Thursday, July 29, 2010

Review: South Solitary

South Solitary
Dir. Shirley Barrett
Year: 2010
Aus Rating: M
Running Time: 116mins

Shirley Barrett’s first feature film in 10 years – and only her second since winning the prestigious 1996 Camera d’Or in Cannes for Love Serenade – is a sad movie-going experience. Set on the island of South Solitary off the coast of NSW in the 1920s, Barrett’s film seems to be aiming for quirk, but turns out to be a dispiriting and deflating film. People constantly ask why the Australian film funding bodies give money to the filmmakers that they do – even in this year of successes like Animal Kingdom, Bran Nue Dae and Daybreakers – but if you need an example of the problem then South Solitary is it. It is an adequate-looking, nicely acted movie in which absolutely nothing of any interest happens for an audience of zero.

Read the rest at Onya Mag

I have been having some odd reactions to movies lately. Dreamland made me feel meditative, The Loved Ones, which I'll be review soon, made me feel... well, let's not give that one away, shall we? And South Solitary actually made me sad. Yes, it's terminally dull and a useless movie, but rarely do movies make me feel actual sadness for the people involved and for the state of affairs that the movie finds itself in.

It's no wonder Maggie Gyllenhaal and Paul Bettany dropped out due to "scheduling conflicts". D

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