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Broken Hill (2009)

Alexa Vega , Timothy Hutton , Dagen Merrill  |  PG |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Alexa Vega, Timothy Hutton, Rhys Wakefield, Andy McPhee, Luke Arnold
  • Directors: Dagen Merrill
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Entertainment One
  • DVD Release Date: May 17, 2011
  • Run Time: 102 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #111,880 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Born and raised on an Australian sheep ranch, Tommy (Luke Arnold) dreams of becoming a great musician. Everything changes, though, when his antics to impress his beautiful classmate Kat (Alexa Vega) backfire and land them both in trouble. But after auditioning for an elite music academy, Tommy is given the second chance he needs to win Kat’s affection, his father’s approval and the opportunity of a lifetime.

Bonus Feature:
Audio commentary with Writer / Director Dagen Merrill, Producer Chris Wyatt and Alexa Vega.

A handsome high-school senior aspires to become a classical composer in this tuneful drama. Tommy (Luke Arnold, who recalls Venezuelan conductor Gustavo Dudamel) lives on an Australian sheep ranch with his widowed father, George (Timothy Hutton), a stern soccer coach, and nurses a crush on exchange student Kat (Alexa Vega, Spy Kids), who barely knows he exists. One night, Tommy and George come across escaped convict Kalae (Che Timmons) on their drive home. They turn the unconscious man over to the police, and get on with their lives. Later, when Kat finds out that Tommy has access to a truck, she convinces him to chauffeur her around during a night of vandalism, which lands him in jail, where he reconnects with Kalae, who tells him about a prison choir. Upon Tommy's release, he convinces Kat to help him form a convict band in order to fulfill their community service requirement and to facilitate his entrance into Sydney's prestigious Music Conservatorium. At first, the inexperienced duo attract only two participants, but other inmates eventually materialize, and as their repertoire takes shape, Kat's hard shell softens. Unfortunately, Tommy has to cancel their performance at Broken Hill when a prisoner goes missing, but Kat and the other players convince him to try again. The conclusion feels more like wish fulfillment than a realistic outcome, but director Dagen Merrill does depict Tommy's daydreams at times, so it seems rather fitting. Extra features include commentary from Merrill, producer Chris Wyatt, and a sleepy Vega. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Academy award winner Timothy Hutton headed down under and portrayed a very convincing grumpy passionate Aussie sheep farmer at odds with his musically gifted son. The way father and son came back together, separated and then reunited through music is heartwarming and realistic. The music is brilliant. The outback scenes are stunning. The drama that turns to romance between Luke Arnold (Tommy) and Spy Kids star Alexa Vega (Kat) is a treat. The plot moves steadily to a wonderful climax with plenty of subplots and subtle themes to keep you thinking and enjoying at the same time. Thumbs up to the writer, director, producer and cast. (What's with the horse on the DVD cover???? Tommy rides a motor bike not a horse. Whatever!?!?)
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must see! May 18, 2011
By tahoe12
This film was utterly entertaining and a feel good movie as well. You will be rooting for the likeable and adorable main character Tommy who has big dreams that seem impossible to achieve given his circumstances. I promise that the ending will leave you smiling and feeling insprired.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review for really picky (or conservative) people!! November 4, 2012
Format:Amazon Instant Video
This was an amazing movie, I love the music. Good story.

Picky people remarks:
Tommy goes out with a crazy group of young people and throws watermelons at garbage cans, cars, through windows, etc...
Tommy signs a sheet that says they did more community service time than they really did
NO bad words
When a strange man keeps staring at her, the girl says "I don't know what prostitute I remind you of, but just stop it!"- turns out she reminded the man of his daughter that he desperately wanted to see again.
That was literally ALL the slightly questionable material there was---------if you don't mind a couple kisses :)

Great movie, I absolutely loved it!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's great if you love music April 23, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Well, at first sight (looking at the poster or DVD cover etc) this might not have been a movie I would have gone out of my way to see, or buy the DVD of, but it's funny how destiny works. I was on a Jetstar flight from Tokyo to Australia and on the entertainment unit there was a choice of different genres for movies, one genre being "home movies" or some title like that, meaning movies made in Australia with Australian stories, so I clicked on that, and there were the usual ones, "Priscilla Queen of the Desert", "The Castle", "The Dish", "Australia", "Muriel's Wedding" etc, all of which I have seen many times and love, but there was this "Broken Hill" too, which I had never heard of, so I gave it a try, and straight away it blew my mind because of the music aspect of it (and it starts straight away with the music). Because this is the kind of music I was planning to write almost 30 years ago, and never quite got around to, my life taking me in other artistic directions, so I'm glad someone else has had the same ideas and put them down to paper and has had the opportunity to have orchestras and other players perform it. It is truly beautiful.

Anyway, to make a long story short, the plot is a bit lame, and the highschool setting too (as all highschool set movies are), but if you love music, and the composing aspect of it, and the possibilities that everyday sounds can offer to your ears and to your imagination, plus if you also love the Australian outback, this is a great movie. The actors are doing a good job too.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful film with a message June 22, 2011
By Cynthia
I loved this film. The music, the scenary, the filming was beautiful. It's a movie we enjoy watching over and over. Teens especially will relate but there is a message for everyone who has a family - which is all of us. Timothy Hutton is always worth the price of admission. Definately a winner!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Broken Hill equals Healed Hearts July 30, 2014
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
good movie and well worth the time to watch it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great movie, really injoyed it. June 24, 2014
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
Really enjoyed this film even though I have seen it several times. The acting, the story line, was really put together well.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Broken Hill May 6, 2014
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
We really enjoy this very unique film. The Aussie line of the story, the compassion of the characters, the invention of musici from unauthentic instruments. It's just a joy to see and listen to, especially the ending concert.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Love this movie! Was delivered in great condition!!
Published 1 month ago by Kiatori
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story line
Product was on time and in working order.
Published 2 months ago by cmpblltmr
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
okay movie it was a little boring to me.
Published 2 months ago by Gabriela N Umana
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
What a wonderful movie this was. Luke Arnold played his part perfectly. It is a safe movie for children and adults and it is highly interesting especially for those who love music!
Published 9 months ago by B.M.
5.0 out of 5 stars Refreshingly different than everything else out there
A different story line than most movies. It was refreshing and inspiring! I loved the cast and the ideas behind everything.
Published 11 months ago by E. George
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie
Love the setting of the movie, also the workings of the sheep station. The characters were very engaging, and the music and story were very heartwarming. Read more
Published 12 months ago by SUZANNA RIEDL
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun Movie
It's fun to see Alexa grown up, and she plays a great role in this movie. The movie is done so well, we love watching it over again. Read more
Published 13 months ago by jrnylst
5.0 out of 5 stars How do great movies like this slip under the radar?
This is one of those amazing 'little movies" that few people ever hear about but those who do LOVE it,
Dagen Merrill, writer Director is a talent to watch !!
Published 13 months ago by Kieth W. Merrill
5.0 out of 5 stars Awsome
I thought it was great. I tryed looking everywhere in Australia for it but could not. I was so excited when i saw it because my daughter and i were extras in the cast. Read more
Published 17 months ago by tweety22au
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