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    January 2, 2009

    AUSTRALIA

    English - (PG13) - 25 December 2008 - Period Drama
    Distributor: 20th Fox Century
    Running Time: approx. 166 minutes
    Director: Baz Luhrmann
    Producer: Baz Luhrmann, Catherine Knapman, G. Mac Brown
    Writer: Baz Luhrmann (story); Baz Luhrmann, Ronald Harwood, Stuart Beattie, Richard Flanagan (screenplay)
    Casts: Hugh Jackman, Nicole Kidman, Brandon Walters, David Wenham
    Plot: A romantic action-adventure set in northern Australia prior to World War II, the film centres on an English aristocrat (Kidman) who inherits a ranch the size of Maryland. When English cattle barons plot to take her land, she reluctantly joins forces with a rough-hewn cattle driver (Jackman) to drive 2000 head of cattle across hundreds of miles of the country's most unforgiving land, only to still face the bombing of Darwin, Australia by the Japanese forces that had attacked Pearl Harbor only months earlier.

    My Verdict:

    Green Tea says:


    Why on Earth do we need to make a film with the country's name as the title? Are we learning some history here? Many people told me that this movie is going to bomb and looked non-sense. Then I paid RM12 for the movie ticket, sit and watch through the 2 hours and 46 minutes movie. After that my perception towards the movie totally changed.

    First, let's talk about the acting. I personally feel that the Aussie darling Nicole Kidman was kind-of over-react yet feminist to many of her scenes, but I think it was the best to portray a cultural shock for an aristocrat British woman whom first arrived in no-where land to inherit the fortunes. Hugh Jackman, as always, was awesome. He took the challenge well and have carried himself deep into the story. However, I also noted the lack in consistency and profilic love chemistry between them. Two big stars meant to bond well in a film may prove to be a tough job. The newbies as the creamy-boy, Brandon Walters did well but I noticed the little significant he had in the movie. The character don't grow and expand much.

    The story line is divided into three parts and it felt like you are watching a trilogy but continuously. The first part - The a la American Western feature of the Australian outback setting; beginning with arrival from England and the cattle drives. Here, the story editing is a bit choppy and jumpy, where scenes were shown to be dramatic. The second part is more settled section of some romantic movie you saw somewhere. Here, the movie reached a bit lack in pace but rather still enjoyable. Things getting pretty serious and melancholic with the focus of attention was the nurturing the relationship between Sarah, Drover and Nullah.

    The last part is the a la war movie in the form of mini Pearl Harbor. Things getting a bit emotional, coupled with the song "Over The Rainbow" been repeatedly played and became the trademarks you hard to miss. I'm sure there were many whom weep throughout the last 30 minutes but I still think the impact was not enough. Creative writing did made this combination works well which made the complete package of the Australia - Adventure, Romance and Action.

    Another point worth to mention - cinematography. You really need to enjoy the perfect scenary and picturesque of the Australian setback here, from the breathtaking Australian outback to the peaceful pre-war Darwin. Simply it was one of the best cinematography for 2008. Facts to ponder, the director initially have six endings in hand with "saddest" ending supposed to end the movie, however Fox decided to re-shoot it!!

    The Ratings...........
    CAST - 3.5 stars
    STORYLINE - 3.5 stars
    CINEMATOGRAPHY - 4.5 stars
    EFFECTS - 3.5 stars
    an overall>> 3.5 stars
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