Incredibly, despite this film's anti-British establishment sentiments and anti-Colonialism theme, a Royal Charity Film Premiere was held on 23rd October in London, England. First Australian film to win a major award at the Cannes Film Festival. This film is based on a true story. It consists of seven stanzas, of which only the last is heard in the film. Director Bruce Beresford once said in "I have a feeling it doesn't really matter what other films I make, I'll always be introduced as Bruce Beresford who made Breaker Morant One of the reasons cited that why Edward Woodward was cast in the role of Harry Morant was that Morant was English and as such it was decided to have a British actor play the part.
Of the two Anglo-Boer wars that were fought, it is the Second Anglo-Boer war that is depicted in this movie. Known as the first "dirty war" of the 20th century, it was fought between 11 October until 31 May The period of the two wars combined are known as the Boer Wars. Producer Matt Carroll once said of this: "This is the first film produced in this country [Australia] that has its setting in another country". The role of the Bushvelt Carbineers was to fight against Boer civilian commandos.
Apparently, this represented the first ever use of the term "commando". This book had been written by Kit Denton and had been first published in The dust jacked of this re-issue announced: "Soon to be made into a major film". As this film was not an adaptation of this book, this published statement was incorrect as no part of the book was used for the film. Playwright and scriptwriter Kenneth G. Director Bruce Beresford provided critical valuable evidence as a witness.
Ross won the court case and the publisher withdrew the offending edition and pulped all the remaining copies. Renfrew in 'The Gainesville Sun' on 24 June , Denton declared that both his earlier draft screenplay and his later novel were "not involved with the film".
It is still often confused as to which of these two texts, the play and the book, that this film is based on. He felt I was the one to play Breaker, and put the idea to [producer] Matt Carroll who agreed. They then found that I had this extraordinary resemblance to the man, which spurred them on even more. I was then sent the script The script wasn't finished Soon afterwards, Bruce sent me a draft which was much closer to the final one. I thought it was great. Thomas in this film.
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The meaning and relevance of this film's 'Breaker Morant' title is that it refers to a nickname of the central character. The word Breaker refers to the breaker of horses as in breaking horses whilst Morant refers to the character's surname. The actual complete full name of this film's protagonist was Henry Harbord Morant. Apparently, it has been alleged that Morant's actual name at birth was Edwin Murrant.
Apparently, Australian star actor Jack Thompson was cast in this film on the absolute insistence of the film's Australian theatrical film distributor, Roadshow. The following quote by Breaker Morant appeared on some movie posters: "If you encounter any Boers, you really must not loot 'em and if you wish to leave these shores, for pity's sake don't shoot 'em.
The issues were complex, but basically the Boers wished to retain their independence from England. By , British forces uneasily occupied most Boer territory, but had difficulty winning an outright victory because of mobile guerrilla forces".
The location of Burra and its surrounding environs was chosen because it resembled the South African veldt, particularly the British Military Camp, Fort Edward and Pietersberg areas of the South African Transvaal where the Boer War incident occurred. Rod Steiger was the early main contender to play Lieutenant Harry "Breaker" Morant and later, Australian actor Terence Donovan was highly considered and became the favorite for the part.
Donovan had also worked with this film's director Bruce Beresford in the earlier South Australian Film Corporation production Miljoonakeikka However, the lead role eventually went to Callan actor Edward Woodward due to a desire to have an international star in the leading role. This happened after leading British thesp Alan Bates had declined the part.
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Terence Donovan was given another part in the film, that of Captain Simon Hunt. The military trial in this film has been described by some as being a "kangaroo court". A kangaroo court is however a sham judicial proceeding, usually designed to arrive at a prearranged result. While the court martial in the film may have reached the verdict required by the Army hierarchy, it seems to have been conducted correctly and in accordance with regulations. The quote from Lord Byron heard in the film is from the last two stanzas of his poem 'Impromptus'.
Ross source] play after extensive research into Morant's story, both in Australia and at the Army Museum in London. And in London he met Welsh actor Kenneth Griffith who turned out to be an authority on the Boer War with a large file on Morant which provided additional material for the screenplay. Phonetically, the title is pronounced "May Sah-ree Mah-reh". The song is heard sung in this film by John Pfitzner who plays a Boer leader.
The song is also known as 'Soldiers of the King', depending on the current gender of the reigning monarch. The ballad features as this film's theme music. Edward Woodward sings the song during the closing credits. Some controversy in Australian Actor's Equity circles occurred over the casting of British actor Edward Woodward in this Australian film. Actor Edward Woodward once said around the time that this film was theatrically released that playing Breaker Morant in this picture rated as his best feature movie role yet.
Unlike in the film, Captain Alfred Taylor was a central figure in the alleged crimes of the Bushveldt Carbineers and in reality perhaps the most culpable of the group. In the film he is played as a staff officer for Lord Kitchener and merely an advisor to the BVC officers. The implication is that, as a proper British officer, he was safe from the fates of Morant and Handcock. In fact, Taylor was an Anglo-Irish orphan who had served for years as a mercenary in Rhodesia working for Cecil Rhodes and he had a very bloody history in both the Boer War and the Second Matabele War, where he had been accused repeatedly of murder, genocide, and theft, especially of cattle.
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He had also resigned from the service by the time of the trial, in the false hope it would allow him to avoid prosecution. A popular legal theory at the time was that his trial had been scheduled last in the hope that the other defendants, including Morant, would testify against him in return for leniency.
In the end the others would not turn state's evidence and Taylor was acquitted on a technicality and returned to Rhodesia to live off the proceeds of his wartime looting. Amazingly he would be allowed to re-join the British Army and serve in World War I, retiring finally as a recipient of the Distinguished Service Order. In , Edward Woodward once said of working with Bruce Beresford : "The keystone of his direction, as with all good directors I think, is that he encourages you to contribute to the part, even to very the way it is written.
He is a very clever director and can achieve an almost unspoken rapport with his actors. He only has to movie his finger before he says something, and you immediately know what he is talking about. His communication with actors is unbelievably perceptive. This film was made and released about two years after Kenneth G. It was a production produced by the Melbourne Theatre Company. After collaborating for the first time together on this film, actor Edward Woodward and director Bruce Beresford went on to work together again on two more films all made five years apart, on King David and Mister Johnson This is his own dramatic, authentic and at times terrifying story.
As radio operator Hirschfeld had access to secrets kept from other men on board. Often he knew the real truth of the battles being fought across the Atlantic. He served under three exceptional commanders. Hirschfeld and his comrades fought the Battle of the Atlantic, vividly brought to life in his account of the ebb and flow of that great battle from the early glory days of the U-boat wolf packs to the later years of grim attrition and U-boat losses.
But Hirschfeld survived for one final voyage, which will remains wrapped in mystery as his U-boat surrendered en route to Japan with a cargo of radioactive material and an Me on board. Enter your Postcode or Suburb to view availability and delivery times.