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Breaker Morant [1980] [DVD]

Edward Woodward , Jack Thompson , Bruce Beresford    Parental Guidance   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
Price: 5.92 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Breaker Morant [1980] [DVD] + Gallipoli - Collectors Edition (1982) [DVD] [1981]
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Product details

  • Actors: Edward Woodward, Jack Thompson, John Waters (III), Bryan Brown, Charles 'Bud' Tingwell
  • Directors: Bruce Beresford
  • Format: Anamorphic, PAL, Widescreen
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Stax Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Sep 2001
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004TIT4
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,618 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Before coming to America to make such acclaimed films as Tender Mercies and Driving Miss Daisy, Australian director Bruce Beresford made a lasting impression with this compelling courtroom drama, considered one the finest films of the Australian new wave of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Based on a true story about three soldiers in the Boer War who are served up as political scapegoats of the British Empire, the film uses a flashback structure to dramatise the courtroom testimony. It begins when the three Australian soldiers are railroaded for the justified killing of a German missionary and placed on trial for court-martial not as a matter of justice, but to mollify the German government for the sake of political expediency. Burdened with a competent but inexperienced and hopelessly disadvantaged lawyer, the soldiers realise that their fate has been sealed and the outcome of their trial is a fait accompli. Unfolding with urgent precision and a riveting focus on its well-drawn characters, Breaker Morant was the all-time box-office hit in Australia at the time of its release in 1980, and it remains one of the very best historical dramas ever made. --Jeff Shannon,

Product Description

During the Boer War, the Australian unit led by Lieutenant Harry 'Breaker' Morant (Edward Woodward) is commanded to fight the Boers to the death. Morant, keen to avenge the death and mutilation of his best friend at the hands of the Boers, is happy to comply, but his capture and execution of prisoners leads to him and two colleagues being court-martialled. A 16-minute interview with star Edward Woodward, recorded in 2000, is also included.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Utterly convincing performance from Edward Woodward as the vengeful Australian soldier Lieutenant Harry Morant in this gripping and tragic film based on real events during the Boer War (from the book 'Scapegoats of the Empire'). With the British Empire losing its bitter fight with the Boer guerillas, Morant's Bushveldt Carbineers have to adopt the same ruthless mobile tactics. When Morant's commanding officer is captured and mutilated by the Boers, he carries out a reprisal attack and summarily executes the prisoners. The story unfolds through flashback as Morant and two co-accused face court marshall, but it soon becomes clear that they are merely scapegoats as Britain and Germany horse trade over the fate of their African colonies. Jack Thompson gives an award-winning portrayal of the dogged Aussie defence lawyer. In the gripping courtroom scenes, Thompson embodies moral outrage at British military hypocrisy. But although Morant's defence is that his troops had always been following unwritten orders to take no prisoners, the film doesn't gloss over the 'innocent' men's culpability for carrying out cold-blooded executions under 'Rule .303'. Scenes in the veldt are breathtakingly photographed, and the courtroom exchanges crackle with anger. But it's the searching relationship between Thompson and his client that give this film a moral complexity that avoids mere anti-imperialist platitudes. The film makes palpable the contempt of the British commanders' for their colonial inferiors and the cynicism towards the rank and file that would soon be re-enacted on a colossal scale in the killing fields of Flanders.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic 28 Aug 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is a classic film, even though it has a tinge of anti Britishness about it. I like Australians, but they do have a chip that weighs heavy on their objectiveness. The British hierarchy was as overbearing on the British working class as it were to its colonials. We're not all from St John's Wood! Having said that it is great film, with great performances from Edward Woodward, Bryan Brown and Jack Thompson.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars great movie 6 Jun 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
first saw this on BBC in the early eighties in an Australian film season and have been looking for it for a long time hence the disappointment at the abysmal quality DVD received ,a real rip-off.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The universal quest for justice 15 Mar 2006
By Stephen A. Haines HALL OF FAME
There are so many positive facets to this film it's difficult to know where to begin. The historical basis of this film, if modified for screen presentation, is incontestable. The Breaker was an Englishman who emigrated to Australia. He was a known, if not celebrated, poet as well as a horse breaker. Like Peter Handcock, Harry Morant went into the army as much for a square meal as for any patriotic motives. The Boer War was distant and dubious for any meaningful values.
Edward Woodward, sheathed in a corset for this film, is a dubious figure as a horse breaker, but displays a superb vehemence in his desire for vengeance for the mutilation of his friend. He recites The Breaker's poetry with sincere feeling and his final lines were delivered with the strength Morant displayed throughout his life. Morant's throwaway line to George Witton as the latter's being led off to prison that the trio were 'scapegoats of empire' became the title of Witton's account of the episode. Bryan Brown's portrayal of Handcock is almost certainly speculative, but he carries off the attitude of a loyal subordinate with style. The Bushveldt Carbiniers were a novel organization [the British introduced the concentration camp in South Africa as well as this irregular cavalry force], and Brown conveys the insecurity this force must have felt in operating in hostile territory.
It is Jack Thompson who deserves the highest accolades for a performance in this movie. How this country solicitor really performed in the courtroom is immaterial [although Witton's book gives Thomas' full praise for his efforts to clear the officers]. Thompson renders superbly the role of a man striving for justice against a clearly stacked deck.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
“Breaker Morant” is a long-forgotten but fantastic movie about breaking rules in the military for the right reasons – with award-winning performances by all three leads – especially Edward Woodward. But it's long been an expensive buy on BLU RAY and even that has problems.

