Breaker Morant is one of the most acclaimed Australian films, telling a powerful tale of wartime betrayal and injustice. Henry "Breaker" Morant (Edward Woodward) is an Englishman living in Australia at the end of the 19th century. When war breaks out in 1899 between Britain and the Boers (descendants of Dutch colonists), Morant and a number of Australians volunteer for duty and are absorbed into the non-regular units of the British army. Acting under orders from his commanders, Morant oversees the execution of several Boer prisoners; it turns out that one of them was German, and in order to keep the peace with Germany, Britain agrees to courtmartial Morant and two other soldiers, sentencing two to death and one to life imprisonment. Based on a play by Kenneth Ross, Bruce Beresford's film is powerfully filmed and acted and has become a classic anti-war movie since its 1980 release; the script (co-written by Beresford) was nominated for an Academy Award. The final execution scene is nearly overpowering in its sense of tragedy and futility. ~ Don Kaye, Rovi
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Thoughtful and Well Crafted, Breaker Morant offers no easy answers; it shows history to be a human affair, and human life is a very messy business. The final scene is heart-breaking, but afterward I found it difficult to pass judgment on the British government or on most of the principal characters. What is the greater good? What does it mean to be guilty, to show courage, or to face justice?
Beautifully shot, makes me want to visit South Africa. Edward Woodward and Jack Thompson are fantastic.
Superb in many categories: writing, character, acting, directing, action, and more. A must for fans of tough courtroom drama, and British Empire military history, with a dose of "Gunga Din" -style action. Not a lighthearted popcorn film, this is a thinking person's film, and well worth the rental.
A truly splendid film! The foibles of war are exemplified in this unjust execution of two able soldiers
fighting a very unconventional war with variable rules of engagement. Edward Woodward who was seen
the year before as Sir Samuel Hoare in Churchill, the Wilderness Years,does a creditable job as the
senior Aussie officer along with Bryan Brown..these two give powerful performances..but the gold
star goes to Jack Thompson who plays the defense lawyer in this kangaroo court..you might remember
him as the defense lawyer in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. 41/2 stars. PS:I've been to South and East Africa several times and it was as in the film.