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He died with a felafel in his hand

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Movie propaganda

Some people will do anything to get out of paying the rent...

In He died with a felafel in his hand, Danny (Noah Taylor) is on a search for love, fulfilment and the meaning of existence. He lives with his best friend, Sam (Emily Hamilton), in a sequence of shared housing nightmares across the three major east coast Australian cities. In the tropical, testosterone-riddled environment of Brisbane, Danny attempts to save himself by writing the ultimate existential novel. The arrival of Anya (Romane Bohringer), however, blows away his creative ambitions, his life and his home.

Danny finds himself pursued in Melbourne by a collection of drop-kick followers who initiate the discovery that in the state of Victoria, the police have a tendency to shoot to kill. He escapes to Sydney and comes up hard against a major credit card scam and "the hetero-fascist sterility conspiracy" in a gay sub-culture meets the Melrose Place life-style conundrum that finally points the way to Danny's salvation. Meanwhile, Danny, Sam and Anya become enmeshed in a love triangle, seemingly doomed to chase each other through hell in a unrequited daisy chain of desire...

Persons of interest

  • Noah Taylor .... Danny
  • Emily Hamilton .... Sam
  • Romane Bohringer .... Anya
  • Alex Menglet .... Taylor
  • Brett Stewart .... Flip
  • Damian Walshe-Howling .... Milo
  • Torquil Neilson .... Otis
  • Sophie Lee .... Nina
  • Francis McMahon .... Dirk
  • John Birmingham .... Author
  • Richard Lowenstein .... Screenwriter
  • Richard Lowenstein .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

It died with a felafel in its mouth.

John Birmingham's book is the seminal X-generation flatting experience. As a seminal X-generation flatter, I can tell you that the book is more accurate than the Yellow Pages. Every character is a character out of life. This might not be surprising to you because the novel is an observation on life, but it is a surprise to Richard, who ripped the guts out of the story and put what was left over into his film. There are punch lines galore but without the setups. They are as informative as a bunch of photographs in a shoe box, which is to say, not at all, unless you were there.

Noah Taylor's angstful loser is good but not good enough to carry a script that reads like the graffiti on the back of a public toilet door (men's). At 107 minutes (shorter than a made for TV movie of the week), He died with a felafel in his hand is 37 minutes too short.

If you read the book and loved every page then give this film the flick: it'll be a profound disappointment. If you've always meant to read the book but never got around to it, see the film, it'll inspire you to find out what really happened.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Languages: English
  • Picture: widescren 16:9 enhanced
  • Subtitles: English
  • Trailers: Theatrical

Security censorship classification

MA 15+ (Medium level coarse language, adult themes)

Surveillance time

103 minutes (1:43 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 30 August 2001
DVD rental: 20 February 2002
DVD retail: 20 February 2002
VHS rental: 20 February 2002

Cinema surveillance images

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