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Australia 2001
Directed by
Rachel Perkins
60 minutes
Rated M

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3 stars

One Night The Moon

Australian singer-songwriter Paul Kelly, with his real life wife (Kaarin Fairfax) and daughter (Memphis Kelly) star in this short feature set in 1930s Australia and based on a true story about a little girl who died in the outback after her father refused the help of an Aboriginal tracker (played here by Kelton Pell).

Written by Perkins with John Romeril, as a kind of folk tale, I'm not sure that the device of turning it into a semi-musical or sung drama entirely works as the emotional development is rather schematic, turning the story into a vehicle for commenting on the sorry treatment of the black man by whites in Australia. That, in some senses is enough and it brings home the tragedy in an economic way but there remains scope here for it to be given full dramatic form.

The sparse beauty of the Flinders Ranges, is splendidly captured by Kim Batterham's cinematography which looks like a Hans Heysen painting come to life. Songs and music are by Kelly, Kev Carmody and Mairead Hannan.




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