UK Release date: 8th April 2011
Watched on Sky+ Saturday 18th February 2012.
PLEASE NOTE: THERE MAY BE SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW.
Some Australian friends of mine recommended this one and I said I’d give it a look if it ever made an appearance over here in the UK. Well, it aired on TV this week and so, as a man of my word, I gave it a look. While I may not be the target audience for this one, being on the wrong side of seventeen, I still quite enjoyed this drama about teenage Australians who find themselves in more than a spot of bother. I will tell you more after this brief summary.
A group of teenagers decide to go on a camping trip for a couple of days before the end of the school holidays. They are; Ellie Linton, who narrates the whole thing; Corrie Mackenzie, Ellie’s best friend; Kevin Holmes, Corrie’s boyfriend; Homer Yannos, local tearaway; Fiona Maxwell, the posh one; Lee Takkam, who works in a restaurant and hates it and finally, Robyn Mathers, who is quite religious. They set off to a remote part of the outback called ‘Hell’ where they spend a couple of nights camping out and generally having a good time, as teenagers do. They come back to find their houses deserted, the power cut and the phones out. Cautiously, they sneak into town to find all the townsfolk being held prisoner by an invading army. They must decide what to do; do they fight, or do they give themselves up? Well, I won’t spoil it by telling you now or the Spoiler Police (Aussie Division) will be stuffing me into a Billy-can and boiling me up for stew.
Well made with some great tunes, particularly at the beginning, but the music is pretty good throughout. There is some CGI used in places and this was all very well done also. Having been brought up on a diet of Aussie soaps I know there is some great acting talent out there and I thought all the kids put in excellent performances in this. So I’ll give honourable mentions to; Caitlin Stasey as Ellie Linton, Rachel Hurd-Wood as Corrie Mackenzie, Lincoln Lewis as Kevin Holmes, Deniz Akdeniz as Homer Yannos, Phoebe Tonkin as Fiona Maxwell, Chris Pang as Lee Takkam and Ashleigh Cummings as Robyn Mathers. I’d also like to mention; Andrew Ryan as Chris Lang and Colin Friels as Dr. Clements.
Although I enjoyed this film I was kind of left a little deflated. It felt like I was watching a pilot for a TV series aimed at teenagers. I have since found out that a sequel is in the pipeline and due for release in 2012, so that will please fans of this one. There are many good things I take away from it though, the quality of the acting and the music were two things that immediately struck me. The action sequences and the effects were also pretty well done and so there was enough to keep me entertained. I really got into the drama as well and even found myself shouting at the screen at one point! But as I say, at the end of the day it didn’t quite hit the mark I was expecting. I guess, in summary, I could say it’s good without being great but even so it’s worth a look… Recommended (just).
My score: 6.4/10.
IMDb Score: 6.2/10 (based on 9,667 votes at the time of going to press).
Rotten Tomatoes ‘Tomatometer’ Score: 64/100 (based on 45 reviews counted at the time of going to press).
Rotten Tomatoes ‘Audience’ Score: 63/100 (based on 7,378 user ratings counted at the time of going to press).
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Homer Yannos: What does your instincts tell you?
Ellie Linton: That it's time to go to war.
Ellie Linton: We've all had to rewrite the scripts of our lives the last few weeks, we've learnt a lot and we've had to figure out what’s important, what matters - what really matters. It’s been quite a time.
Ellie Linton: What's the worst that could happen?