The American BLU RAY issue on Image Entertainment is REGION A LOCKED - so it won't play on our machines unless they're chipped to be 'all regions' (which few are).

There's a EURO alternative on BLU RAY (Region B) that will work without playback problems - but it's also pricey...

So until someone ends the restrictions of Region Coding - or gives this a reasonably priced release in the UK - it's a bad choice between two costly extremes...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breaker Morant DVD 8 Feb 2014
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Breaker Morant is a true story showing the grim reality of the Boer War - 1902 South Africa Edward Woodward plays the leading role & though this was filmed in 1980 still great watch to this day & really is a classic film superbly acted also included interview with Edward Woodward on the role he played, so all in all I would highly recommend this to any and all not only for those interested in War but it is also an Education about the British Empire around 1900
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars very good
Breaker Morant is a 1980 Australian film about the court martial of Breaker Morant, directed by Bruce Beresford and starring British actor Edward Woodward as Harry... Read more
Published 1 month ago by g white film buff
1.0 out of 5 stars Good film shame about the DVD
Good well made film and interesting subject. The DVD is however quite appalling and gives the impression of being some sort of bootleg creation. Worst DVD I have ever bought. Read more
Published 2 months ago by David
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent DVD.
Another film which needs your full attention to understand.

Excellent actors and well presented film of good quality, worth watching,
Published 5 months ago by DERRICK G PROSSER
4.0 out of 5 stars Breaker Morant
Edward Woodward was terrific in this film and very close to what I imagine the original character would have been .A terrific film. Well worth watching.
Published 6 months ago by J. M. Morris
2.0 out of 5 stars Breaker Morant DVD
The disc will not play on my DVD player. I don't know why but I doubt that it is the disc's fault. I shall try it on somebody else's machine. Great film though.
Published 7 months ago by alan maclennan
5.0 out of 5 stars Breaker Morant
Old but good movie which my husband recommended I ought to see. Thoroughly enjoyed it and also the late Edward Woodward's comments some years later regarding this. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Ann Davidson
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant
very good film keeps you entertained all the way through enjoyed it recomend to everyone maybe dated but great watch
Published 10 months ago by davidstewartcoppillie
5.0 out of 5 stars Is that what the British did?
As an officer I consider the film as an honest way of how to recognize that war is never as clean as the ones left on the country wish it to be. Or guess.
Published 11 months ago by Ph BRETON
5.0 out of 5 stars 'This is what comes of Empire building'.
This is a true story, about events during the Boer War, in South Africa, around 1902. Although starring the English actor, Edward Woodward, this is a very Australian film. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Mr. P. Johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars Shoot straight, you bastards! Don't make a mess of it
Three soldiers are court-martialled for murdering prisoners during the Boer War. What could have ended up as being a dry court room drama is transformed into a powerful study of... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Seoulprovider
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