The Sapphires 2012

Amazon Instant Video

(85) IMDb 7/10
Available in HD

Cynthia, Gail, Julie and Kay were four singers with lots of passion, but precious little talent. Recognising something special in the way the girls' sing, kindly talent scout Dave offers to shape them into a Motown-inspired soul group and get them out on the road. But when their first gig turns out to be on the front lines of Vietnam - where death has become part of the daily routine - the ambi...

Starring:
Miranda Tapsell, Deborah Mailman
Runtime:
1 hour 39 minutes

Available in HD on supported devices

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The Sapphires

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Product Details

Genres Drama, Comedy
Director Wayne Blair
Starring Miranda Tapsell, Deborah Mailman
Supporting actors Shari Sebbens, Jessica Mauboy, Chris O'Dowd
Studio Entertainment One
BBFC rating Parental Guidance
Rental rights 48 hour viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Tommy Dooley TOP 100 REVIEWER on 14 Mar 2013
Format: DVD
This is one of those films that if you could you do so, you would give it a great big hug. It is an Australian, musical, comedy drama. It takes us back to the heady days of 1968, soul music is reaching its' zenith and the Vietnam War is dragging inexorably on. Three sisters from the back end of nowhere decide to enter a local talent competition, which is like a mini `X-Factor' audition. There they meet a washed up entertainment officer who is more fond of drink than work. This is Dave Lovelace (the marvellous Chris O'Dowd - `Bridesmaids') and he sees the star quality despite the racist welcome that the girls get from the locals. However they have chosen to sing a Merle Haggard song, C and W. Dave tells them that they have soul so they should sing soul music.

So after replying to an advert to entertain the troops in Vietnam, the girls get offered the gig and before you can say Ho Chi Min, they are in war torn Saigon. This is where their life experience truly begins and they find themselves all over the place singing their hearts out, but the war is never far away. All the performances are brilliant, even the extras, the songs are all beautiful especially so if you like a big dollop of soul.

I absolutely loved this film, the girls are all top notch and sing like angels, albeit angels with sass and attitude. It is also touching, funny and full of life affirming love. Chris O'Dowd is brilliant as the semi talented, semi alcoholic manager. The period detail is great too and the horrors of the war are not ignored either. This though was never a war story, it is all of the things it claims to be and has a great love story thrown in for good measure. It is also based on a true story which makes it even better for it. As I cant say anything bad about this I shall stop, as I simply can not recommend highly enough, it made me feel absolutely fab-rilliant, and now my gush is over, I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By haunted on 2 Jan 2013
Format: DVD
Though apparently based on fact "The Sapphires" tells the unlikely story of a group of female Aboriginal singers travelling around war-torn Vietnam entertaining US troops with their soul music. And they have a drunken Irish guy (Chris O'Dowd) as their manager!

I saw in the end credits that the movie is based on a play and that made sense, as the movie seems to be a series of longish scenes.
The script isn't the movies greatest strength so thankfully the cast all put in suitably energetic performances.

You have some great music, a taste of Australian race relations' issues, some comedy and a bit of romance and it all adds up to an enjoyable movie.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By "Belgo Geordie" on 25 Dec 2012
Format: DVD
This is an inspiring story and on the whole, an enjoyable film. Four Aboriginal girls with a talent for singing turn into young women with talent that takes then out of the Australian outback to delivering soul revue to the American and other troops in Vietnam. It is definitely a feel good pitch, at times over sugared, but cannot take away from the achievement portrayed. However, the music pumps and delivers soul that is both true to its origin but sufficiently updated to engage with the musical tastes of today. The women in the lead roles are in a league of their own, sibling/cousin rivalry and sassiness that translates into their combined musical talent is a joy to watch and experience. Despite the neatly tied story lines and predictability this is a universal story that works. The cinematography is tight and in tune with the story. It is up there with "The Commitments" as a film that inspires and is fun and leaves you satisfied.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Swellms on 11 Nov 2012
Format: DVD
There were two or three times during this wonderfully enjoyable film when I had to stop myself jumping to my feet in the cinema and applauding at the end of a song. The music - and in particular the stunning singing of Jessica Mauboy as Julie - really is that good.

The Sapphires tells the story (based on true events) of four Aboriginal girls in late 1960's Australia who form a singing group under the guidance of Chris O'Dowd's reprobate management, and win the right to tour Vietnam entertaining the troops.

There is a lot going on here in a relatively short period of screen time. Music of course, social commentary, comedy, the rapid transformation of otherwise very ordinary lives, love, war and sex (and the four girls are very sexy in the way that real people are). It's a good-looking film, apart from a few clips of documentary footage of Vietnam which feel a little levered in, mixing glamour and realism in just the right quantities. And amongst the feel-good elements, the film sets out to make some serious points about race. On the whole, it succeeds. Some of the white characters - O'Dowd himself, and the manager of the pub where the girls' journey begins - may be rather one-dimensional on this point, but the film is generally very far from trite in dealing with themes of identity and prejudice. The scenes where Kay, a fair-skinned Aboriginal child, is forcibly removed from her family by government officials to be brought up as "white" is unexpected and powerful.

The amount of ground which The Sapphires attempts to cover leads, perhaps inevitably, to some weaknesses of plot and dialogue, and this means that it's not quite a five star effort. But it's highly enjoyable and thought-provoking, leaving you with plenty to savour and reflect upon.
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