Film Critique - Ned Kelly & Gallipoli

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Many Australian films explore the concept of ‘overcoming adversity’, common to films from many countries but they explore it in a manner unique to Australia and embrace the ‘Aussie Battler’ or ‘Aussie Hero’ icon. The films Gallipoli (Directed by Peter Weir - 1981) and Ned Kelly (Directed by Gregor Jordan - 2003) are two good examples of this. Both films show evidence of characters overcoming adversities throughout their stories. The following will analyse each film and explore the concept by looking at themes and film techniques.

The characters in the film Gallipoli, Frank and Archie, develop a very close friendship throughout their tough journey together. This special bond they have helps them to overcome the terrible adversity of going to war. Going to war involved the two men being away from their family and friends, being in a new environment, confronting death and learning to live according to strict rules and regulations. All of this would be very difficult for young men like Frank and Archie to overcome, were it not for the two friends close relationship. This mateship, Frank and Archie developed, is very typical of the way Australians are represented in the media. The two compete in a footrace, and as they grow closer, continue to compete in a friendly fashion, even when it means terrible danger for the 'winner.' They sacrifice to try and save each others lives on a few occasions. They are portrayed in a heroic like way, for their ability to struggle though these hardships.

Similarly, the characters in the film Ned Kelly also portray a theme of mateship. This is displayed through the relationships between the members of the gang and their families. Ned Kelly has an enormous ‘prize on his head.’ He has trust in his friends and family that they will not turn him in and because of the strong bond of mateship that they have between them, no one does, even with the large sum of money rewarded to he who turns Ned Kelly in to the police. The trust and...
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