Archive of films Charlie's Country / Charlie's Country

2013, 108 min

Section: Another View
Year: 2014

Charlie is an Australian Aborigine who has abandoned the traditional life of his ancestors but never managed to adopt the values dictated to him by the white society. This captivating look at a man trying to find his natural place between two opposing cultures stands out for the exceptional performance by its lead actor.


The northern tip of the Australian continent is home to a community of Aborigines. One of them is Charlie, a man struggling in vain to find his place in the dominant white society, whose members have claimed the land for themselves and imposed laws that disrespect the traditions and natural way of life of the region’s original inhabitants. Charlie’s desire to adopt the immigrants’ appealing lifestyle soon runs up against cultural incomprehension and normative laws that have no bearing on Aborigines used to living an organic life in the outback. However, his return to the bush shows that it may be too late to resume to the free and traditional life of a hunter. Demonstrating sensitivity and great understanding, this meditation on the impact of colonialism excels for the authentic performance of David Gulpilil, whom audiences may remember from Nicolas Roeg’s 1971 classic Walkabout.

About the director

Rolf de Heer

Rolf de Heer (b.1951, Heemskerk, Netherlands) has lived in Australia since he was eight years old. He spent seven years working for ABC TV, after which he studied at the AFTRS in Sydney. Today he works as a screenwriter, director and producer. Although he has been working in film for more than 30 years, he first gained attention in 1993 with Bad Boy Bubby. The film won the Special Jury Prize at the Venice film festival. The Tracker (2001), which was shown in the Horizons section at the 2003 KVIFF, explored the issue of racism in Australia in the first half of the 20th century. Perhaps his best known film is his ballad about the life of an aboriginal tribe, Ten Canoes (2006), which won an award in the Un certain regard section at Cannes. His latest film, Charlie’s Country, was shown in the same section.


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About the film

Color, DCP

Section: Another View
Director: Rolf de Heer
Screenplay: Rolf de Heer, David Gulpilil
Dir. of Photography: Ian Jones
Music: Graham Tardif
Editor: Tania Nehme
Producer: Nils Erik Nielsen, Peter Djigirr, Rolf de Heer
Production: Vertigo Productions
Coproduction: Bula’bula Arts Aboriginal Corporation
Cast: David Gulpilil, Peter Djigirr, Luke Ford, Peter Minygululu
Contact: Visit Films

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