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A Cry in the Dark (1988)

Meryl Streep , Sam Neill , Fred Schepisi  |  PG-13 |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Meryl Streep, Sam Neill, Dale Reeves (II), David Hoflin, Jason Reason
  • Directors: Fred Schepisi
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: December 21, 1999
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00002E22E
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,016 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "A Cry in the Dark" on IMDb

Special Features

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Editorial Reviews

An Australian woman stands trial for the murder of her child, which she claims was stolen by a dingo. Based on a true story.
Genre: Feature Film-Drama
Rating: PG13
Release Date: 3-FEB-2004
Media Type: DVD

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Streep at her best July 26, 2000
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
Meryl Streep is firing on all cylinders in this brilliant portrayal (and movie) of Lindy Chamberlain. I can't believe she didn't get the Oscar for this one. Stripping away all possible mannerisms (twitchy eyes, flighty hands, dramatic pauses) and adopting a steeled gaze, Streep transforms herself into the most dislikable (and fascinating!) victim she has yet played. It's almost as if the bones of her face have been replaced by iron. People alway remark about her accents, but the accent is always the least of her characterizations. Her ability to adopt the look and simply the BEING of her characters is unparalleled. This is really screen acting at its best. And this is a great film, too, for its observations into how an entire culture can become caught up in the guilt or innocence of one person they don't even know (O.J., anyone?)
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41 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Baby Azaria Saga - The Case that gripped Australia March 31, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
I wish to make a commentry on the Lindy Chamberlain Case in general and in particular what it revealed about Australia as a society - There was not one person in the country who did not have a deeply held opinion on what actually happened to the poor baby on that tragic night in 1980. Rearding the film, I thought it was a work of pure genious. Although I had a deeply held interest in the Case before I saw the film, which makes me biased I suppose, there is no doubt in my mind that Meryl Streep gave her best perfromance to date in this film. She played the part of Lindy Chamberalin so well that attention is soon deflected from Meryl onto Lindy very early on into the film. That was certainly the case for me. Meryl melts so well into her study that you actually forget about Meryl altogether and get totally wrapped up in the plight of this tragic woman who faces the double nightmare of not only losing her baby in horrific circumstances but then facing the trauma of being paraded before an accusing nation for two painful years before finally winding up behind bars for a crome she did not commit, which the blood thirsty, bigoted morbid folk of Australia relished no end. Let me assure people who were not in Australia during this extrordinary period - The Chamberalin Case was not viewed simply as a legal matter to be sorted out in the Courts, rather it was a campaign against those who did not fit the conventional stereotype and who were out of line with mainstream thought. Lindy was merely the symbol of such people It could so easily have been a black person, a gay person etc. As a member of a Religion which most Australians viewed as a dangerous Cult and as a woman who did not act in a way most people viewed as "normal", she did not stand a chance form the very start. Read more ›
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Movie With A Timeless Theme May 14, 2004
Format:VHS Tape
Michael and Lindy Chamberlain (Sam Neill and Meryl Streep) must endure the double horror of having their infant baby carried off by a dingo and then being convicted in a-- forgive me-- kangaroo court of the child's death. This movie, which grips you early on and never lets you go, sad to say, is based on a true incident that occurred in Australia in 1980. The Chamberlains, who are devout Seventh-Day Adventists, are guilty of being different. They are tried by both the public and media. Hysteria and rumor run rampant while reason and justice get lost in a rush to judgment.
With the possible exception of IRON WEED, Meryl Streep has never made a bad movie. She is perfect here as the mother who has hope against hope that the truth will out and she will be found innocent. With an awful haircut-- the old bowl over your head look-- and the additional weight she apparently gained (she is pregnant during her trial) she manages to almost look plain and frumpy. Sam Neill as her fundamentalist minister husband gives an outstranding performance as well. The scenes of the Australian outback are beautiful.
The theme is timeless: too often to be different is to be evil. If you are different, then you are not a person; and I can ignore the evidence and find you guilty of heinous crimes. Unfortunately, the Austalians in 1980 were not unique in this disease. One only has to remember the recent debacle of innocent inmates on death row in Illinois who were found to be innocent with new DNA evidence. Then there's Julius and Ethel Rosenberg in the 1950's. There's still questions about whether they were guilty of the crimes for which they were executed. The list goes on and on.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling August 30, 2003
Format:DVD
"Cry In the Dark" is based on a true story about a disappearing baby. The mother maintains her claim that a dingo carried her baby daughter through the woods and killed her. As the country listens, rumors circulate that she killed her baby. The family either stays tighter knit or almost separates. Much drama occurs during the turmoil of losing a family member and being called the antichrist. Regardless of what's said in interviews, no one listens.
Meryl Streep deserved her eighth Oscar nomination for Best Actress as the accused mother. Streep gives much of her own nightmare thoughts into the screen. Just her expressed emotions are enough to give the audience chills while causing them to almost cry. Sam Neill gives the best performance of his career as the accusee's husband. All 350 acting extras also give great performance.
The writers greatly informed the audience of the real events. It digs deep into every characters' raw emotions. The director and the producers wonderfully led the cast and crew to their highest potential. This is one of the top ten best movies released in 1988. Its compelling theme will leave the audience with a sense of joy by the movie's end.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice
Excellent Film. Love Meryl Streep in everything she does, but this is definitely one of her greatest examples of being able to completely transform herself into a character.
Published 1 month ago by Karl H. Botterbrodt
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting Performance
I can't believe Meryl didn't win an Oscar for this performance. Everything about this movie is wonderful except the hair style of Meryl's character. Read more
Published 1 month ago by C. A. Neal
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it
Great classic
Published 2 months ago by Glenn Louis Syktich
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes you think...
I had seen this when it first came out, but didn't realize how much I had forgotten happened during the court process.
Published 5 months ago by Dawn Marshall
5.0 out of 5 stars A Cry in the Dark
Always an excellent performance by Meryl Streep in any movie. This is a true story that happened in Australia years back to which Dingo Dogs killed her baby, however she is... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Lavender
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Seller!
Excellent movie. Best yet. Have always loved movies and music. This is the best!
Thanks You always for giving me this.
Published 5 months ago by leslie
4.0 out of 5 stars Idiot wind
Forty years ago, Bob Dylan came up with a clever term for the stupid and venal Press we all must endure, comparing them to an "idiot wind". Read more
Published 6 months ago by Darren
5.0 out of 5 stars recommended
its a good movie for Meryl Streep's fan's. i am a fan of the actress, Meryl Streep and i am fan of her, i am amazed by this person, i am interested in this person. Read more
Published 6 months ago by kate dougherty
4.0 out of 5 stars very interesting movie.
Interesting to watch another country's judicial system at work especially during the time frame the movie projected. times do change.
Published 6 months ago by Sharon Baker Wilson
5.0 out of 5 stars An International Contender,
In the 90's I happened to be a guest to a producer at the Cannes Film Festival,
I also remember Spike Lee being there with his movie do the right thing.. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Mrs. International 2015
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