We of the Never Never | Chicago Reader

We of the Never Never

If I didn't know better, I'd suspect a parodist's hand in this 1982 Australian film, which strings together all the cliches of the Aussie cinema in its story of a pampered Victorian woman (Angela Punch McGregor) who follows her he-man husband to a dilapidated ranch in the distant backcountry. When she isn't discovering her inner resources of Strength and Independence, she's helping the local aborigines discover theirs. Igor Auzins directs this blatant contrivance in the least interesting way imaginable, arranging all the drama for facile audience payoffs, congratulating his 19th-century characters for spouting 20th-century banalities, and cutting away to postcard landscapes every time the action needs some mythic pumping up. With Arthur Dignam.

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