December 15, 2008

Aborigines stereotyped in Australia

Baz Luhrmann's Australia a disaster, says Germaine GreerOn the film's Aboriginal characters, Greer says the film's "greatest asset" is Brandon Walters, a 12-year-old Aboriginal boy who plays Nullah.

However, she describes as "unforgivable" Luhrmann's decision to have Nullah speak "in a cutesified stage version of pidgin."

Greer accuses Luhrmann of using acclaimed Aboriginal actor David Gulpilil's character King George as "a cigar-store Indian, standing on one leg, the other foot propped up against his knee, silhouetted against the skyline, spar and spear-thrower in hand."

"To the few viewers who will know that this motif has been used repeatedly as a trademark, it does seem that Luhrmann is making a tasteless joke," she said.

Greer also criticises Luhrmann for not choosing to depict how Aboriginal workers on the vast outback cattle property where the film is set would have lived in a collection of "filthy" humpies without being paid any money for their work.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Australia's "Black Fella Magic" and The Best Indian Movies.

1 comment:

Melvin Martin said...

Hmmm... Germaine Greer?

Germaine Greer is an Australian-born writer who possesses one of the most astute minds of any author I have ever read in my life.

Highly controversial on feminist matters, Greer has written extensively on a wide range of volatile social issues since the '70s.

BOTTOM LINE: If Germaine Greer feels that this movie is a crock of shit, then it's a crock of shit.