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My First Wife (1984)

PG | | Drama | 13 September 1984 (USA)
The film follows the dissolution of John and Helen's marriage and the aftermath.


Paul Cox


Paul Cox, Bob Ellis
5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
John Hargreaves ... John
Wendy Hughes ... Helen
Lucy Angwin Lucy Angwin ... Lucy
David Cameron ... Tom
Anna Maria Monticelli ... Hilary
Betty Lucas Betty Lucas ... Helen's Mother
Lucy Uralov Lucy Uralov ... John's Mother
Robin Lovejoy Robin Lovejoy ... Helen's father
Charles 'Bud' Tingwell ... Helen's Father
Jon Finlayson Jon Finlayson ... Bernard
Julia Blake ... Kirstin
Ronald Falk ... Psychiatrist (as Ron Falk)
Xenia Groutas Xenia Groutas ... John's Sister
Reg Roddick Reg Roddick ... Priest
Renée Geyer Renée Geyer ... Barmaid


The film follows the dissolution of John and Helen's marriage and the aftermath.

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Did You Know?


One of seven film collaborations of actress Julia Blake and writer-director Paul Cox. They are [in order]: 'Lonely Hearts' (1982), 'Man of Flowers' (1983), 'My First Wife' (1984), 'The Paper Boy' episode of 'Winners' (1985), 'Cactus' (1986), 'Innocence' (2000), and 'Human Touch' (2004). During the 1980s, Blake appeared in a Cox film every year for five straight consecutive years between 1982 and 1986. See more »


Featured in A Journey with Paul Cox (1996) See more »

User Reviews

Requiem For a Marriage
21 November 2002 | by telegonusSee all my reviews

My First Wife is an excruciatingly emotional film about the break-up of a marriage in contemporary Australia. There's not much new in it, and the dialogue isn't especially brilliant, but it's exceeding well done and sharply observant. Director and co-author Paul Cox based the story partly on events in his own life, and it shows. I feel a little cool about the film, as it delves into extremely intimate feelings with a mix of openness and artlessness that I find at times offputting. There are things that we are told about the husband that it might be better not to know, or to have told differently. The cast, led by John Hargreaves and Wendy Hughes, is flawless. Like so many films from Australia and Great Britain over the last twenty years, My First Wife has about it an undercurrent of pessimism that goes beyond its putative subject matter, as if the real subject was the Anglo-Saxon world in general, and its imminent demise, which, as is suggested in this film, richly deserved.

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Release Date:

13 September 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Minha Primeira Mulher See more »

Filming Locations:

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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