Winner of Six Australian Academy Awards, Including Best Picture and Best Director. Exquisite 2-Disc Special Edition This is the film that became a worldwide sensation and remains perhaps the most beloved and acclaimed ro... more »mantic epic of all time. Oscar -nominee Judy Davis (Passage To India, Husbands and Wives) made her international debut as Sybylla Melvyn, a free spirited young writer who refues to conform to society's expectations of how a 'proper woman' should live her life. Sam Neill (Jurassic Park, The Piano) co-stars as the wealthy suitor who tries to win her restless heart in this Oscar nominated classic by Gillian Armstrong (Little Women, Starstruck). Long unavailable in America, My Brilliant Career has been fully restored and remastered in High Definition from the original negative, under the supervision of Academy Award nominated Director of Photography Donald McAlpine.« less
C Ruiz-Esparza | San Francisco, left of Albuquerque | 06/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It only took a decade. My Brilliant Career is FINALLY on DVD!!! It is a quiet tour de force of good acting, beautiful art direction and cinematography, a wonderful story about a writer coming out of girlish egotism to join a larger world and form a vision, and an intriguing picture of Victorian Australia among the immigrant society. Judy Davis is sparkle and tang playing the volatile Sybilla, very molten as she fires, cools and then erupts like any young adult. Sam Neill, aside from being very effective eyedrops that reminds you of Gary Cooper or Alan Bates, swaggers and holds fast as her suitor, being a willing foil to unpredictability. There are accomplished supporting performances that paint her story with pathos, a lot of humor with the steady understanding of the importance of family love. In the spirit of a time when passions were to be restrained and redirected into more interesting pursuits, My Brilliant Career stays in character in this modern visual medium by presenting passion in the guise of mischievous boat rides and a pillow fight for the ages. You'll feel the panic of dust blowing mercilessly through the windows, parental anxiety, teenage anxiety, affection in the muddiest and wealthier places, and the frustration of love. It is edifying enough to glimpse into that time as a history or anthropology lesson, or you can just sit back and let it entertain.
I first saw this movie on double bill following Night of the Shooting Stars (by the Taviani brothers) at a movie theater in Washington, D.C. It was like eating really good lasagna with a really good apple pie. You have to really focus on each film and not think about them together. A better partner to My Brilliant Career would be Pricilla, Queen of the Desert, Man from Snowy River, or Lantana. You could also have a Judy Davis film festival by watching it with Husbands and Wives, Impromptu, or that film she did about Judy Garland. For a Sam Neill film fest, watch the Reilly Ace of Spies series, The Piano, Plenty, or Cry in the Dark. Or, you can watch it by itself, like a piece of really good apple pie."
cal664 | 03/02/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is truly a joy to watch. It is about a young woman in turn-of-the-century Australia (which is very accurately portrayed in the film) who dreams from a young age of being a great artist, whether it be in music, literature, or acting. She is a loud, unruly girl born into poverty but given a chance to live with her rich grandmother, which is the beginning of everything. Two main suitors clamor for her hand in marriage, one of which she detests and one of which she loves - but she is faced with the decision of marriage to a man she actually likes, or to pursue her dream of artistic independence. Judy Davis gives an Oscar-worthy performance as Sybill, and Sam Neill is at his youngest. This a wonderful, endearing movie that you shouldn't be disappointed with."
Judy Davis is Extraordinary
Birdman | Minnetonka, MN USA | 09/30/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I will not attempt to repeat the complimnts of other viewers. I will say only that MY BRILLIANT CAREER is a beautifully written and photographed tale of a vivacious, independent young woman (Judy Davis) and the unrequited love of her suitor (Sam Neill). The characters are unforgettable and the love story complex. As a period piece, the film comes alive. New South Wales and other sites emerge through meticulous art direction, wonderful costumes and delicious cinematography.
While the score hangs its hat on a single melody from Robert Schumann's "Scenes of Childhood," the salon performances are captivating and the dance sequences lively and colorful.
But this is Judy Davis's film by far. Her performance is funny, fiery and nuanced. She is also a natural beauty who speaks as clearly with her body and eyes as with her words. She conveys the stubbornness with which many writers pursue their work, forsaking everything for the freedom and space they need to create.
The extras here are generous, with the most valuable feature in this two-disk set "The Miles Franklin Story"-- on which the film is ultimately based.
I am grateful this film is accessible again, beauifully remastered in high definition, with a crisp, clear soundtrack. The packaging is also exemplary.
MY BRILLIANT CAREER has been on my top-20 list for a quarte- century, and it still holds its place. A captivating, funny and deeply moving film with a first performance by a young actress that has no equal."
Timeless Australian Classic is on DVD (but not in USA yet)!
cal664 | San Francisco Bay Area | 09/13/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"What's to say about "My Brilliant Career" that hasn't been said already? A superb first effort for then up and coming actors Judy Davis, Sam Neill, and director Gillian Armstrong. Those 3 are truly living up to the title of the film.
In answer to the previous reviewers here on Amazon.com, true that the film isn't available on DVD or new VHS for that matter in the USA. I heard there was a problem with who had the rights to the film in the last 10 years. Supposedly, some Panamanian company acquired the rights inadvertantly with a package of forgettable Aussie films. Margaret Fink, the producer, said she nearly dropped dead when she heard this. Fortunately, Fink and Australia reacquired "My Brilliant Career" in the last couple of years through legal means. That's why "My Brilliant Career" has already been released on new DVDs in the UK and Australia. I bought the Australian DVD because of the widescreen presentation and DVD extras that it has which include a great commentary by Gillian Armstrong as well as short interviews with producer Margaret Fink, Gillian Armstrong, film footage from Canne with Fink, Davis, and Armstrong, and more. It cost me about $23 (includes shipping from Australia) for a brand new DVD which is a bargain compared to how much used tapes go for on ebay. The UK version is cheaper but has no xtras I think. These region coded 2 or 4 DVDs will not play on a typical DVD player sold in the USA, but you can easily find certain DVD players sold at Bestbuy, Target, computer stores, etc... that can be made multi-region (region free) so they can play any DVD in the world. I bought myself one particular brand/model for $50. If you don't want to buy a region free player, you can also play foreign DVDs on your computer DVD-ROM drive easily.
Hopefully, one day "My Brilliant Career" will be released in the USA in glorious DVD. The film has been broadcast on cable channels in the USA in the past year. Which could be a sign it will end up on DVD here eventually. Perhaps similar to how "Impromptu" appeared on cable, then a year later it was released on DVD. Cross your fingers!"
An All-Time Favorite of Mine
cal664 | 08/12/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have watched this movie numerous times over the years since its release in 1979 and it never disappoints me. The story rings as true for me today (as a 40-something) as it did as a 20-something....great movies are like that, you know?"