'Newcastle' is a coming-of-age/family drama/surfing movie. 17-year old Jesse lives in the shadow of his older brother Victor's failure to become surfing's Next Big Thing. Even when he's in ... See full summary »
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'Newcastle' is a coming-of-age/family drama/surfing movie. 17-year old Jesse lives in the shadow of his older brother Victor's failure to become surfing's Next Big Thing. Even when he's in his natural habitat of magnificent surf breaks, his blue-collar future is brought home by the coal barges that constantly line his horizon. Jesse has the natural skills to surf his way out of this reality and onto the international circuit but can he overcome his equally natural ability to sabotage himself? A momentous weekend away with his mates that includes first love and tragedy leads him to discover what's really important, and also to the performance of a lifetime. Written by
NEWCASTLE (in Australia) is an interesting take on the very male beauty pageant that is Australian surf culture among teen/20 somethings... and viewers should be aware that the writer/director Dan Castle is a gay film maker. As a result his awareness of the visual aspects of the young male form in surf sand and sex scenes is to the fore of this 'pretty' film. Reminiscent of PUBERTY BLUES (1982) and BIG Wednesday (1978) and a male version of BLUE CRUSH without the surf contest, NEWCASTLE shows the Australian mid coast steel city's glorious beaches and aqua waters with frolicking male beauty and testosterone challenges. It has a reasonably interesting storyline and some surprises and one very startling moment in the dunes, but somehow lacks gravity. The Parents and Grandfather are 'just there' as characters, the girls no more than a distraction from the boy antics, the older brother issues..all just get enough screen time to make them vaguely followable. Visually it is a triumph with incredible photography of almost being in the surf with the guys, and an affection for the male form that only a committed gay film maker could possibly dare to present. The young actors were very game to agree to participate and in the future would be proud of their achievement. Xavier Samuels, the least pretty of the boys ironically has gone onto bigger and better things in the TWILIGHT series. NEWCASTLE is a state of mind, an erogenous zone and a great place to surf. Some terrific scenes at the very surreal Newcaslte ocean pool are almost scenes from A BIGGER SPLASH. It is exceptionally well cast. The star of the film no doubt is the unforgettable photography during the surfing scenes. Overall, there is a lot of near nudity and some completely nude sequences. It must have played to screaming audiences in a packed cinema.
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