Movie Recommendation Australian Style

Posted by WhenYourGodGivesYouLemons On 12:15 PM

I live in Australia and I feel that I should try to support good Australian games and movies whenever they come out. Unfortunately they are sometimes few and far between but for the most part when there's an Australian movie I like, I really like it. Probably three of my favourite movies, all for different reasons are Dirty Deeds, The Proposition and Last Train to Freo.

Lets start with Dirty Deeds, an Australian gangster flick set during the Vietnam War. It has a great cast including Aussie screen legends Sam Neill, Bryan Brown and Toni Collette as well as future Hollywood bigshot Sam Worthington. Through in American John Goodman and there are some good performances here. Brown's character Barry Ryan is an Aussie gangster who controls pokie machines, Worthington plays his nephew Darcy who comes back from the Vietnam War to work for him and Goodman plays a member of the East Coast Mafia looking to bring in new pokie machines to Australia. I loved this film for the soundtrack, the actors and the opening scene when Brown and his gang go into a pub with a rivals pokie machines and proceed to smash them with sledgehammers whilst Dirty Deeds by AC/DC plays in the background. There's a lot of humour in the film, usually tongue in cheek and John Goodman's search for a pizza in Australia is hilarious. This film showed Australia had a criminal underbelly long before Underbelly did.

The Proposition would have to be favourite Australian film of all time. Written by legendary musician Nick Cave it has all the dark and brooding energy from his songs transferred onto the big screen. Once again the film is filled with an excellent cast including John Hurt, Guy Pearce, Ray Winstone, Danny Huston and Davin Wenham. Guy Pearce's character Charley was part of the Burns gang who raped and murdered an outback family in the 19th century. These guys were no Ned Kelly, they were brutal criminals through and through. When Charley and his younger brother Mikey are captured by Captain Stanley (Winstone) he presents Charley with a proposition, find and bring in your older brother Arthur (Huston) and I'll let you go. The film is filled with beautiful yet relentless scenery, with the Outback heat exploding off the screen. It's filled with brutal and confronting violence in this setting where nobody is an angel and everyone has a dark side and once again it's filled with amazing performance from Huston, Pearce and Winstone. Cave did a remarkable job with the screenplay and it creates a memorable Australian Western more brutal and unforgiving than we are use to and all the better for it. A Western action film equal to any Clint Eastwood movie.

The last film I like is the Last Train to Freo. The reason for this is because I catch the train quite regularly and it's frigteningly similar to the stories and scenes I've either seen or heard on the train. A relative low budget arthouse film I did not recognise any of the cast yet they still gave quite good performances. As the title suggests the film is focused around the last train ride of the day to Fremantle, with the film taking place entirely in this one carrage. The train is boarded by a couple of thugs, one of them the lead actor Steve Le Marquand. As soon as they enter the train a sense of fear, tension and suspense begins to build as you are unsure of what these guys will do and Le Marquand controls everything from here on. As Le Marquand interacts with the other members on the train you are glued to the screen as the clear cut images of the other passages begin to unravel. Everyone is not who they seem and it is a stunning cinematic realisation of the public transport experience albeit a little more dramatic than real life. A great film for those who enjoy the arthouse scene but it may deter you from catching the train anytime soon such is the powerful spectacle that is Last Train to Freo.



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