Paul Scheer sheds some light on The Room, lets us in on a secret in The Disaster Artist, and answers your questions. Plus, we explore the origins of midnight movies and take a look at IMDb's Top 10 Stars of 2017.
In an outback town, Jay Swan, an Indigenous cowboy detective, returns home to solve the murder of a teenage Indigenous girl whose body is found under the highway trucking route out of town. Jay is alienated from both the white-dominated police force and the Indigenous community, including his teenage daughter, whom he discovers is connected to the murdered girl. Starring Aaron Pedersen, Hugo Weaving, Jack Thompson, Ryan Kwanten, and Tasma Walton, MYSTERY ROAD is a gripping murder mystery with a cultural perspective. Written by
Much of this film is shot in the small Australian town of Winton. Mystery Road held its first screening there. Some of iconic Australian film, Crocodile Dundee, was shot there (The Walkabout Creek Pub Scene). See more »
When he's preparing his rifle and automatic for the drug meet, he cocks his handgun the first time. Then when he's in his car being shot at he cocks his handgun a second time without having fired or reloaded it. See more »
Detective Jay Swan:
[waking to answer the phone]
Yeah? Alright. OK...
[rolls out of bed]
[greeting his arrival on scene]
Detective Jay Swan:
G'day, Robbo. What's the story?
The truckie pulled up to check his trailers, heard a wild dog growling from under the bridge, smelt something rotten.
Detective Jay Swan:
How did he know it was a wild dog?
Guess he just knows the difference, I suppose. You know, between a wild dog and a wild kind of normal dog.
See more »
I must say that I am fascinated by the Australian outback, so this
movie immediately had my attention. There have been many good
Australian films to come out in recent years(The Proposition, Animal
Kingdom, and Snowtown come to mind) and Mystery Road is another quality
film to add to that list. With some unbelievable cinematography and
good to very good acting throughout, Mystery Road was an inherently
different take on the mystery genre that I quite enjoyed.
The overall tone of Mystery Road is what sets it apart from other
movies of similar type. From the camera shots all the way down to the
dialogue, everything is depicted with realism. There is a real
awkwardness to the conversations between characters in this movie,
almost like you would see in real life. While obviously still scripted,
the way Ivan Sen went about depicting these scenes made for a unique
perspective. From cinematographic standpoint, this film is stunning.
Utilizing both top down angles of the town and low-angled sunset shots,
Sen really brought the outback to life quite beautifully. This film
really reminds me of the Coen Brother's No Country for Old Men, both in
tone and the way the scenes were shot. Also like No Country for Old
Men, Mystery Road features a soundtrack nearly devoid of music. This
adds a somber, gritty feel to the already stoic nature Mystery Road
The acting in this movie is pretty fantastic throughout. Some of the
supporting characters weren't as convincing, but they played a rather
minor role in the overall scheme of things. This movie focuses heavily
on the main character, and rightfully so, as he's a total bad-ass. You
can read the synopsis above so I won't waste time here. I must say,
however, that Jay Swan(played by Aaron Pedersen) is pretty enjoyable to
follow as he attempts to unravel the mystery of a dead girl in his
hometown. Mystery Road shines a spotlight on race relations in
Australia as well, and with Jay being an aboriginal detective, he faces
a lot of adversity throughout the film. It is interesting to see this
as an American, since we are not often exposed to such things that
happen in Australia. There always seems to be a layer of tension below
the courtesy between Jay and his fellow townsmen, either due to him
being an aboriginal himself or because he is a detective.
Now to the negatives, which there are a few. First, this movie starts
out quite slow. I almost gave up on it as I fell asleep twice in the
first 40 minutes. Had it not been for the fantastic shots of the
outback and a few intriguing individuals, I may not have made it
through. Things begin to pick up around the halfway mark but this will
most definitely turn some people off. There are also a few plot holes,
but I won't give them away as they may ruin some of the ending. Many of
the characters are sadly under-developed as well, which detracts from
the overall intrigue of some very interesting individuals. While Hugo
Weaving was quite good and his character interesting, he role was
particularly undeveloped in my humble opinion. Instead, Sen decided to
focus more on Jay, which is OK for the most part, but it would have
been nice to see some other characters get more screen time.
Overall, this movie offers some fantastic shots of the rural outback of
Australia with an interesting plot to boot. Things do start off slow
but it also, quite literally, ends with a bang. This ending is not one
to miss, and has one of the most impressive gun battles I have seen
perhaps ever. If you are a fan of gritty mystery movies, definitely
check out Mystery Road.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?