The Cannes Film Festival wrapped up recently, and as usual a crop of world class actors and film-makers were awarded at the close of the festival. In a great boost for Aussie film and, more particularly, Indigenous Australian artists, legendary Australian actor David Gulpilil was awarded Best Actor for his role in Rolf de Heer’s Charlie’s Country. The award was given as part of the Un Certain Regard section of the festival, which is run parallel to the main competition for the Palme d’Or. The film and Gulpilil received an extended standing ovation from the audience and received rave reviews from many sources including The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. Gulpilil, who also wrote the screenplay with de Heer, has had an incredible career, appearing in films such as Storm Boy, The Tracker and Ten Canoes. To be recognised on the world stage at an event as prestigious as Cannes is a huge honour for any actor, and Gulpilil is highly deserving of such praise.
Here’s the synopsis for Charlie’s Country:
Blackfella Charlie is getting older, and he’s out of sorts. The Government Intervention is making life more difficult on his remote community, what with the proper policing of whitefella laws that don’t generally make much sense, and Charlie’s kin and ken seeming more interested in going along with things than doing anything about it. So Charlie takes off, to live the old way, but in so doing, sets off a chain of events in his life that has him return to his community chastened, and somewhat the wiser.
Take a look at the trailer here:
Charlie’s Country will be released in Australian cinemas in July 17th.