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
There really was an Australian girl group in the 60s called The Sapphires but they only had three members not four. When they were invited to tour for the troops in Vietnam, two of the group declined due to their anti-war stance, so the remaining Sapphire drafted in her sister to help her out. See more »
The movie is set in 1968, but The Sapphires sing The Staple Singers' "I'll Take You There" (released in 1972) and Merle Haggard's "Today I Started Loving You Again" (released in 1970). It also features "Run Through the Jungle" (released in 1970) in the opening scene. See more »
Before we go than, girls when I met you you were doing all country and western thing and that's fine we all make mistakes. But here is what we learn from that mistake. 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 and they are just all wining about it. In soul music they are struggling to get it back, they haven't given up.
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Preceding the end credits is this tribute:
The women who inspired this story are sisters Laurel Robinson and Lois Peeler and their cousins Beverley Briggs and Naomi Mayers.
For over 40 years they have been active community leaders, working tirelessly to improve health and education for Aboriginal people.
Between them, they have 7 children, 10 grand children and 4 great grand children...
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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