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Lucky Country 2009
Description: 1902....the Australian Federation is a year old. Twelve year-old Tom's father, Nat, has dragged him and his sister, Sarah, to an isolated farm at the edge of the woods. But Nat's dream of living off the land has died and he is losing his grip on sanity. When three ex-soldiers arrive at their cabin one night Tom, like his father, believes they are providence.
Released: 21 May 2013 Director: Kriv Stenders Writers: Andy Cox Actors: Aden Young, Toby Wallace, Hanna Mangan Lawrence, Pip Miller Genres: Drama, History, Thriller
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Lucky Country Reviews:

Attended critic's screening today (10/06/09), of this film. Visually, the cinematography is very reminiscent of "Ned Kelly" (both Mick Jagger and Heath Ledger) . Powerful test of the emotive lighting and colours of the Australian bush. Enjoyed the performances of the two younger cast members, whilst finding the characters you were mean't to search scary, were really scary. If you are seeking a satisfied ending, this movie is not really for you. In fact, it is very much the storyline of how twisted and cruel mankind becomes, when lured by the temptation of gold and riches. The end of the movie is left somewhat open, so the viewer can take the time to consider what may have happened beyond the storyline presented. Musical score is extremely effective.


I took my son to see this film at the Australian Cinema Festival at the London Barbican earlier this year and we were both really moved by it. The whole theatre was gasping for breath at the end and many had tears in their eyes. Very strong stuff. We instantly ordered the DVD to share with mates here.I felt compelled to write a review after seeing an earlier posting and reading back through some of the reviews of the movie on another sites, to search either thoughtful praise on the one hand or vitriolic ranting on the other, and this was a curious thing because it's really a very simple, strong film.I'm old enough to remember the reactions to Wake in Fright. Actually regarded as an Australian classic the first responses were an explosion of anger. I left Australia for the UK a several years after and everytime felt that we had an almost pathological inability as a nation to shine a light on ourselves, and that's really what this movie is doing. Being a regular at the London Australian Movie Festival I've watched with some pride the change event with brave independent movies over the last several years, scratching at the surface of the Australian national psyche, and was very saddened to search in some of the Australian reviews the same old knee-jerk disdain for intellect and anything that doesn't paint the country in a noble light. Certainly the multiple ironies at work in the hero who tells the unbelievable line 'bet you thought it was going to be all Henry bloody Lawson' seem to have gone over the heads of some people.Watching the DVD extras I found there was a various opening that was taken out - why isn't explained - that sets up the characters better: the mother is show in the original and the movie actually appears to begin ten mins in. This may support some folks access the movie a tiny easier, but regardless of this the movie works so magnificently as a dark, visceral thriller anyway that it's really difficult to see how folks should have a difficult time with it unless they're responding with a political agenda. I notice that Christos Tsiolkas is receiving the same type of responses for The Slap and in an interview in today's Guardian he celebrates this, telling that if you can transport an audience to those extremes of anger on one side and thoughtful praise on the another you're doing something right because you're forcing people's insecurities to the surface. The filmmakers of Lucky Country could be equally proud and I wouldn't be at all surprised if this brave movie finds itself being lauded in a several years' time in the same method Wake in Fright has been.For anybody interested in a genuinely thoughtful dialogue about Australia and Australians' zone in it this really is a must-see. And if you happen to like unusual thrillers with nice visual beauty and a considerable amount of menace this movie is for you.


Screenwriter Andy Cox proves here that you can create an effective movie from a very easy but strong theme. The script is superbly executed with powerful dialogue and many plot twists and turns that hold the audience interested. The direction makes the audience feel like they are now in the movie through the test of closeups and hand held shots and the cinematography certainly takes advantage of the Australian outback. The performances from the cast were powerful and I was particularly impressed by newcomer Toby Wallace. I also really liked the ending of this film because it was various from another movies, ie it leaves you guessing what might happen from then on.



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