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Film Reviews Review: Sweet Country is a searing classic-in-the-making

Sweet Country.

Bunya Productions

rating

  • Sweet Country
  • Directed by: Warwick Thornton
  • Written by: Steven McGregor and David Tranter
  • Starring: Bryan Brown and Sam Neill

In this searing drama of brutal racism, director Warwick Thornton takes a traditional theme of the western – justice on the frontier – and transports it to the Australian outback in the early 20th century. An Aboriginal man who has killed a crazed white settler in self-defence flees into the desert with his wife to escape a self-righteous posse.

The story is both fresh and archetypal, the landscape both hard and delicate – and beautifully observed. Memories and premonitions are intriguingly inserted into the action, and the performances from Hamilton Morris as the accused, Natassia Gorey-Furber as his wife, Sam Neill as their charitable employer and Bryan Brown as a vengeful lawman are note perfect. The results are unforgettable, a new Australian classic.

Sweet Country opens April 13 in Toronto

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