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A Far Off Place

4.7 out of 5 stars 138 customer reviews

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(Jun 01, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Walt Disney Pictures and Amblin Entertainment team up to deliver a thrilling story, action-packed adventure, and breathtaking scenery! Thrown together under incredible circumstances, two strangers must discover courage and strength when they begin a journey across the treacherous African desert! Equipped with only their wits and the expertise of a native bushman who befriends them, they are determined to triumph over impossible odds and reach their destination. But along the way, the trio face a primitive desert wilderness teeming with deadly obstacles, including wild animals, ruthless poachers, and severe weather conditions!

Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Reese Witherspoon, Sarel Bok, Maximilian Schell, Robert Burke, Daniel Gerroll
  • Directors: Juan Ruiz-Anchia, Mikael Salomon
  • Writers: Robert Caswell, Jonathan Hensleigh, Sally Robinson
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.1)
  • 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: Walt Disney Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: June 1, 2004
  • Run Time: 107 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (138 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001I562S
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,966 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "A Far Off Place" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I've voiced my displeasure at the current state of Disney movies before and pointed out how vastly different they are in the 21st Century to movies that were made as recently as the 90s.

Reese Witherspoon plays Nonnie Parker and Ethan Embry her reluctant friend Harry. Both kids are living with their parents in rural Africa when their home is attacked by Ivory poachers. With their bushman friend Xhabbo as a guide the kids take off across the Kalahari desert to reach the safety of the coast and nearest town, while the poachers plan to kill off their only witnesses.

A Far Off Place opens with the massacre of a herd of elephants. The killers themselves are then mercilessly gunned down by supporting hero Col. Theron. Would Disney DARE allow a scene like this in the 21st Century? Look at the quality of Tim Allen's The Shaggy Dog and you'll find your answer. For any family-orientated movie it takes some nerve to open with killing such as this but even 16-year-old Nonnie herself is at ease yielding a rifle and doesn't hesitate to blow-up bad guys.

The African desert scenery is gorgeous and director Mikael Salomon (who also made the underrated Hard Rain) fills the movie with lovely cinematography. The dunes, the blue sky, the night sky...it all makes you wish for a sunny holiday.

A Far Off Place (a combination of two novels "A Story Like the Wind" and "A Far-Off Place" by Laurens Van der Post) is not a well known movie and is quite hard to find, but it's worth hunting down. A shame that such a good movie has fallen off the radar.
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Format: DVD
This is one fo my favorite movies ever. I saw this movie for the first time when I was seven. My brother and I used to rent it about once a month growing up. It's honestly, Reese Witherspoon's best and most honest character role besides in Cruel Intentions. This movie shows the real heart of two kids faced with hardship and struggle and their amazing journey across the Kalahari. Nowadays, I catch it every time it's on cable. I even try to do the tongue click thing like Kabu.
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Format: VHS Tape
Mikael Salomon's "A Far Off Place" is a marvelous example of how skilled direction and production can turn a good story into a great film. Performances in the major roles are all excellent, and Ethan Embry's portrayal of the disgruntled, fish-out-of-water city boy forced into the wilds of Africa walks a delicate line (between authentic teenage muddle-headedness and just plain obnoxiousness) beautifully.
Critics may claim the film is a little two-dimensional, and in fairness, they are right. But by not trying to make the film too grand through obvious artifice, the good performances and great scenery let this film become memorable in a simple, direct way that's very much in harmony with the essence of the story: we don't always get to choose our circumstances, and how we react in those times may literally become a matter of life and death.
Two other minor themes help make this a favorite: the Reese Witherspoon character is a great role model for any young girl - sensitive and feminine without being a wimpy or dependent ingrate; and a rare and even-handed portrayal of the firearm as a tool - no better or worse than the purpose to which it is put by a human master.
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By Ben on August 8, 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this movie. It was a fun idea, and although was not protrayed as realistic (i.e. you would not come out of the desert looking as good as they did) it was a film created for entertainment value.
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By A Customer on August 13, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
Lots of action in this movie...kept my family and my eyes glued to the screen. Beautiful Reese Witherspoon and Ethan Embry are both talented young teen actors. They both did an excellent job of portraying their characters in this movie. Good movie for the whole family.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is the first movie I can remember seeing Reese in. I have loved it and her ever since. This movie made me fall in love with Africa. This is a great family film to watch but does have some sad parts so if having little kids watch it be ready if tears happen, or even if you are an adult you might shed a tear or two. This has great friendships in it.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
An excellent movie even though the initial tragedy is rather hard. The story is good for 10-14 year olds I think. The characters show excellent courage and set a good example of working through the difficulties that life has given them. Good ending to the story as well. Tried to read the book but it is long and very detailed. Liked the DVD much better.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a great movie that I've seen many times but only had the VCR so ordered the DVD so I'd have it to watch AGAIN. Came on the date promised. I think everyone would love this movie from kids to adults.
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