In Prospect Bay, a remote outpost on the South Australian coast, two communities, the Goonyas and the Nungas, come together on the one field they have in common, the football field. But the...
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In Prospect Bay, a remote outpost on the South Australian coast, two communities, the Goonyas and the Nungas, come together on the one field they have in common, the football field. But the underlying racism and class warfare threatens to make the team's greatest victories irrelevant. This holds particularly true for Blacky, a white teen who is more interested in books than sport, and his best friend, Dumby, the Aboriginal star of the team.
Before the film was completed, it was selected for and had its world premiere in the World Cinema section of the Sundance Film Festival in January 2002. Its Australian premiere was held in March 2002 at the Adelaide Festival of Arts. See more »
It is unclear whether the film has the same 1970s setting as the novel 'Deadly Unna?' upon which it is based. The three boys ride 70s style bikes but Teamman wears a World Cup 94 shirt, there is a newspaper featuring Pauline Hanson and there is a mention of Kylie Minogue who didn't become famous until the 80s. See more »
Australia Rules begins like most sports movies. We follow a ramshackled team of underdogs as they prepare to play in the final of an Australian football match. However, the film quickly becomes a race drama showing the conflict in the team between the white and superior Aboriginal players, which manifests itself on the whole small town. We follow Blackie, played charismatic by Gary Black, whose best friend is Aborigine Dunby Red, the team's star player.
The film's topics are handled well, without dipping into cliché. The pacing of the film is excellent, showing how racial conflicts can escalate. However, the third act of the film lets it down. The film seems to be building to the race problem exploding, but instead fizzles out. The lack of conclusion is frustrating, although realistic.
The main problem is not so much that the film is bad. It's not. It just feels like it is going over similar ground to many films before. While always being enjoyable, it is never gripping. The direction by Goldman, particularly in the sports scenes, is very perfunctory.
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