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Rabbit Proof Fence [Blu-ray]

Kenneth Branagh , Everlyn Sampi , Philip Noyce    Parental Guidance   Blu-ray
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (93 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Kenneth Branagh, Everlyn Sampi, Tianna Sansbury, Laura Monaghan, David Gulpilil
  • Directors: Philip Noyce
  • Producers: Philip Noyce, Christine Olsen
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Optimum Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 26 Mar 2012
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (93 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B006DGI6QA
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 486,202 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

During the most part of the early to mid 20th century, Australia's government policy was that mixed race Aboriginal children would be better off being brought up as white and so forcefully removed them from their homes to be trained as domestic servants. This film follows the true story of 3 such children; cousins Molly, Gracie and Daisy, who in 1931 found themselves being taken from their parents, sent to an institution and forced to forget their family and culture. However, Molly leads her 2 cousins in a daring escape across 1,500 miles of outback with no water and only the fence erected across the country to stop the epidemic of rabbits as a guide. Kenneth Branagh plays the government official charged with the return of the girls and the story is based on the book by Doris Pilkington, the neice of Daisy.


Based on a true story, Rabbit-proof Fence moves with dignified grace from its joyful opening scenes to a conclusion that's moving beyond words. The title refers to a 1,500-mile fence separating outback desert from the farmlands of Western Australia. It's here, in 1931, that three aboriginal girls are separated from their mothers and transported to a distant training school, where they are prepared for assimilation into white society by a racist government policy. Gracie, Daisy, and Molly belong to Australia's "stolen generations", and this riveting film (based on the book by Molly's daughter, Doris Pilkington Garimara) follows their escape and tenacious journey homeward, while a stubborn policy enforcer (Kenneth Branagh) demands their recapture.

Director Phillip Noyce chronicles their ordeal with gentle compassion, guiding his untrained, aboriginal child actors with a keen eye for meaningful expressions. Their performances evoke powerful emotions (subtly enhanced by Peter Gabriel's excellent score), illuminating a shameful chapter of Australian history while conveying our universal need for a true and proper home. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb rendition of amazing story 10 Feb 2004
By Stephen A. Haines HALL OF FAME
Philip Noyce has transformed an epic journey into an example of visual poetry. Three girls, kidnapped and destined for "assimilation" into white Australian society, escape their "protectors". In an astonishing journey, pursued by government police and an Aborigine tracker, they evade authority's clutches. After seven weeks and eighteen hundred kilometres journey, they reach home. Perhaps the longest foot journey in Australia.
Noyce beautifully captures the harsh environment traversed by the trio, even though the filming was far distant from the actual location. The girls must use every available cover and device to escape capture, and Noyce maintains the tension throughout the film. Using numerous close-ups to convey feeling, you're kept aware that flight from captivity isn't a social event. Encounters with either white or fellow Aborigines force reserve, suspicion and hesitation - talk is minimised, even among the three escapees. This is a highly visual film in a setting providing oppotunities for lush images.
It is the people, however, that give this film its true grandeur. Clearly, the fleeing girls aren't professionals before the camera. Everlyn Sampi's facial expressions seize the soul in nearly every scene. She's aware of the burden she's carrying, leading the escape, keeping them free, thwarting detection and pursuit, finding the track. David Gulpilil, the Aborigine tracker, also rivets the eye as he leads the quest to return the girls to the mission. How does he feel in pursuit of his own kind in the employ of the dominant, racist, white society? Kenneth Branagh might have absorbed the soul of A.O. Neville so graphically does he portray the "Protector of Aborigines".
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Follow the fence 19 April 2004
Rabbit-Proof Fence is a remarkable story of the courage of three children in the face of brutal racism. As late as 1970, Australia allowed the forcible capture of mixed aboriginal-white children and trained them in concentration-camp-like centers to be domestic servants in white society. This film tells the true story of three such girls who escaped from the center in 1932, and walked 1500 miles back to their family. Their only marker, across the desolate desert and bush, was the world's longest fence, the "rabbit-proof fence," which eventually led them home.

This story of Australia's misguided attempt to help the aborigines "in spite of themselves" has an excellent script and direction. The children, all non-actors, are wonderfully convincing and sympathetic. Kenneth Branagh has a small role as the government official who tries to recapture the girls. David Gulpilil plays the aboriginal tracker who relentlessly follows the girls, and his villainous character was truly frightening. The sweeping photography of the arid bush shows just how tremendous the girls' accomplishment was. Rabbit-Proof Fence is a very sad but important story and I heartily recommend it.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful 5 April 2006
I can't remember why I bought this dvd but was so glad I did, it remains as one of the most powerful memorable films I own along with Hotel Rwanda. The fact that its based on real life makes it that more amazing. The cinematography is brilliant and the story will have you feeling their hope and pain throughout right till the end.
If you want to be inspired, your eyes opened and your life that little bit enriched with history get this film. If you are a viewer that is moved by powerful actions and emotions, see this film and you will be glad you bought it.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stark but beautiful minimalist cinema 17 Jan 2004
Some reviewers have tended to confuse the courageousness of the film (look, it's a nice film, but it isn't especially daring - it's a conventional "battle against-the-odds" survival rap) with the courageousness of the underlying story. Personally, I didn't find the political/historical context that interesting, but there was more than enough cinematic artistry in Rabbit-Proof Fence to make it a very worthwhile experience.
It's a very simple, linear tale. It's gorgeously photographed and the soundtrack (both Peter Gabriel's music and the 5.1 surround mix) is very involving. The narrative isn't really important - the story does little more than document, episodically, a long journey home across a desert. But this provides a terrific figurative platform; the fence represents not a barrier but a lifeline, a map, a way home and in one exquisite moment, a heartstring: a shot of the girls first grabbing the wire is artfully spliced next to a view of their mother, 800 miles away, holding the same wire, pining for her daughters.
Nice editing, that man.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Fantastic 24 July 2003
This movie was simple and emotional. It did not have too much dialogue but was very deep. It is set in Australia and is about how the aborigines who originally were in Australia were pushed out by the white Australians. This movie demonstrates the fight about one black girl who fights to get back home to her family from the camps the whites have taken her to. The movie sets the pace perfectly. And really the best thing about this movie is that you feel like crying because it is a TRUE STORY, and because it is done so beautifully. I watched this with my girlfriend and she went and bought the soundtrack the very next day. She cried when we watched it, and perhaps you will too.Movies like this are better than the rest because they don't have any cheap thrills, or any effects or anything like that, they are just made beautifully, everything is thought out, music is amazing, script is simple. Which is great.
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