A comedy of life's temptations - lust, greed and power. The city in question is Sydney and the colour green signifies greed and envy in David Williamsons amusing satire on its film and ... See full synopsis »
Steve Beck (Vince Martin) is a Karate instructor, Robby Mason (Tom Jennings) his prize student. Beck is using drugs to give him an edge. Guy Duncan (Craig Pearce) is Beck's drug connection ... See full summary »
A tale about a happily married couple who would like to have children. Tracy teaches art, Andy's a college dean. Things are never the same after she is taken to hospital and operated upon by Jed, a "know all" doctor.
Danny has been sent to boarding school, in this sequel to The Year My Voice Broke. Against a backdrop of bullying and sadistic teachers Danny strikes up an affair with an African girl, ... See full summary »
PC Simpson is an enthusiastic surfer. With the help of his father's company's engineer Howard he develops a high tech surf board for the coming world surf championship. But then he falls in... See full summary »
The story of Kat Stanton (Kidman), an Australian woman searching for her father who, whilst travelling back from London to Australia via Thailand, makes friends with Arkie Ragan (Ehlers), a... See full summary »
An Australian couple take a sailing trip in the Pacific to forget about a terrible accident. While on the open sea, in dead calm, they come across a ship with one survivor who is not at all what he seems. Written by
Loring Holden <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The yacht 'Storm Vogel' was used as the yacht the 'Saracen'. See more »
During the first part of the sex scene Hughie rips off Rae's shorts and underwear. When she slips on a robe to go run up on deck and get the shotgun, she is wearing a white thong underneath her robe. See more »
Merry Christmas, Captain Ingram.
Merry Christmas, Eric.
Merry Christmas, sir...
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The producers wish to thank the owners of 'Storm Vogel' for the use of their yacht as the 'Saracen' and Keith Williams, the staff and management of Hamilton Island. See more »
Dead Calm is directed by Phillip Noyce and adapted to screenplay by Terry Hayes from the novel of the same name written by Charles Williams. It stars Sam Neill, Nicole Kidman and Billy Zane. Music is by Graeme Revell and cinematography by Dean Semler.
After losing their young son in a car accident, John (Neill) and Rae Ingram (Kidman) head out alone on their yacht for an ocean vacation. Whilst taking in some R&R, the couple spy a ship drifting in the distance, then a man in a dinghy hurriedly rows towards them. He boards their yacht, frantic and panicked, he tells them the ship is sinking and that all on board are dead, killed by food poisoning. His name is Hughie Warriner (Billy Zane), and the Ingram's are about to wish they had never met him...
The Saracen and The Orpheus.
It's so refreshing to find a thriller that works without tricks or elaborate plotting, where the narrative is stripped down to the bare bones and played out purely by three characters. Dead Calm, whilst not exactly the most credible of thrillers from the 80s, contains genuine suspense, a pot boiling heart and production value of some distinction. Director Noyce deals in psychological studies, primarily that of a lunatic and that of a woman beset with grief having to use her mental fortitude to hopefully save herself and her husband.
Noyce and his team get the maximum amount of edge of the seat thrills from a small isolated yacht in the middle of a vast ocean, with tight camera work and nifty editing, it's a film of quality that belies its pared back production. Even ace Aussie photographer Semler (previously Mad Max 2/Razorback, latterly Dances With Wolves/Waterworld) creates beauty out of such a sparse set up, where the blues and greens of the ocean warm the soul and the red sunsets please the eyes. They be glimpses of Mother Earth that give the Ingram's something tangible to fight for.
With the plot requiring Neill to be in his own isolated hell, he turns in a more measured performance, perfect in fact, but it's Zane and Kidman who steal the show. This would prove to be the launching point of Kidman's career, and it hints at the top actress she would become. She gives Rae Ingram a real strength through adversity, with energy in abundance, intelligence and a simmering sexuality, she's a lady character earning respect by film lovers because of Kidman's performance. Zane is suitably edgy, very much giving Hughie a man-child persona, he too exudes a dangerous sexuality, and when it inevitably kicks off, he is scary into the bargain.
A couple of daft character decisions within the story, and a WTF finale, stop it from being near the top of the thriller movie pantheon. But it's not far off from sitting with the best and it remains fresh and entertaining as the decades roll by. 8/10
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