Western Australia, 1931. Government policy includes taking half-caste 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 14, 10, and 8) arrive at their Gulag and promptly escape, under Molly's lead. For 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
The speech in the film to a Perth ladies charity society by actor Kenneth Branagh, playing A.O. Neville, was never made by the real Neville. The words did not come from a transcript found in any historical archive but were created for the film by screenwriter Christine Olsen. See more »
Yes we've seen children-on-the-run films, but such glib commentary demeans this true life drama and its implications in real life. This magnificent and tragic story is yet another must-see in re:the little holocausts that have gone on, even in the most "civilized" nations - in this case Australia. What a touching story of three girls, marvelously portrayed by unknown young actresses, who escape from a horrific government policy, initiated by white supremacist Australia pre-Hitler and Nazi Germany. It is odd to say this is beautifully filmed in the Australian outback... and Kenneth Brannagh, echoing his recent portrayal as Heydrich in "Conspiracy", plays white evil incarnate - a prim bureaucrat diligently doing his government job's mandate - to cleanse Australia of "half breeds" in a most heinous (if not deadly) fashion. It is compelling from beginning to end, and the epilogue is most chilling and bittersweet. Superior and meaningful film making.
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