peteg's blog - noise - movies - 2010 07 12 BridesOfChrist

Brides of Christ

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Like The Thorn Birds, they don't make them like this anymore. In this case it is easy to see why: the last big piece of drama that I can remember the ABC funding (and producing?) was Changi, superficially structurally similar to this. We can thank the funding cuts and crap management of the Howard era for the current situation of outsourced mediocrity.

The first episode is nigh-on perfect, and though the later episodes flag a little the standard is kept high. All of the actresses are brilliant, with perhaps Josephine Byrnes and Brenda Fricker being the standouts. The young Naomi Watts is just a little too histrionic and bloody-minded for my tastes; some of her mannerisms are familiar from her later work, but she learnt subtlety after this one. Harold Hopkins puts in an appearance as a worn-out husband, and Russell Crowe as a gung-ho mechanic.

Has there been anything in Australia in the past twenty years that would be worthy of this sort of treatment?