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Carlos Prime [Celluloid 10.06.16] Australia comedy thriller drama

If somebody were to utter the phrase “hilarious hate crime movie,” what’s the first image that pops into your head? Somebody tying a shoe knot instead of a noose? Swinging a bat so hard and missing so they spin around in place? It’s a pretty difficult combination to imagine, right? Somehow Abraham Forsythe got the scales perfectly balanced between “oh that’s fucked up” and “oh that’s fucking funny.”

Set during 2005 race riots in Cronulla (a lovely part of Australia they actually refer to as ‘The Shire!’), Down Under pits native Aussies against immigrants in one of their darkest moments in recent history. I know what you’re thinking- “hey, aren’t Australians, like, Irish immigrants or something?” Yes! Which only adds to the wonderfully conveyed hilarity of people not fully understanding why they hate other people.

A bunch of confused, scared, and angry white Australians load their gear up and cruise around the town looking for immigrants to beat up. Why? Because they’ve got to take their country back, of course! Never mind the fact that your girlfriend LOVES that kebab shop down the road, or that you’ve got better things to do, like teach your cousin how to drive and then watch Lord of the Rings with him- it’s time to teach them all a lesson!

At the same time, a bunch of confused, scared, and angry Lebanese-Australians load their gear up and cruise around the town so they can…protect their neighbors? Nah, they’re just looking for a fight, too.

What keeps this film moving is smartly-written dialogue and situation after situation that make you scratch your head and wonder “how can people possibly act this stupidly?” The characters come from different cultures, but the terror and reactionary postures make them all united in ignorance. Kind of like when you’re watching Captain America: Civil War and start yelling at the screen “OH MY GOD JUST SIT DOWN AND TALK ABOUT IT LIKE ADULTS AND YOU COULD HAVE AVOIDED THIS WHOLE THING!”

A moment of clarity comes when two characters are sitting on the hood of the car, gazing out into the distance. One mentions they should build a wall to keep all the immigrants out. The other takes a hit from his pipe and while exhaling, completely deconstructs the logistics of such an absurd concept. While the monologue got a riotous round of applause at its screening and we Americans appreciate the necessary argument, damn you and your countrymen, Mr. Forsythe, for not showing this to us sooner.
Hopefully at some point in the future this film will be required viewing before thinking about rioting.

Imagine Australian History X, but twisting an ankle after missing the curb stomp.

Recommended Release:
Four Lions

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JSnell (5 years ago) Reply

looks like an American remake of "attack the gas station" - all the gangs, with one funny accident shot.


bc (5 years ago) Reply

This 'the retarded person being the voice of reason' is becoming stale.


Marc (5 years ago) Reply

Make Australia Great Again

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