Based on the Aramoana Massacre that occurred on 13 November and 14 November 1990. Resident David Gray, an unemployed gun collector, went on a rampage in which 13 people were shot dead, before Gray himself was shot by police.
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Ordinary people find extraordinary courage in the face of madness. On 13-14 November 1990 that madness came to Aramoana, a small New Zealand seaside village. It came in the form of a lone gunman with a high-powered semi-automatic rifle. As he stalked his victims the terrified and confused residents were trapped in the village for 24 hours while a handful of under-resourced and underarmed local policeman risked their lives trying to find him and save the survivors. By dawn 13 people lay dead. This is a true story. Written by
When David Gray is tuning the radio, we can briefly hear: the 1984 song "Pink Frost" by Dunedin band The Chills, 4XD Gold, the former name of Radio Dunedin, and David Lange, Prime Minister of New Zealand until 1989. See more »
When David Gray is crossing the street to go to the bank, there is a sign on a shop in the background for the TAB, but it is clearly the new logo, not the one which was used back in 1990 when this film is meant to take place. See more »
If you're approached by this person with an automatic weapon, you are to identify him. Call on him to surrender. If he doesn't, he has to be shot.
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a lack of sensationalism sets this one apart from similar films
On November 13, 1990, the peace and quiet that once reigned over the picturesque coastal village of Aramoana, New Zealand was forever shattered when one of its residents, a 38-year-old madman, went on an extended shooting spree, indiscriminately massacring more than a dozen of his fellow citizens and neighbors - innocent men, women and children alike.
Artfully directed by Robert Starkies, "Out of the Blue" is most notable for the matter-of-fact way in which it portrays the events of that day. The movie spends the first half hour or so focusing on the townspeople as they go about the business of their daily lives, blissfully unaware of the grim fate that awaits them. It's an unnerving reminder of just how fragile a thing life is, as it can be taken away without warning. Without a hint of sensationalism or phony theatrics, "Out of the Blue" plunges us deep into the heart of a real-life nightmare, staying true to the ordinary folk - both the victims and the survivors - who suffered through the ordeal and to the innate randomness of the event itself.
For obvious reasons, we don't get to know the characters all that well before they fall victim to the killer, but that's in keeping with the near-documentary nature of the film. And once the shooting starts, the focus shifts almost exclusively to the local law enforcement officials who are frankly ill-trained and poorly equipped to handle an emergency of this magnitude. Yet, out of the ugliness and chaos, acts of extraordinary heroism, self-sacrifice and kindness are born.
Beautifully photographed and exquisitely acted, "Out of the Blue" is a thriller in the truest sense of the term, made all the more gripping by its adhering so closely to life as we know it. Hollywood movie makers could learn a thing or two from this film.
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