I’ve always been a bit mystified about why everyone is so desperate to go to Australia, clearly the weather is good and the scenery looks nice, but I’ve always been convinced that it seems like an ultimately unpleasant place – the wildlife and weather will kill you dead in no time at all and all the people seem to be violently psychopathic, alcoholic racists who will stab your spine out as soon as look at you.
I’m prepared to admit that this rather jaundiced view could be the result of watching too many films – and Australian cinema is as harsh as a bleach cocktail and grittier than sand in the foreskin.
Sit down to a weekend marathon of Wake in Fright, Ghosts of the Civil Dead, Animal Kingdom, The Proposition, Mad Max, Snowtown, Wolf Creek, and Chopper – you can watch Babe as many times as you like after that lot, you won’t want to go to Australia, in fact you may not want to leave the house.
Still, it should be remembered that very scary and intense places tend to make for really good films. So the news that the writer/director of the bleak and oppressive Animal Kingdom, David Michod, is making a near-future western in the Australian desert is very exciting indeed.
The lone man and sidekick against a crazy gang plot synopsis sounds reminiscent of the first Mad Max film (the oft delayed 4th sequel to which is being made at the moment as well), but I imagine with extra levels of harshness and grit. Guy Pierce is in it along with that bloke from the Twilight flicks who seems utterly desperate to get as far away from gloomy Emo vampires as he can in the shortest possible time. Can’t say I blame him, but he’s not going to help himself with this sort of actor-ly blather when asked about The Rover:
“It’s very existential. It’s really interesting. I couldn’t really explain to you what it’s about but it’s sort of about how much pain can the world take and how much disgust and cruelty before love dies. I think that’s kind of what it’s about.”
There’s not much info out yet about The Rover in terms of trailers or posters, so here’s the trailer for Wake In Fright instead, which I imagine the Australian Tourist board won’t be endorsing just yet…