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Barky, a lost soul of 25, returns from the Australian cane fields to his hometown, inner-city Erskineville. Barky left two years ago to escape his drunken and abusive father, leaving behind everything in the world that was important to him. His brother Wace. His girlfriend Lanny. His life. Now that his father's dead, he thinks it's safe to come home, but Barky soon discovers that if staying home was hard, coming home is harder. Wace is bitter. Barky ran away just like their mother. Wace toughed it out. Alone he stood by his dying father. After two years and no explanation, can Lanny take Barky back? With everything on the line will Barky choose again to leave it all behind? In the King's Hotel the two brothers try to make sense out of life after their father's death. Beer, anger and pain prove to be a dangerous mix. Written by
Erskineville Kings is another great Australian film. It is about the relationship between two brothers: one who escaped the pace of Sydney and an abusive father to work in the rural north and one who stayed with the father until his dying day.
Wace (Hugh Jackman), the one who stayed is extremely bitter and towards his brother for 'running away' from everything and takes it out on him on his return for the funeral. It is scripted like a play (I'm not sure if it was before it became a film) and is set mainly in a dingy inner west pub. Even though it is theatre like in delivery it works brilliantly as a film especially the cinematography which presents the rough side of the inner west almost as though it is a tribute to the area.
Erskineville Kings is gritty, tense and emotionally charged and overall compulsive viewing - 8/10
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