For a country whose modern (western) history is based on the now discredited legal concept of ‘terra nullius’ the idea of invasion must be a deep rooted cultural threat, with a twist of ironic karma.

‘Tomorrow, when the war began’ is an Aussie movie which examines just such an invasion.

Mixed in with some teenage coming of age and a decent nod to American 80s cold war paranoia fuelled movie ‘Red Dawn’.

With the invasion happening on Australia Day the overtures to the previous invasion of the continent are strong shadows throughout the film.

The film starts as a teenage adventure in the wild, but quickly becomes a tale of teenagers finding how far they will go to battle the invaders.

The movie is well crafted, balancing action with character progression.

It fits into the history of Australian cinema which is edgy, questioning and watchable – think ‘Rabbit Proof Fence’, ‘Picnic at Hanging Rock’, ”Walkabout’ or even ‘Two Hands or ‘Strange Planet’.

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Not that the story is original, but the Hunger Games has managed to stop an Aussie film along the same lines from being made.

I haven’t seen Hunger Games yet, nor the original movie this Aussie production was a remake of, but I am a fan of Aussie film, so this was of interest to me…

Animal Kingdom

October 11, 2010

I’ll let you in to a little secret.

I quite like Aussie cinema.

I know, I must be a bit of a weirdo.

But BMX Bikers, Emerald City are all a bit of fun (both feature the early career of a certain Nicole Kidman) – Picnic at Hanging Rock and Walkabout are a bit surreal and could do with a re-imagining, but are still pretty good movies all told.

Muriel’s Wedding is strangely lovely (and I still go thru phases of saying: “you’re terrible Muriel”) and Priscilla Queen of the Desert has some awesome cinematography in it.

Sample People is pretty good too, an ensemble melodrama, this time set in the Sydney club scene. And Kylie in a red wig somehow works for me.

While Strange Planet, despite being an (again) ensemble melodrama, is one of my top 10 movies of all time.

And one that has come out this year I’m really hoping to catch at some point – probably on DVD is Animal kingdom.

Nick Bryant, one of my fav bloggers wrote a column about it earlier this year (before his column got dominated by the Aussie election).

So check out Animal Kingdom (and maybe some of the others). When I get to see it I’ll post something about on this blog.

Why do I like Aussie cinema? I think because a lot of the time you get good movies but without all the Hollywood schmaltz.

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