1968 was the year that changed the world. And for four young Aboriginal sisters from a remote mission this is the year that would change their lives forever. Around the globe, there was protest and revolution in the streets. Indigenous Australians finally secured the right to vote. There were drugs and the shock of a brutal assassination. And there was Vietnam.









Film information

Genre: , , ,
Starring: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Release date: Mar 22, 2013
MPAA rating: Rated PG-13 for sexuality, a scene of war violence, some language, thematic elements and smoking
Official website:
Runtime: 103 min
Movie Reviews:
  • 83
    Portland Oregonian - by M. E. Russell
    The movie unfolds in the uplifting manner you'd expect, but its real pleasures lie in its terrific '60s pop-soul soundtrack and especially in its frequently funny performances. more

  • 80
    Wall Street Journal - by Joe Morgenstern
    The Sapphires isn't flawless, but who cares? It's a joyous affair that's distinguished by its music, and by the buoyant spirit of its stars. more

  • 80
    The Hollywood Reporter - by Megan Lehmann
    An exuberant celebration of Aboriginality that fizzes with humor and heart; its soulfulness goes beyond the embrace of a jukebox full of Motown, Stax and Atlantic Records hits. more

  • 80
    Empire - by Anna Smith
    There are undeniable flaws, from cheesy dialogue to neglected subplots. But there’s something so lovable about The Sapphires’ enthusiasm, and powerful about its moments of tenderness. more

  • 75
    Miami Herald - by Connie Ogle
    This mostly upbeat crowd-pleaser soothes the audience with glistening harmonies and familiar songs and doesn’t always handle the ugly past simmering just below its surface gracefully. more

  • 75
    The Globe and Mail (Toronto) - by Michael Posner
    The group’s lead singer is Julie (Jessica Mauboy, an Australian R&B singer and runner-up on the fourth season of Australian Idol). You could drive an Abrams tank through the film’s plot holes, but you’ll likely be too busy enjoying yourself to bother. more

  • 75
    Chicago Sun-Times - by Nell Minow
    The Sapphires is clearly a labor of love for all involved. It's also a warm tribute to four women for whom success as performers was just the beginning. ...

  • 75
    USA Today - by Claudia Puig
    A potent combination of rousing music, appealing performances and an uplifting story renders this film-festival favorite nearly impossible to resist. more

  • 75
    New York Post - by Sara Stewart
    The upstart Sapphires are a smash to watch as they cover soul tunes like “I Heard It Through the Grapevine,” “What a Man” and “I Can’t Help Myself.” more

  • 75
    Rolling Stone - by Peter Travers
    You could call it an Aussie "Dreamgirls." I'd call it a blast of joy and music that struts right into your heart. more

  • 70
    Village Voice - by Chuck Wilson
    First-time director Wayne Blair and screenwriters Keith Thompson and Tony Briggs, adapting Briggs’ stage play, don’t shy away from the era’s social complexities, but they keep their eye on the ball, which in this case is the sweet pull of soul tune harmony. more

  • 70
    The New York Times - by A.O. Scott
    The raggedness of The Sapphires can’t be separated from its exuberant charm. Like the Sapphires themselves, the film is determined to muscle its way into your heart, which would have to be a lump of gristle to resist it. ...

  • 70
    Variety - by Guy Lodge
    Soul music’s alleged redemptive powers are fully at work in this jumbled, sketchily written but vastly appealing true-life musical comedy. more

  • 67
    Austin Chronicle - by Marjorie Baumgarten
    Exuberant but fairly formulaic. more

  • 67
    The A.V. Club - by Nathan Rabin
    The emotions of soul music are irresistibly universal. The same is true of soul-music clichés. Based on a true story, The Sapphires tells the tale of four ambitious young Aboriginal girls from Australia who come of age performing before American serviceman in 1968 Vietnam. And yet the film is afflicted by a curious lack of cultural specificity. more

  • 63
    St. Louis Post-Dispatch - by Joe Williams
    Draining most of the blood, sweat and tears from a true story, this music-minded movie capably covers a song we’ve heard a hundred times before. more

  • 63
    Boston Globe - by Ty Burr
    The movie has the indulgent fondness of a gift from a son to his talented mum and aunties. But it also feels the funk, and that’s what counts. more

  • 63
    Chicago Tribune - by Michael Phillips
    The script is corny and cliched and goes the way you expect it to go. But those things never stopped any movie from working with an audience. more

  • 63
    Movie Nation - by Roger Moore
    There’s more than a hint of the ‘90s Roddy Doyle adaptation “The Commitments” in all this – people far removed from Memphis and Detroit connecting to soul music on a spiritual level. more

  • 60
    Total Film - by Ellen E Jones
    A feelgooder spiced by social conscience, this is one of those underdog productions with potential to punch well above its weight. more

  • 58 - by Stephanie Zacharek
    The Sapphires may be your stock triumph-over-adversity show-biz story – but then, how is it that we never get tired of seeing that story? more

  • 58
    indieWIRE - by Eric Kohn
    Marred by excessive sentiment, it has a buoyancy and a hook that makes it stand out -- but they're elements that would help it kill on Broadway (as it already has on the Australian stage) a lot better than it does onscreen. more

  • 58
    The Playlist - by Kevin Jagernauth
    It's enjoyable and toe-tapping for what it is, but it's also extremely lightweight stuff. more

  • 50
    Philadelphia Inquirer - by Steven Rea
    A sloppy, sentimental story line and pivotal plot turns that are only sketchily realized undermine the life-on-the-road misadventures. more

  • 40
    Time Out New York - by Sam Adams
    The Sapphires might pass muster as escapist fluff, but its pretensions of significance go woefully awry. more

  • 38
    Slant Magazine - by
    Wayne Blair isn't interested in historical complexity or subtext, just the seamless flow of Hollywood-style storytelling that lazily connects one musical number to the next. more

Movie images
User Comments & Reviews

  1. tahyrabrown

    beautiful girls little sad but an awesome,fantastic,hilarious movie

  2. dmvillasana

    an honest and real story of 4 wonderful real women….how totally coollll.

  3. ultraomni

    OM freakin G!! A great movie and wonderful

  4. Lolly557

    wow. this was as good as i hoped it was going to be. finally a movie that didnt disappoint.

  5. brose94168

    Liked this movie A LOT. A different and interesting view of c. 1968 than what I’ve seen on film before — unique.