Even if they’re only depicting stereotypes, we’ve compiled a list of the most memorable Aussie characters ever to have graced the silver screen. Or simply accepted.
1. Animal Kingdom (2010)
Animal Kingdom is at the center of the gritty Australian criminal drama. It is loosely based on the Pettingill family, who were the underworld’s overlords in Melbourne in the 1980s and were heavily involved in a variety of illegal operations. After the death of his mother, J, an outsider, is taken in by his extended family and becomes an insider.
2. Candy (2006)
This film revolves around the passionate relationship between poet Dan (played by Heath Ledger) and the colorfully named artist Candy. It was only after many failed attempts at getting clean that the two of them spiraled further and further into a terrible spiral of drug dependency. Author Luke Davies’ semi-autobiographical novel, Candy, is the inspiration for this film.
3. Crocodile Dundee (1986)
Crocodile Dundee is a nostalgic treat for children of the 1980s. Mick Dundee, a bushman from the Australian outback, falls in love with a New York journalist while he is on assignment there. On his way to the States in this romantic comedy, Dundee is awed by the people and culture he encounters, as compared to his rough-and-tumble upbringing.
4. Gallipoli (1981)
You’ll be following the narrative of two aspiring Australian sprinters who desire to join the military in order to fulfill their civic duty. For their training, they are transported to a bloody combat in Turkey’s World War One battlefields, where they serve as couriers for the enemy. Gallipoli is an important film that serves as a reminder of our shared history, even if it differs significantly from the events shown in the film.
5. Moulin Rouge! (2001)
Baz Luhrmann, the most ‘colourful’ Australian director, exposed the 21st century to the Parisian underworld of 1899. The dazzling Moulin Rouge, in the heart of the Bohemian revolution, is where a young poet falls in love with the show’s star, leading him into a deadly love triangle. Musically, it’s one of Luhrmann’s finest works.
6. Muriel’s Wedding (1994)
How ABBA-obsessed are you? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one experiencing this. Muriel’s Wedding, an Australian-French comedy-drama, revolves around the socially awkward Muriel. Her father has never allowed her to go out on dates because of her reputation as a fashion victim. She longs to find the perfect man and tie the knot in style, but her father won’t let her. She goes to Sydney in an effort to reshape her life in accordance with her desires.
7. Rabbit-Proof Fence (2002)
Emotional Rabbit-Proof Fence concerns three Aboriginal children who were removed from their families in 1931 to be trained as domestic employees by the government. These young women put their lives at danger in order to flee and return to their homeland, which is 1,500 miles away. Following a rabbit-proof fence across the continent, they come encounter a variety of personalities who are eager to assist them in their journey. This fictitious film is based on the true story of three daughters who were stolen from their homes because they were mixed-race children as part of the Stolen Generation.
8. Red Dog (2011)
Red Dog is an Australian comedy-drama about a’red’ dog’s quest to find his long-lost master. In the course of his travels, he charms the hearts of everyone he meets, finally uniting a community of strangers. It is based on the actual story of a red dog that brought a small town together in the Australian outback like no other.
9. Samson and Delilah (2009)
In a small, isolated village in the Central Australian desert, a love tale is told in the midst of poverty and addiction through a terrible but stunning depiction of life. Samson and Delilah start on a voyage of survival when catastrophe strikes. Actions speak louder than words in Samson & Delilah, which has nearly no speech throughout the entire film.
10. The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994)
In this low-budget feature film, you’ll meet three males dressed as women who are touring Australia with their act, which has been a long-running smash on stage around the world. On their way from Sydney to Alice Springs, drag queen Anthony and his cross-dressing and transgender buddies board the colorful bus named Priscilla, which has everything a road trip movie could possibly need. The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert is a must-see because of its fantastic costumes and catchy tunes.
11. The Great Gatsby (2013)
The Great Gatsby, Baz Luhrmann’s most recent picture, is based on the classic novel. To help him achieve his American goal, he moves next door to millionaire Gatsby, who invites him into a world of privilege and its concomitant dangers. Despite a mixed reception from critics, fans are drawn in by the trademark Luhrmann bedazzling and high-energy party scenes.
12. Walkabout (1971)
A geologist and his two young children set out for a picnic in the Australian outback. Having failed in his effort to shoot the teenager and six-year-old, he then turns the pistol on himself, leaving the two alone to defend themselves. There is little hope in the wilderness unless you know how to survive. An Aboriginal boy on “walkabout,” a ritual of manhood that involves living off the earth and utilizing archaic means, helps the two learn how to survive in the Australian outback.