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79 user 137 critic

The Sapphires (2012)

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It's 1968, and four young, talented Australian Aboriginal girls learn about love, friendship and war when their all-girl group The Sapphires entertain the US troops in Vietnam.

Director:

Wayne Blair
27 wins & 25 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tanika Lonesborough Tanika Lonesborough ... Young Gail
Nioka Brennan Nioka Brennan ... Young Kay
Lynette Narkle Lynette Narkle ... Nanny Theresa
Kylie Belling Kylie Belling ... Geraldine
Tammy Anderson Tammy Anderson ... Evelyn
Miah Madden ... Young Julie
Ava Jean Miller-Porter Ava Jean Miller-Porter ... Young Cynthia
Carlin Briggs Carlin Briggs ... Young Jimmy
Gregory J. Fryer Gregory J. Fryer ... Selwyn
Miranda Tapsell ... Cynthia
Deborah Mailman ... Gail
Jessica Mauboy ... Julie
Koby Murray Koby Murray ... Baby Hartley
Hunter Page-Lochard ... Stevie Kayne
Chris O'Dowd ... Dave Lovelace
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Storyline

1968 was the year that changed the world. And for four young Aboriginal sisters from a remote mission this is the year that would change their lives forever. Around the globe, there was protest and revolution in the streets. Indigenous Australians finally secured the right to vote. There were drugs and the shock of a brutal assassination. And there was Vietnam. The sisters, Cynthia, Gail, Julie and Kay are discovered by Dave, a talent scout with a kind heart, very little rhythm but a great knowledge of soul music. Billed as Australia's answer to 'The Supremes', Dave secures the sisters their first true gig, and flies them to Vietnam to sing for the American troops. Based on a true story, THE SAPPHIRES is a triumphant celebration of youthful emotion, family and music. Written by Goalpost Pictures

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It's what's in the groove that counts. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sexuality, a scene of war violence, some language, thematic elements and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

Australia

Language:

English | Aboriginal

Release Date:

9 August 2012 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Les Saphirs See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$38,372, 24 March 2013, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,448,455, 21 July 2013
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Goalpost Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color | Black and White (archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film premiered at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival where it received a 10 minute standing ovation. See more »

Goofs

At the Tupperware party set in 1968, someone is seen holding a Tupperware product from the 1980s, the Harvest Gold Microwave Steamer. See more »

Quotes

Dave: Country and western music is about loss. Soul music is also about loss. But the difference is in country and western music they've lost, they've given up, they're just at home whining about it. In soul music they're struggling to get it back and they haven't given up. Every note that passes through your lips should have the tone of a woman who's grasping and fighting and desperate to retrieve what's been taken from her.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Between the tribute and the end credits are period photos of the real Sapphires and a contemporary picture of the four women. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Australian version is slightly different (roughly 3 minutes longer) than the one shown in International Markets. It does not have a title card in the beginning of the movie explaining about the Aborigine people and that the film is based on a real story. On the other hand. several scenes are cut shorter by a few seconds in the International version, and the end title card is also different. While it describes in details what became of each character in real life, showing pictures of each of them individually, the Australian one briefly sums up their achievements as a whole. There's a final picture of the ladies as they look-like nowadays (shown in black and white in the International version and in color on the Australian one). See more »

Connections

Featured in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #21.113 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

People Make the World a Better Place
Composed by Jean Reynolds
Copyright 1971 Dynastone Publishing Company
By kind permission of Warner Chappell Music Australia Pty Ltd
Performed by Juanita Tippins
Backing Vocals by Jessica Mauboy, Jade MacRae, Prinnie Stevens
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An excellent date movie with a bit of substance
8 April 2013 | by sandiegoharrySee all my reviews

I am a musician who loves soul and a sucker for war movies, so this movie would have to be pretty bad for me to dislike it. Was it perfect? No, far from it - but parts were darned near. That the only face on the screen I knew was one I quite like (Chris O'Dowd) and the lead female (Deborah Mailman) ate the camera up - a refreshing thing to see an unconventional beauty do. Without giving overmuch away, the good: The back story is heartbreaking, the Vietnam bits looked great, the main actors were excellent. The bad: Some of the performances seemed a bit canned, the lead singer sounded like a '90s pop star (with even some auto-tuner) and not everyone on camera was much of an actor - but it's an indie film, so I'm willing to forgive.

If you enjoyed The Commitments, know you some 'Nam films, know something about Australia & the sad treatment of the Aboriginal people and you like old soul music, you'll like this movie. It struck me as nearly a perfect date movie for folks willing to think just a bit, with things for guys and gals alike.


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