Australian Rules

A well done and good looking little Ausrtalian story of how racism is still ingrained in our culture, particularly at the coalface of different races living together - rural areas. A young guy (Phillips) is on an Aussie Rules team. He's good friends with the star player (an Aboriginal) and finds himself attracted to his friend's sister as well, one that would bring scandal to his bleak South Australian town setting and his brutal father.

After the grand final, where the guys teach themselves the value of strategy and teamwork, the big awards ceremony is at hand, and everyone expects the star scorer to win man of the match. When the obviously biased organiser and local pub owner awards the honour to the clean cut white boy, the black contingent leave in disgust.

Returning later that night to rob and ransack the pub in angry but what should have been harmless retaliation at the insult, shots are fired and the kid is killed. The town is divided, and the hero brings the ire of the disruption down on his head by wanting to attend the funeral and drawing closer to his dead friends' sister.

In the end, he and his new love talk about their leaving, and you're left with the sense not that two free spirited young souls have escaped from hell, but that rural Australia is a depressing, miserable place with no hope of redemption from its inherent human harshness and racism.

All parts are well played by good looking and talented unknowns, and the movie has something strong to say.

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