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Gallipoli [VHS] [1981]

4.4 out of 5 stars 106 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Mel Gibson, Mark Lee, Bill Kerr, Harold Hopkins, Charles Lathalu Yunipingu
  • Directors: Peter Weir
  • Writers: Peter Weir, David Williamson, Ernest Raymond
  • Producers: Ben Gannon, Francis O'Brien, Martin Cooper, Patricia Lovell
  • Language: English
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Paramount
  • VHS Release Date: 2 Oct. 2000
  • Run Time: 106 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004CJ3I
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 317,338 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Includes new, never-before-seen interview with director Peter Weir.

From Amazon.co.uk

An outstanding drama, Gallipoli resonates with sadness long after you have seen it. Set during World War I, this brutally honest antiwar movie was cowritten by director Peter Weir. Mark Lee and a sinfully handsome Mel Gibson are young, idealistic best friends who put aside their hopes and dreams when they join the war effort. This character study follows them as they enlist and are sent to Gallipoli to fight the Turks. The first half of the film is devoted to their lives and their strong friendship. The second half details the doomed war efforts of the Aussies, who are no match for the powerful and aggressive Turkish army. Because the script pulls us into their lives and forces us to care for these young men, we are devastated by their fate. --Rochelle O'Gorman.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Bob Salter TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 25 Feb. 2009
Format: DVD
****DOES CONTAIN SPOILERS****

"Gallipoli" made in 1981 is an Australian film directed by Peter Weir and starring Mel Gibson and Mark Lee, all natives of that country. The film is set during the First World War and the title refers to the peninsula of the same name located on the Aegean coast of The Dardenelles in Turkey. It was in this area that between the 25th April 1915 when it was captured, to the 19th December 1915 when it was evacuated, that many ANZAC (Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) soldiers fought and died. The climax to this film is at the brutal battle of "The Nek", which was a terrible killing field for the ANZACs.

The film concerns two young men from rural Western Australia who become close friends whilst competing against each other in a sprint at an athletics meeting. Mel Gibson, looking strangely youthful plays the cynical Frank Dunne whilst Mark Lee portrays the innocent and idealistic Archy Hamilton. Swayed by propaganda which was rife at the time they enlist to fight for their Countrys cause, although many recruits had never heard of the places involved in the conflict. Archy is considerably more enthusiastic about the idea than Frank.

They are then shipped out for training in Egypt where the soldiers indulge in a bit of good natured "Pommy bashing". Well it is an Australian film, so that is "Fair Dinkum". Thrashing us at cricket with monotonous regularity does not seem to appease their appetite for this genial sport! In all too short a time they are transported to the harsh realities of trench warfare in Gallipoli. Having trained with the Light Horse this bloody stalemate is not what they expected and they see the senseless slaughter first hand as their ranks are decimated.
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Format: DVD
Uneven but powerful film about the First World War atrocity at Gallipoli where appalling incompetence by the generals lead to thousands of Australian soldiers being ordered above the trenches into direct Turkish gunfire. Gallipoli the film is also largely about the development of the unlikely friendship between country boy Archy Hamilton (Mark Lee) and the more streetwise Frank Dunne (Mel Gibson). United as outstanding, competing, athletic prospects Archy leads the more questioning Frank into joining up after they undertake an unscheduled desert trek to Perth.

Like most of the other rookie volunteers, the geographically isolated Archy is incredibly naïve about the war, seeing it as little more than a foreign adventure. After clearly inadequate training in Egypt, the two friends and their comrades land amidst spectacular gunfire in Turkey and are soon disgracefully ordered forward with sudden catastrophic results.

Made by renowned Australian director Peter Weir, the pointless waste of these young lives packs a very powerful punch. Less impressive is the film's development towards this climax with Archy and Frank's burgeoning friendship being under-developed on-screen. Gallipoli's lack of cohesiveness is also not helped by it already feeling dated, not least due to its horrible early 80s music interludes. Still it's a very powerful indictment of a terrible episode of army incompetence and despite its flaws, is well worth seeing.
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Format: VHS Tape
I found this film to be a masterpiece. Gibson and Lee both put in sound performances and conveyed their characters emotions well. With some light-heartedness it's not all doom and gloom, but it makes you realise how bad WWI actually was.
From a sheer entertainment point of view it's 99.9% on my scale, but historically it's only about 80%. Still a magnificent war drama made better by some humerous sections of the film.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I recently saw this on the big screen when the London Australian Film Society screened it on ANZAC Day and it really holds its own.

The script is wonderful - written by one of Australia's greatest playwrites, David Williamson. The acting is fabulous - I think this is Mel at his best and poor old Mark Lee, well he never really shook of this role to move on to others it's so powerfully iconic. The cinematography is gorgeous and say what you will regarding the rather jarring 80s synth theme - if you grew up with this film you can't imagine it with any other soundtrack. All pulled together by Peter Weir. Brilliant.

This is NOT a documentary in any way shape or form. If you want to learn about the Gallipoli campaign then I suggest you read a book about it. This is powerful storytelling with deep anti-war undertones. Tracking the journey of two under-age sprinters as they meet, con their way to signing up and travelling 1/2 way round the world in the search for adventure and find instead the shocking reality of war.

Can't recommend it enough.
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By hillbank68 TOP 500 REVIEWER on 12 Jan. 2007
Format: DVD
This is a film I have seen several times since it was first issued, and it has always packed a considerable emotional punch. It tells of the accidental friendship of two young Australians, one from a comfortable farming background, the other rather from the other side of the tracks, brought together by their talent as sprinters. Both join up and are transported first to Egypt and then to the Dardanelles. There, at Gallipoli, they play out the last stage of their friendship in the inferno of bullet and shellfire which met the Anzac troops. The film is amusing in places, very characterful, visually very beautiful. The soundtrack seems to me appropriate ; I don't find it dated at all, and the classical pieces fit the sometimes sombre mood and the touching portrayal of the Australian officer who celebrates his wedding anniversary by playing old records of the famous Pearl Fishers' duet. I used to use this film a bit in a film studies course in the school in which I taught and it always left the teenagers silent and thoughtful ; it certainly touched them. Highly recommended.
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