Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1990s Shine (1996)

Shine (1996)

Australia in the 1950s: the young David Helfgott excels at the piano, but his domineering father forbids him to accept a scholarship to study further. David struggles to escape his father’s restrictions and travels to England, where his genius is recognised.

But then he suffers a setback that will change his life forever.

ShineAlthough reservations have been expressed about the accuracy of the “facts” in this film based on the life of gifted but deeply troubled Australian pianist David Helfgott, the resulting drama is still an exhilarating and uplifting screen experience.

While it was Geoffrey Rush who took many of the plaudits, including the best actor Oscar for his stunning performance as Helfgott, it’s the cinematic acumen of director Scott Hicks that prevents this often harrowing story from turning into melodramatic mush.

From the overlooked Noah Taylor as the young Helfgott, Googie Withers as the writer who launched Helfgott’s career through to Lynn Redgrave as the future wife who saved him, the performances are of an extraordinary quality, with an astonishing screen debut from stage star Rush as the mumbling musician.

David Helfgott 
Geoffrey Rush
Peter
Armin Mueller-Stahl
David Helfgott (adolescent)
Noah Taylor
Gillian
Lynn Redgrave
Cecil Parkes
John Gielgud
Katharine Susannah Prichard
Googie Withers
Sylvia
Sonia Todd
Ben Rosen
Nicholas Bell
Tony
Justin Braine
Sam
Chris Haywood
Ray
Marc Warren

Director
Scott Hicks