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Australia 1978
Directed by
Carl Schultz
88 minutes
Rated G

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
2.5 stars

Blue Fin

This attempt to repeat the huge success of the Henri Saffron-directed Storm Boy (1976), whilst likeable enough, is nowhere near as effective.

Although once again based on a Colin Thiele novel about the relationship between a young boy, Snook (Greg Rowe) and his fisherman father (played by an inexplicably cast German-born actor, Hardy Kruger), and scripted by Sonia Borg, with Rowe reprising his Storm Boy role and the film again shot in South Australia (at Streaky Bay), it never manages to engage emotionally. Perhaps too much time was given to the scenes of tuna fishing, which, whilst being educational, do nothing to advance the story dramatically which remains rudimentary, director Schultz duly taking us through the typical rites-of-passage narrative but with little individualisation .

One of the oddest aspects of the film in this respect is the relatively easy dispatch of Sam (John Jarratt), Snook’s mentor and even more surprising, the entire crew of the trawler “Blue Fin” in the climactic storm. The photography is often impressive, with DOP Geoff Burton another carry-over from the earlier film and the general portrayal of the harshness of the fisherman’s life is effectively done but overall there is not enough here to engage either parent or child.

FYI: An uncredited Bruce Beresford reshot the post-storm cabin sequences.

DVD Extras: A profile of Hardy Kruger (30 mins); footage of Kruger and Rowe preparing a promotional piece; original theatrical trailer.

Available from: Umbrella Entertainment




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