10 Aussie films you should watch
THERE may be many Australian films that have grossed well at the box office, but the best thing about Australian movies is the heavy emphasis on localised humour and exploring exclusively Australian themes.
There are many Australian-made films that only Australians can appreciate.
With the much-anticipated Aussie film Last Cab to Darwin screening at the Moncrieff Entertainment Centre in Bundaberg from August 20, to pay tribute to our antipodean chums we've chronologically reviewed a few less-well-known or forgotten but true cinema classics from Down Under.
Storm Boy (1977)
After nurturing him as a chick, young Storm Boy forms a friendship with a wild pelican, Mr Percival, while living with his grumpy, radio and modern world-hating father Hide-Away Tom, in the wind-swept wilderness of the Coorong in South Australia.
The boy meets and forms a friendship with Fingerbone Bill, who guides him to an understanding of the locale and its creatures.
BMX Bandits (1983)
Nicole Kidman, in her first big-screen appearance. A trio of bored, BMX-riding kids set off on a fishing trip and they stumble instead upon a cache of stolen police walkie-talkies, originally swiped by a murderous gang of bank robbers, with whom they soon become entangled. Ending in a memorable escape down the Manly Waterworks water slides.
The Sum of Us (1994)
Three years before he became a household name in Hollywood, Russell Crowe plays Jeff Mitchell, a young gay man and the son of widower Harry Mitchell (Jack Thompson). The two live together while they both search for a special someone with whom to spend their lives. And while Harry is more than comfortable with Jeff's sexuality, his new lady friend isn't, leading to tension and a personal struggle for Harry.
The Castle (1997)
Little known outside Australia, this micro-budget comedy - the film debut of Aussie export Eric Bana - follows the Kerrigan family as they try to keep their gaudily bedecked family home from being bought up and demolished by the expanding Melbourne Airport… It's going straight to the pool room.
Paperback Hero (1998)
Country truck driver Jack Willis (Hugh Jackman) has written a romance novel. Fearing ridicule from his mates, Jack uses a pen-name, that of his long-time friend Ruby Vale (Claudia Karvan), a crop- dusting pilot and cafe owner. Trouble brews when he lands a book deal and the publisher wants to meet "her".
Two Hands (1999)
The success of Pulp Fiction left literally hundreds of consciously hip crime movies in its wake, but few were as successful as Two Hands. Following the bumbling exploits of would-be criminal Jimmy (Heath Ledger), the film is most notable for its hilarious turn from Bryan Brown as King's Cross mob boss Pando. It also launched the careers of Ledger and the ridiculously pretty Rose Byrne.
Tall, scruffy and unmotivated, Mick Molloy is Jack Simpson, an over-educated, under- utilised inner-city slacker bloke, only happy when he is scamming the local lawn bowls club for car parks. That is until his bluff is called by the Cityside Lawn Bowls executive Jack. There is lot to like about this Australian comedy.
Splashdown's manager of its port-a-loo business, Kenny Smyth (Shane Jacobson), is proud to explain the nitty gritty of his work even if he gets frustrated by the reactions of other people to his job. When Kenny gets to go to the "pumpers" toilet convention in Nashville on his first plane trip, he meets sympathetic flight attendant Jackie Sheppard. But calamity at home quickly brings him back to earth.
Mystery Road (2013)
Indigenous cowboy detective Jay Swan (Aaron Pederson) returns to his outback home town, to solve the murder of a teenage girl, whose body is found under the highway trucking route out of town. Alienated from both the white-dominated police force and his own community, Jay stands alone in his determination to fight back for his town and his people.
Last Cab to Darwin (2015)
Based upon the true story of taxi driver Max Bell who was diagnosed with terminal stomach cancer in the early 1990s. Rex (Michael Caton) is a loner, and when he's told he doesn't have long to live, he embarks on an epic drive through the Australian outback from Broken Hill to Darwin to die on his own terms; but his journey reveals to him that before you can end your life, you have to live it, and to live it, you've got to share it.
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