Western Australia, 1931. Government policy includes taking half-white, half-Aboriginal children from their Aboriginal mothers and sending them a thousand miles away to what amounts to indentured servitude, "to save them from themselves." Molly, Daisy, and Grace (two sisters and a cousin who are fourteen, ten, and eight) arrive at their Gulag and promptly escape, under Molly's lead. For several days they walk north, following a fence that keeps rabbits from settlements, eluding a native tracker and the regional constabulary. Their pursuers take orders from the government's "Chief Protector of Aborigines", A.O. Neville, blinded by Anglo-Christian certainty, evolutionary world view, and conventional wisdom. Can the girls survive?Written by
With only a three-week window to find his stars, Director Phillip Noyce and Casting Director Christine King had to move quickly. See more »
Far into the story the film shows the view from Mr. Neville's office window, allowing us to see a few applicants. Among those is a couple whose application had been rejected early in the story by Mr. Neville. Obviously the same set served different scenes that were far apart in time. See more »
[after Molly lifts Daisy up to a bird's nest to gather some eggs to eat]
Three of them!
Perfect. One for you, one for me, and one for both of us!
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The painting songs sung by the Walpiri, Amatjere and Wangajunka women were not sacred songs, but were songs able to be performed in public. See more »
Wonderful story about the transcendence of the human spirit
I've seen several movies recently ("Adaptation," "The Hours," "Bowling for Columbine," "City of God," etc.), and "Rabbit-Proof Fence" is the best of the bunch. It's a simple story, but a very moving one. In particular, the performances by the young leads, the beautiful cinematography, and the wise, uncluttered script made this a strong cinematic experience for me. Kenneth Branagh was convincing as the racial purity zealot who manages the whole forced removal scheme. I also really enjoyed the subtle changes we see in the mysterious character of The Tracker (played with wonderfully restrained power by David Gulpilil), as his dogged pursuit of the girls eventually gives way to a dawning admiration. And to cap it all off, the closing real-life footage and text postscript leaves the audience feeling simultaneously devastated and triumphant. Wow.
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