I’ve been doing a lot of moaning and minging recently; didn’t like that film; found this book full of plot-holes, on and on not giving anyone the benefit of the doubt but today I watched a terrific film so I thought I should report on what sort of thing I can get excited about.
Jindabyne is an Australian film starring Laura Linney and Gabriel Byrne; it was BBC 2 Film of the Week so we gave it a go. Utterly brilliant; Laura Linney grabs all the best scenes but Byrne does good as a washed-up racing driver running a crummy garage cum filling station in nowheresville, the Jindabyne of the title.
It is notionally about the domestic and legal fallout after the body of an Aboriginal girl, a victim of a serial killer . . . is discovered by four friends on a fishing trip. Byrne plays one of the friends and proposes to tether the floating body in the river, continue with the fishing trip and report the body to the police on Sunday when the trip is over. He lives year to year for this male-bonding fishing expedition and doesn’t want it spoiled.
Then they get home.
Then things unravel. Laura Linney who plays the wife is horrified by what they have done, as indeed are most of the citizens in the tiny town; the newspapers get hold of it and the four men are all over the front pages, described as insensitive sickos. Their marriage and their male-bonded friendships go into free-fall and that is really what the film is about; how you think you know and love someone until some incident, some lapse, some crisis brings out an aspect you never dreamed was there and makes you question everything about that person and what you thought you loved about them.
Is it intense, then? ‘Fraid so.
Disturbing and mysterious, I absolutely loved it; welded to the television for two hours.