Cunnamulla, 800 kilometres west of Brisbane, is the end of the railway line. In the months leading up to a scorching Christmas in the bush, there's a lot more going on than the annual ...
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Cunnamulla, 800 kilometres west of Brisbane, is the end of the railway line. In the months leading up to a scorching Christmas in the bush, there's a lot more going on than the annual lizard race. Here, Aboriginal and white Australians live together but apart. Creativity struggles against indifference, eccentricity against conformity. Written by
This is truly the end of the line and is as depressing a take on country town life as you could find.
One hopes that Dennis O'Rourke's film on backwater Queensland town, Cunnamulla, is a personal view in which he chooses to highlight only negative characters for dramatic effect. If it is a truly representative profile of life and people in the town, then it becomes even more frightening and depressing.
His metaphor of "the end of the line" is played out with devastating effect, as each character tells of their one-way track to nowhere.
The characters have become trusting enough of the director to say things that that they probably oughtn't to have said into the camera. This brutal and embarrassing openness makes for a gruesome and somewhat prurient fascination.
Despite the strong sense of exploitation that comes with this film, it remains a powerful and engrossing statement and probably encapsulates enough essential elements of rural claustrophobia to resonate for many viewers.
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