A Cry in the Dark

A Cry in the Dark

Fred Schepisi (1988)

15 Certificate


Our Score
This is an absolutely riveting and at times harrowing dramatisation of the bizarre real-life story of Lindy Chamberlain, who claimed her baby was killed by a dingo at Ayers Rock in 1980. The movie covers a huge amount of ground: Aboriginal myths, the Chamberlains' Seventh Day Adventism, the media circus and the way the case challenged the legal system and obsessed Australians for years. Meryl Streep was cast as Lindy because Streep then tended to get most major parts. But her performance, in a black wig and with a wholly convincing accent, is one of her best, a portrait of a tough, humourless woman who eventually earns our sympathy and pity. Sam Neill as her morose preacher husband is equally impressive. The material could have made for a dreadfully insincere TV movie, but Fred Schepisi's direction is clear-headed and unsensational, and the result is a great achievement for Schepisi and producer Verity Lambert.


Fact-based Australian drama about a deeply religious mother who was accused of murdering her baby, despite her insistence that a wild dog carried the child off. As she battles to prove her innocence, the media quickly leap to the conclusion that she is guilty, making her the target of violent and vitriolic attacks. Starring Meryl Streep, Sam Neill, Bruce Myles, Charles Tingwell and Nick Tate.

Cast & Crew

Lindy Chamberlain Meryl Streep
Michael Chamberlain Sam Neill
Barker Bruce Myles
Justice Muirhead Charles Tingwell
Charlwood Nick Tate
Phillips Neil Fitzpatrick
Barritt Maurie Fields
Tipple Lewis Fitz-Gerald
Director Fred Schepisi
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Cannon Releasing UKGuidance: Contains swearing and brief nudity.Available on: video and DVD