Hotel Sorrento

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Hotel Sorrento
Hotel Sorrento poster.jpg
VHS Cover
Directed by Richard Franklin
Produced by Richard Franklin
Written by Peter Fitzpatrick
Richard Franklin
Based on Hotel Sorrento (play) by
Hannie Rayson
Starring Caroline Goodall
Caroline Gillmer
Tara Morice
Music by Nerida Tyson-Chew
Cinematography Geoff Burton
Edited by David Pulbrook
Distributed by Umbrella Entertainment
Release date
14 July 1995
Running time
112 minutes
Country Australia
Language English

Hotel Sorrento is a 1995 Australian drama film directed by Richard Franklin. Three sisters reunite in the sleepy Australian town of Sorrento after a ten-year hiatus.[1] One of the three has written a book called Melancholy which is a thinly disguised version of their lives. The film is an adaptation of Hannie Rayson's play of the same name.[2]

"One of the film's many fleeting reflections is an exploration of the word “melancholy” - a word that perfectly suits Hotel Sorrento's tone and pace."[3]



Richard Franklin had worked for a number of years in the US, although he had lived in Australia since 1985. He was becoming frustrated with Hollywood and decided to make a film for the "art house market". He contacted his brother in law, Peter Fitzgerald, who had written a number of books on Australian theatre and asked him to recommend an Australian play which might make a good film. Fitzpatrick put forward Hotel Sorrento and Franklin loved it.[4] He made the movie having never seen a production of the play.[5]

Critical reception[edit]

The New York Times said that "The film is steeped in a homey provincial atmosphere that is at once comforting and stifling, and that gives some substance to the talk about the complacency and materialism of Australian society and its indifference to artists."[1] Cinephilia said "The play by Hannie Rayson, with its familiar typology of characters and Chekovian dialogue, no doubt provided pleasing entertainment in its original stage setting but as adapted by Franklin with Peter Fitzpatrick and transposed the big screen this story of a fraught family reunion of sorts looks like soapie material blown out of proportion (Meg’s line “I’m looking for Dick” is pure Number 96, albeit unintentionally so)."[6]


Award Category Subject Result
AACTA Awards
(1995 AFI Awards)
Best Film Richard Franklin Nominated
Best Direction Nominated
Best Adapted Screenplay Won
Peter Fitzpatrick Won
Best Actress Caroline Goodall Nominated
Caroline Gillmer Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Ray Barrett Won
Ben Thomas Nominated
Best Editing David Pulbrook Nominated
Best Original Music Score Nerida Tyson-Chew Nominated
Best Sound James Harvey Nominated
Glenn Newnham Nominated
Roger Savage Nominated
Gareth Vanderhope Nominated
ASM Award Best Original Music for a Feature Film Nerida Tyson-Chew Won
FCCA Award Best Music Score Won
Tokyo International Film Festival Tokyo Grand Prix Richard Franklin Nominated

Box office[edit]

Hotel Sorrento grossed $1,215,478 at the box office in Australia.[7]

Home media[edit]

Hotel Sorrento was released on DVD by Umbrella Entertainment in September 2012. The DVD is compatible with all region codes and includes special features such as the trailer, audio commentary with Richard Franklin and a featurette titled Inside Hotel Sorrento.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Holden, Stephen (26 May 1995). "Hotel Sorrento (1995)". New York Times. Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  2. ^ "Hotel Sorrento". Answers.Com. n.d. Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  3. ^ Buckmaster, Luke (18 December 1999). "Hotel Sorrento (1995)". In Film Australia. Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  4. ^ Richard Franklin, "Returning Home", Cinema Papers, June 1995 p24-27,57
  5. ^ "Interview with Richard Franklin", Signet, 15 September 1995 accessed 18 November 2012
  6. ^ "Hotel Sorrento". cinephilia. n.d. Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  7. ^ Film Victoria - Australian Films at the Australian Box Office
  8. ^ "Umbrella Entertainment". Retrieved 9 May 2013. 

External links[edit]