people were laughing in the cinema at the beginning, well so was I. Infact I was laughing so hard I had tears in my eyes, because it's funny. It's INTENTIONALLY funny. Baz Luhrmann himself stated that he tried to put a bit of everything in this film including "high comedy" as well as high drama. If you've seen Baz's films before and loved them then you'll love this. Like Moulin Rouge, it begins humourously before taking you through a rollercoaster of emotions to moments of extreme sadness and tension. It looks beautiful and it's played beautifully by all of the actors. Basically this is Baz Luhrmann's nod to the old classics, it's reminiscant of "The African Queen" and "Gone With The Wind" and has obvious nods to "The Wizard of Oz". If you think they don't make films like they used to, this is highly recommended. Don't take it as fact, just let yourself enjoy it and you'll soon be swept along with the story.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Martha Hart on 3 Feb. 2010
Format: DVD
The best film I've seen since The Shawshank Redemption. It had me laughing, crying, my heart aching with joy and sadness. It was thrlling and exciting. I went on a rollercoaster ride of emotions. I first saw this film just after Christmas on tv (I watched it every day for a week), and was so impressed with it I had to rush out and buy the dvd, I've watched it 4 times since. This is is not a film I would normally of chosen to watch as it was billed as a romantic epic and I,m not a fan of slushy films. Austrailia is NOT one of 'those' films it was so much more than that. The chemistry between Jackman and Kidman ... well need I say more. The use of Australia's beautiful landscapes was filmed to it's full advantage. Baz Luhrmann's use of the Aboriginal culture and history was well portrayed and left you wanting to find out more. At 44yrs I was shocked to learn about the way the 'creamies' were taken from their families and was still going on as late as 70's. I also learnt about the Japanese attacking Australia which I never knew about. Australia... Fantasic, Amazing, Brilliant, Thank You.
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Discussion Replies Latest Post
extras on dvd? 6 30 Jul 2009
Have subtitles in Portuguese, please ?? 0 24 Jun 2009
subtitles 1 23 May 2009
Subtitles 4 4 May 2009
Languages 3 14 Apr 2009
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