Thursday, July 7, 2016

Goldstone at the Royal Open Air Theatre

For a small town, there seems to be a lot going on in Winton. Tourist season has picked up, since reopening our doors after the creek flooded the dinosaur museum has had some record breaking numbers through the doors. This phenomenon is largely to do with The Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival, showcasing the best of local made films as well as a suite of matinee shows starring dinosaur films! A friend from work gave me tickets to head to opening night in exchange for months of cat-sitting (a labor of love) and I really loved the film! The sequel to Mystery Road, Goldstone, written and directed by Ivan Sen stars Aaron Pedersen as Indigenous detective Jay Swan investigating a missing persons case within a mining community. The tension between white and black Australians in remote communities is palpable as Jay exposes corruption within the local Aboriginal land council, while reconciling his own identity.

Largely shot in Middleton, the sister city of Winton in western Queensland, the film is in itself is beautifully shot while highlighting the beauty of this country. The cast was perfect, with Jacki Weaver delivering an extremely convincing performance as Goldstone's mayor and local busybody, Maureen and David Wenham in short khaki pants and long socks, resembling that of Scoutmaster Ward from Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom. Unlike Wes Anderson there was very little symmetry, however, aesthetic for this film was paramount. Car chases and gun fights shot from a bird's eye view, as well as neon signs lighting up the otherwise dry and barren landscape. The film is a beautiful piece of cinematography and introduces the world to the deserts of Australia's red centre, if you haven't seen it yet, I highly recommend you give Goldstone your time, attention and thought.

*Last photo Moonrise Kingdom (2012)

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