Macauley is a swagman on the road in the 1940s looking for work. He's a laid back, laconic sort of bloke but when he gets landed with his daughter after his drunken play-girl wife in ... See full summary »
Macauley is a swagman on the road in the 1940s looking for work. He's a laid back, laconic sort of bloke but when he gets landed with his daughter after his drunken play-girl wife in Adelaide makes him face up to what she believes are his responsibilities, neither he nor his daughter are ready for each other. But in the beginning he's all she's got, and at the end, she's all he's got. Written by
David Kinne <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A "shiralee" is an Australian Aboriginal word meaning "burden". In the story, the Buster character is, metaphorically speaking, a physical and psychological burden to her father. The word "Shiralee" has been used as a synonym for "swag", "drum", "bundle" or "matilda". See more »
I first saw the Shiralee on the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Company) when it came out in 1987. It deeply moved me and has been my favourite movie since then. I have desperately wanted to see it again and found it at the video store, then to my disbelief, found that the entire plot had been edited out to fit it onto video. The Shiralee is about a man named Macaulay who travels around the country and shears sheep, brands cattle and boxes for a living. He has a wife and a daughter, named Buster, who he sends his earnings to. He returns to visit and finds his wife romanticising with the town bookie and his daughter asleep in bed after being fed alcohol. Macaulay is outraged and takes his daughter on the road with him. As they travel Macaulay and Buster both become very attached to each other and go through much together, including illness, separation and the mothers plea to get Buster back, for the mere purpose of hurting Macaulay. The Shiralee is a very emotional movie and Rebecca Smart and Bryan Brown are very convincing actors.
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