199) The Proposition (2005)
A lawman apprehends a notorious outlaw and gives him nine days to kill his older brother, or else they’ll execute his younger brother.
9/10 – Continuing my string of Australian films, after Wake in Fright, Romper Stomper and Mystery Road, comes this ultra-violent outback Western from Nick Cave. There is something about the Australian Outback that makes for such uncompromising films, it’s dusty, bleak and hopeless. In fact, I’ve struggled to find a positive Australian film (See also: Snowtown, Animal Kingdom, Chopper), it is arguably due to the types of films I’m choosing, but the landscape lends itself to a particular style of storytelling that is very compelling. It’s slow, methodical and well executed.
The film was shocking to say the least. It seemed like there was no filter to what was put out on screen. Violent act matched and followed by another violent act, but all within the context of era (1880’s) and relevant to the story. It felt honest, convincing and authentic, it gave me the kind of feeling similar to when I watched 12 Years A Slave – A slightly sickly one, but I was ultimately engrossed in the film. I can’t comment on this in relation to other Western films, but it has made me want to check out Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven, to which this film is quite often compared.
Well worth a watch, and don’t be put off that it has Ray Winstone in it. He actually plays a British person, no Aussie accent here, and before he was doing the annoying Bet365 adverts he was actually quite a good actor.