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The Sentimental Bloke


A better copy of the landmark Australian silent film also found here: The added royalty-free musical score is by Kevin MacLeod and is Creative Commons Attribution 3.0. If you reuse the film with the score please attribute using "Music: Kevin MacLeod" also please consider a small donation to Kevin MacLeod at his website -

The Sentimental Bloke (1919) is an Australian silent film based on the 1915 poem The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke by C.J. Dennis. It is generally considered the greatest Australian silent film, and one of the best Australian movies of all time.</>
It took a while for the film to be released as Australasian Films used to screen the movie in the Union Theatre chain. However it was seen by E.J. Carroll who decided to distribute it in Australia and overseas.
The Sentimental Bloke uses intertitles taken from the original poem written in Australian words and was a hit when it opened in Melbourne Town Hall on 4 October 1919, breaking all existing box office records. It was also popular in United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and New Zealand, but did not succeed in the U.S., where test audiences failed to understand the language. Despite being recut with Americanised intertitles, having some scenes cut out, and being renamed for the American market as The Story of a Tough Guy, it was withdrawn from distribution.</>


A 1952 fire in a Melbourne film library destroyed all but two boxes of film archives.<></> The boxes revealed a complete 35mm nitrate positive of The Sentimental Bloke, which the following year were sent to a Sydney laboratory for duplication on to new 16mm acetate stock. The original nitrate copies were believed to have been destroyed in the 1960s. The new print was screened at the 1955 Sydney Film Festival to great acclaim, although Longford was not invited, as the organisers did not realise he was still alive.
The film also screened at the 1987 Cannes Film Festival.< name=""></>
An original 35mm negative of the film was discovered in 1973 at the Film Archive at George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film in Rochester, New York. The canisters had been mislabelled as The Sentimental Blonde but were discovered by luck. The film was the U.S. version which had some scenes deleted and included intertitles for the American audience. It was however, a better quality print than any of the Australian copies, and provided a base for a complete restoration.
The National Film and Sound Archive commenced on a full restoration project for the film in 2000 using the various pieces of archive material available. The project included colour tinting as close as possible to the original. This 'new' version premiered at the 2004 Sydney Film Festival and has played at the 2005 London Film Festival. It has since been released as a two DVD set which includes a booklet describing the film's history.

See also

  • Cinema of Australia
  • List of films based on poems
  • Albert Arlen - composer of The Sentimental Bloke musical

  • Raymond Longford & Lottie Lyell by William M. Drew
  • The Sentimental Bloke at the National Film and Sound Archive
  • The Sentimental Bloke] at

    Category:Australian films
    Category:1919 films
    Category:Australian drama films
    Category:Australian silent films
    Category:Films based on novels
    Category:Black-and-white films
    Category:Films based on poems
    Category:Sentimental Bloke
    Category:Films directed by Raymond Longford
  • Raymond Longford

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