Van Diemen's Land
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This is the true Story of Alexander Pearce, an Irishman who was sentenced to forced labour on the island of Van Diemen's Land (Now Tasmania).

The Film is initially about the brutality of this wild untamed wilderness for seven runaways. Van Diemen's Land appears to be a place bereft of any kind of life other than the escapees themselves. The cinematography captures a horrendously cruel wilderness.

Initially on their escape from captivity, the convicts are able to sustain themselves upon small morsels of bread. After a short time, however their meagre food is totally exhausted; leading them to consider more drastic measures for their nutrition. Robert Greenhill (Played by Arthur Angel) plots to murder another of the escapees, Alexander Dalton (Mark Leonard Winter) and eat the meat from his corpse. This plan is not shared with the complete group however. The murder of Dalton is quite graphic and nothing at all is left to the imagination. On the completion of this vile act, the group - rather than rally around and agree that "needs must", become morally split. Two of the older members of the group are totally aghast at the measures that Greenhill and his lackeys are going to and they decide to make their own way, having refused to eat the new "feast" on offer.

Anyway to cut a long story short - John Mathers (Torquil Neilson) is next for the chop when he starts to go mad. As the story progresses the madness intensifies and everyone remaining in the larger party becomes a target, culminating in the remaining two antagonists, Robert Greenhill and Alexander Pearce (Oscar Redding). As the film reaches its climax the coveted hatchet becomes the machine gun of its day. The wielder is the "boss" and holds sway over the other. Greenhill has the hatchet initially but the early bird catches the worm as they say and Pearce snatches it as the other man sleeps. Immediately Greenhill starts to wakefulness and blurts out - "Get it over with then" - Pearce obliges before hacking off a forearm and eating it raw.

This is the end of the movie. Overall an excellent film and well made with wonderful shots of the landscape and the hardship endured. It isn't particularly one to watch with your girlfriend at Primetime on a Saturday evening though.....
Page last updated by nolan-anthony2, 2 years ago
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