Quick recap: The story takes place in the Australian outback, at the turn of the century. Sybylla is a free-spirited young woman who dreams of one day becoming a writer. Her family tries their best to convince her that the only way to be happy is to snag a guy and get married. Sybylla is having none of that and continues on her merry way, thankyouverymuch. She eventually falls in love with Harry, a rich young man. She must now choose between a life of marriage and kids or her BRILLIANT CAREER. (spoiler alert: she chooses the career. Otherwise this would be ‘My Brilliant Hobby that I Eventually Gave Up Because Dr.Grant From Jurassic Park Fell In Love With Me.)
Fun (?) Fact: My brain thought it would be fun to have me read everything in an Australian accent, hours after watching this movie. I did feel a tad more sophisticated, so I’m not complaining.
My thoughts: ‘Keep an open mind’, I told myself, after reading the description of the movie. And then in the first 5 minutes of the movie Sybylla announces to herself, ‘My brilliant career!’, and I rolled my eyes so far back into my head that it gave me a headache.
But onward I pressed to complete this movie and add it to my list. It did eventually get better and I found myself rooting for Sybylla and her wild ways. Throughout the film Sybylla regards herself as plain and ugly and she pulls it off. Not like a certain teen movie where a girl is considered plain and ugly until she takes off her glasses, wears her hair down and trades her overalls for a dress. I learned after watching the movie that the story is based off a novel with the same name, written in the early 20th century. Knowing that tidbit made me appreciate the ‘feminist’ viewpoint a little more. Sybylla has many great lines about her beliefs on marriage but my favorite is when she announces that she doesn’t want to be a ‘part of anyone’. She wants to be her own person. Awesome. 21st century Me finds it hard to believe that she really would have to give up everything once she got married, but in context I suppose it’s true. One thing that especially stuck out for me is the main fact that Sybylla has no brilliant career. There are several shots of her writing and once can assume it is a passion of hers, but there are also scenes of her announcing that she wants to become a world class pianist. It isn’t until the final scene that you finally see her finishing the manuscript and sending it off. More power to her to chase her dreams but I wouldn’t call it a brilliant career just yet. The novel looks rather boring anyway.
Final review: 2/5. It’s a nice little film with a good message for girls. It might not hurt if I showed my son this one day so that he understands that he too can be a complete person all by himself. As for me, I was mostly bored. Except for the accents. And Dr.Grant.
Where I watched it: Netflix instant
Up next: The Red Shoes