Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

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Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby MikLosk » Tue Oct 10, 2006 9:55 am

This early film of 30 years old australian Peter Weir (later he moved to the USA) belongs to the handful of the most enigmatic and incredibly beautiful movies in cinema history. It expresses on the intuitive, almost unconscious level something that could be considered as magic nature of cinema. Of course, you can treat Weir's film as a mysterious intellectual detective with very delicate athmosphere and exquisite artistic performance. Besides, the film is based on the real paradoxical accident that took place in Australia 75 years before the film was made. The accident remained unexplained and gave rise to many controversial explanations.

Three students of a female college and their teacher disappeared during the summer walk near the famous Hanging Rock - marvellous rest place. Everything happened obtained metaphysical features: something horrible and incomprehensible happened on St. Valentine's Day. But placatory nature still "is in the dark" and stais in the rest, striking with innocent beauty. However, accumulating anxiety relaxes in thunderstorm, and then - stunning silence, and the world becomes much more inconceivable, its origin, entity - much more subtle and imperceptible.

This film is an amazing cinema poem, triumph of the impressionist style with delicate and soft play of light and shadows. The mystery is in the air. With the people of the beginning of the XX century we're scared with obscure future that hangs over us like a dark strom-cloud. 10/10
MikLosk
 


Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby A » Sun Oct 15, 2006 8:40 pm

I have the director's cut on VCD, but it's still in my to watch pile. I'll try to come back to this when I see it.
But Weir is a masterful director who also made some very good film later in his career.

My favorite of his is Fearless (1993) with the great Jeff Bridges. And I'd also urge you to see Galipoli (1981) and The Year of Living Dangerously (1982), both with a young Mel Gibson. His american films tend to be a bit uneven, like Dead Poets Society (1989) or The Truman Show (199 , but he also made more interesting efforts like Witness (1985), or his most recent Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003).
Actually, one of my favorite directors.
A
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby trevor826 » Sun Oct 15, 2006 11:10 pm

Some excellent films under his belt and almost certainly two of the best performances from Harrison Ford, (Witness and Mosquito Coast), Master & Commander was a wonderful cinematic experience and is sadly underrated, there are quite a few other gems as well as A has pointed out. Picnic at Hanging Rock is still one of those films that I savour seeing again and again, incredibly atmospheric with a dreamlike quality, hopefully there'll be many more films to enjoy down the years from Peter Weir.

Cheers Trev.
trevor826
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby wpqx » Mon Oct 16, 2006 12:48 am

I thought Master and Commander was overrated, but I generally have an unexplainable prejudice to films set on water. Of his films I've seen, I'd most recommend Gallipoli, and then probably The Last Wave, the latter of which being the closest stylistically to Picnic at Hanging Rock.
wpqx
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby trevor826 » Mon Oct 16, 2006 2:16 pm

The atmospherics of Master and Commander were perfect, the groans and creaks really brought the ship to life. The only thing that could have improved it would have been if the theatre had swayed in rythm to the sea. Sure there was nothing truly outstanding about the story but it is the only film I can remember where it was difficult to differentiate between the set, the model work and most surprisingly for me, the computer generated effects. Brilliant use of background music as well, particularly during the storm section.

Far better than any other seafaring adventure that I can think of.

Cheers Trev.
trevor826
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby wpqx » Mon Oct 16, 2006 3:58 pm

I'll take the Black Swan any day, not to say its a better film, but Maureen O'hara makes it so.
wpqx
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby A » Tue Oct 17, 2006 12:13 am

Well I thought Master and Commander was a bit overrated when it was released, because it was hailed for many wrong reasons imo. But that's usually what hype and the propaganda machinery of Hollywood do to films.
But after the hype died down, I think it got underrated and remains at this.
I'd probably agree with Trevor. This is also the best film at sea I have seen. And contrary to wpqx, I'm a sucker for movies at sea
I also love this kind of movies where nothing much happens plot-wise and you get to observe the interactions of people. A bit like Rohmer.
A
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby MikLosk » Mon Nov 06, 2006 2:31 pm

Master and Commander is an excellent movie. Brilliant screenlay, editing, use of camera - everything is excellent. Really captivating adventure movie, undoubtedly the best in its genre in 2000's.
MikLosk
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby gratefultiger » Mon Jan 08, 2007 12:42 am

If u think Picnic at Hanging Rock is good which it is.
Try "Chant Of Jimmie Blacksmith" to my mind the greatest film from down-under also "Wake in Fright"AKA "Outback" vastly underrated both of them,i have visited Hanging Rock a few times as a mate lives near there,it is mysterious when the fog rolls in,a new print of "Blacksmith"has been found by a fellow Aussie in the USA (it was destined to be destroyed,before this guy moved in &took the bull by the horns Oz style) so i can't wait for the DVD as my copy is VHS only.
Cheers Chas
gratefultiger
 

Re: Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, Australia, 1975)

Postby wpqx » Mon Jan 08, 2007 1:32 am

The US knows about this film primarily through reputation only, which infuriates me to no end. I've been waiting years to see it, and it is pretty much completely unavailable in this country.
wpqx
 

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