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Beneath clouds

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Lena (Dannielle Hall) has an absent Irish father she longs to see and an Aboriginal mother she finds disgusting. When she breaks away, she meets up with petty crim Vaughn (Damien Pitt) who's just escaped from low security prison to reluctantly visit his dying mother. Blonde and light skinned, Lena is remains in denial about her Aboriginal heritage; Vaughn is an angry young man with a grudge against all whites. An uneasy relationship begins to form as they hit the road heading to Sydney, taking them on a journey that's as emotional as it is physical, as revealing as it is desperate.

Theatrical propaganda posters

Beneath clouds image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film Australia Australian drama aborigine crime road trip abuse

Persons of interest

  • Dannielle Hall .... Lena
  • Damien Pitt .... Vaughn
  • Jenna Lee Connors .... Ty
  • Simon Swan .... Jimmy
  • Mundurra Weldon .... Liam
  • Athol French .... Kevy
  • Judy Duncan .... Jen
  • Kevin Pitt .... Smiley
  • Tristan Bancks .... Dean
  • Ivan Sen .... Screenwriter
  • Ivan Sen .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Wow. Beneath clouds is a measured drama about two young people finding out just how much they have to lose. the tempo is (deliberately) set at the pace of a teenager walking down an endless road: it slows you down and makes you think, just as the characters have too much time to think about their miseries. If all you want from your cinema experience is colour and movement - and lots of it - then this is not the film for you; you'll just get bored and wander off to get something to eat. If you want films that have heart and soul then Beneath clouds is meat and potatoes.

Dannielle Hall and Damien Pitt have a dynamism both apart and together that will keep your eyes super-glued to the screen. They are to Mandy Moore and Shane West (A walk to remember) as chilli con carne is to rissoles. They present Ivan Sen's script as if it were a documentary and not a drama. That is way cool.

There is, along the way, an issue that is not just about Aboriginal Australians and their descendants, it is also about young people and the way they react to their parents (ie stupid old farts). There are many old timers who blame the problems of the world on the youth of today but it should be remembered that youngsters were taught by their parents, who were taught by their parents, leaving the blame for today's society right where it belongs: in the hands of the old folks who stuffed everything up for everyone. Lena and Vaughn are stuck with the cards that they were dealt, from a deck that was shuffled by parents more interested in themselves than their offspring. (It makes a mockery of Little Johnny Howard's claim that every child should have a male and a female parent, doesn't it?) that the youths can claim any sort of victory over their circumstances (and it's not a big one by any means) is a triumph indeed.

You should make time to see Beneath clouds not just for its social value and not just for the fine performances but for the effect that the story will have on your conscience.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Stereo
  • Languages: English
  • Picture: Letterbox Widescreen

Security censorship classification

M (Medium level coarse language, medium level violence, adult themes)

Surveillance time

84 minutes (1:24 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 23 May 2002
DVD rental: 4 December 2002
VHS rental: 4 December 2002
DVD retail: 12 April 2003

Cinema surveillance images

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