Chopper tells the intense story of Mark "Chopper" Read, a legendary criminal who wrote his autobiography while serving a jail sentence in prison. His book, "From the Inside", upon which the film is based, was a best-seller.
Chopper tells the intense story of Mark "Chopper" Read, a legendary criminal who wrote his autobiography while serving a murder sentence in prison. His book, From the Inside, upon which the film is based, was a best-seller.Written by
"Somewhere over the Rainbow", the original song to accompany the opening credits of "Chopper", was written especially for The Wizard of Oz (1939). Curiously, in L. Frank Baum's original stage version in 1903, the Tin Man was referred to as (Mick) Chopper. See more »
At Tanya's house you see the car lights are on as Chopper goes to her front door. When he comes back and beats the car in frustration - they are off. See more »
Why would I shoot a bloke BANG, then drive him to the bloody car and wizz him off to the hospital at a hundred miles an hour? It defeats the purpose of having shot him in the first place.
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In telling the story of Mark Brandon "Chopper" Read, one of Australia's most famous criminals, the script combined Read's own autobiographical bestseller with what actually happened, which makes for an interesting, sometimes confusing blend of reality and invention. That mix makes for a very interesting watch, even if there's not enough material for a satisfying film; it could have been a thirty-minute film and achieved about the same level of success, and it doesn't leave you with any clear notion of what you saw. Chopper doesn't quite work out as a biography or even a character study, but it's an intriguing document on violence and violent people, and about what makes the same people land in trouble again and again.
On top of that, it's also pretty entertaining. Eric Bana is terrific in the lead. Not being from Australia myself, I first became aware of Bana as a leading man in American mainstream films like Troy and Hulk, where he always struck me as dull and uncharismatic, but finding out that he was a successful comedian is his native country first makes a lot of sense after seeing his disturbing, layered and very funny performance as Chopper. It's difficult to call it a comedy - don't expect a crime farce like Snatch, because there's very little of that going on. But Chopper's character is outrageous enough to be entertaining throughout.
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