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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

5 reasons I’m psyched for ‘Australia’

All this week! 5 movies I’m psyched for in November — well, 3 movies I’m psyched for and 2 I’m not yet totally sure about but would like to be psyched for — and 5 reasons why. No. 2: Australia [opens wide November 26].
1. That trailer! It’s pretty rare that a trailer actually gives me chills, but this one does: it promises all sorts of lush, gorgeous romance — all kinds of romance — which is what makes up the kind of movies I love best… the kind of movies movies were invented for. If I could melt into a puddle of well-wooed goo at the feet of a trailer, this would be the one I’d choose. Maybe the film won’t live up to this, but this is one of the best trailers I’ve ever seen. It makes me tingle with anticipation.

2. Baz Luhrmann is a god. His Romeo + Juliet might be the best cinematic adaptation of Shakespeare yet, in how it captures the timeless urgency of the Bard. And his Moulin Rouge! is one of my favorite movies ever: it’s the opulent emotionalism of this one that makes anticipate a lot more of the same from Australia. (I can’t believe I’ve never seen Lurhrmann’s first film, Strictly Ballroom — I must remedy that soon.)

3. Hugh Jackman is a god. Even in crappy movies, like Kate & Leopold, he simply oozes old-Hollywood charm. He’s like Clark Gable and Cary Grant all rolled up into one irresistible package. And Australia makes it look like maybe there’ll be a little John Wayne-meets-Harrison Ford in the mix, too. Yum.

4. Nicole Kidman is a goddess, and was perhaps elevated to that deified station by Luhrmann in Moulin Rouge!. Is there a realm above that of the gods? Maybe Kidman and Luhrmann will find it here.

5. Australia. I dread revealing myself as a provincial American by saying this, but this is a land of exotic beauty to me, who’s never been further from home than Paris in one direction and Vancouver in the other. I’d love to visit, and this may be the closest I ever get.



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  • Anon

    I am looking forward to it. It just looks too good and there is a sense of maturity in the few clips for it not to be great.

  • Patti H.

    I think the chill-making factor of the trailer is significantly enhanced by the use of Patrick Doyle’s music from Ken Branagh’s “Henry V.” (I’m pretty sure it’s the St. Crispin’s Day speech theme.)

    Let’s hope it really does turn out to be the best kind of sprawling romantic war epic!

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