Bangkok Hilton (1989)

I watched and liked this four-hour Australian mini-series, I remembered my parents enjoying and talking about it when I was a kid. Exciting, good story, one of Nicole Kidman’s best acting performances in my opinion, she was very well picked and believable in the role of an inexperienced young woman.

The middle part was a little boring, but the series has a nail-biting ending. The whole story is a character builder for all the main people involved. The mini-series surprisingly hasn’t dated much, it held up and still felt fresh, maybe apart from the music and haircuts, which were pretty 80s/early 90s. Strange to see Hugo Weaving in such a normal part, as I knew him as larger than life Agent Smith in The Matrix.


It has an impressive rating of 8.0 on imdb



  1. Brilliant mini series. I well remember watching it on BBC1 as a kid and being traumatised for it. I bought it on DVD in the early 00s, in fact it was one of the first DVDs I ever bought. Must rewatch it again someday

    1. @Mark: Watching these grown up things as a kid does do that to us! Bangkok Hilton could make the viewer tentative about travelling abroad and trusting people. Prison films fascinate me, I even did a letterboxd list:

    2. I know that my mother, each time a news item reveals a Brit has been banged up abroad or is facing the lash or death penalty, always says 'did no one watch Bangkok Hilton?!'

    3. @Mark: Yeah, it’s a mini-series that stays with you for life and teaches you about the harshness of the world. I may have caught a glimpse of it in 1989 when I lived in the UK, then saw the entirety in my 20s.
      It sort of reminds me of Not Without My Daughter (1991), which likewise is impactful and cautionary about life abroad. I saw that one with Sally Field when I was in my teens. Don’t know if it holds up today, but it's haunted me for years.


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