peteg's blog - noise - movies - 2021 07 26 SweetCountry

Sweet Country (2017)

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Warwick Thornton (Samson and Delilah) directs. The story is the same-old frontier/B-movie Western justice/vigilante sort of thing that Henry Fonda would've been in back in the day. Things go as they must. Some of the cinematography is gorgeous. I enjoyed some of the actors: Hamilton Morris is great in the lead, as is his on-screen wife Natassia Gorey-Furber. I wish they'd been in every scene. Matt Day brought just the right amount of superficially respected but ultimately ineffectual force to his role as a judge, yet not enough for me to recognise him. Sam Neill did OK with some stringy material as a preacher without a church. I'd seen publican Anni Finsterer on stage in Sydney a few years back (In Real Life, The Readers); here she's a Mrs Miller to Bryan Brown's wannabe McCabe, or something like that.

Overall I'd keep the Aboriginal cast and some of the supporting actors, the sets, the director, ditch the rest and find a better story to tell.

Glenn Kenny. The "great salt desert" scene he picks out is a straight lift of a Sergio Leone classic. Jeannette Catsoulis is a bit off the mark: Alice Springs this is not.