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Australia 1984
Directed by
Michael Pattinson
100 minutes
Rated M

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
1.5 stars

Street Hero

It is difficult to believe that after the fine achievement of Moving Out (1983), a straight-shooting, low budget realist film with a genuine Aussie sensibility, Michael Pattinson and his team went to create this truly awful follow-up - a no-brand pastiche of American teen films from Saturday Night Fever to Flashdance with a bit of Rocky thrown in for good measure.

Although scripted by the same writer, Jan Sardi, and based, like the earlier film, on real experience, this time of Tibor Gyapjas, who plays Freddo and who was also in Moving Out (as were Sandy Gore and Peter Sardi) all trace of local identity (bar an incongruous visit to country Victoria) has been removed and replaced with a kind of ersatz Brooklyn 'hood setting with Vince Colosimo returning as the John Travolta/Sly Stallone wop kid who, against the odds is gonna make it one day.

Sardi's script is as direly clichéd as Pattinson's direction is hackneyed and the cast, including Colosimo and a young Sigrid Thornton as his paramour, flounder in these murky waters. It will come as no surprise however that the production designer for this, Brian Thomson, took his cans of red paint and splashed even more of the stuff over Rebel, a film in which his kitsch proclivities found a much more suitable vehicle.




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