Despite trying to keep his swashbuckling to a minimum, a threat to California's pending statehood causes the adventure-loving Alejandro de la Vega (Banderas) -- and his wife, Elena (Zeta-Jones) -- to take action.
Though recognized for heroism as a lad, Ned Kelly can not escape the stigma of being the eldest of a brood sired by a known criminal. In days when an arrest equaled guilt and a conviction, his unfair imprisonment for horse thievery puts him steadfast, in the eyes of Victorian police, on the wrong side of things for life. With a sister unable to dissuade the unwanted advances of Constable Fitzpatrick, Ned, his brother Dan, and friends Joe Byrne and Steve Hart soon find themselves labeled "an outlaw gang" by the less-than-honorable constable. It's a designation they're apt to live up to after Ned's mother is unfairly arrested and sentenced to three years hard labor. In retaliation, the Kelly Gang strikes out against the oppressive Victorian government, with ultimately tragic results and passage into Australian folklore. Written by
The Sydney Morning Herald suggested that Heath Ledger was made for the role because when he tried on Ned Kelly's original iron armour, it fit perfectly. Heath Ledger was quoted saying, "It was quite eerie actually ... we're the same height and the same body weight. He was skinny 'cause he was starving, I'm skinny 'cause I don't go to the gym." See more »
The scene of the shoot out at Glenrowan shows many police being shot. In reality, the only police casualty was Superintendent Francis Hare who received a slight wound to his wrist. See more »
I was the hero of Hughes Creek. I can still see the glint in me Da's eye as he looked down at me, his hand on me shoulder. What did he call me that day? Ah, what did Da call me? That's right. He called me Sunshine.
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There are few films that leave me with the feeling that Gregor Jordan's 'Ned Kelly' film did. Initially I had heard only half hearted recommendations, and decided to see it for myself. Since then, I have acquired both the video and soundtrack, and have to say that after several viewings, I am still very impressed with the underlying character of this film. It is also wonderful to see something Australian! I appreciate its down to earth quality, that if you ask me is a rarity, as well as the absence of tackiness that takes away from so many films. This film proves that you don't necessarily require fancy costumes and a glamorous set that absorbs how many millions of dollars to make a point. The cast was a bonus, including a variety of well known, and might I add, good looking people who did well to slip into the role of such unique characters. It is interesting to note, that much of the criticism regarding this film has been about who played what, and how they only said so many lines. However, if any criticism is due, it should constructively focus on the fact that a number of basic elements of the original events were excluded. In reality, these functioned to made it the hallmark that it is in Australian history. For example, on a closer examination it can be discovered that there was much, much more to the relationship between Joe Byrne and Aaron Sheritt, and that this was in fact responsible for many more of the final outcomes for the gang than were explored in the film. Also overlooked was the fact that it was not only Aaron Sheritt's efforts alone, that provided the Victorian police with their insights into the unfolding mystery. Yes, this is their interpretation of the story, and it is understandable that true stories require sensationalism and at times the modification of the original plot to grab the viewers attention. I feel that in this case, this is the only limitation. However, I can accept that perhaps historical accuracy is only of significance to those who have a particular interest in the realistic events behind a situation. It certainly inspired me to look more closely. So, watch it and decide for yourself. You might not like it at all, thats your opinion, and thats fine. Maybe it is a film that appeals largely to an Australian audience? For me, I'd call it a breath of fresh air!
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