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A recent report has found that the gold standard of Australian cinema was back when everything was slightly blue.
This study was commissioned by the film standards watchdog, Australian Registry Of Screen Enthusiasts (ARSE), in response to the growing problem of local audiences shunning local productions for the plethora of overseas content now available with the introduction of streaming services.
Over 5000 Australians were surveyed for the report, with over 60% of Australians admitting that they haven’t watched a contemporary Australian film since the 2010 crime drama Animal Kingdom.
While local period films, animations, and international co-productions remain popular as ever – the report has found that modern filmmakers are not capable of presenting modern Australians in any environment outside of the outback.
“We believe cultural cringe may be a factor here” says lead ARSE researcher, Professor Ginger Meggs.
“Australian filmmakers want to present Australia as a sun-bronzed version of San Francisco, or Notting Hall with timber verandas”
“No one wants to admit that we all have uncles who look and talk like Chopper Read. Regardless of ethnic heritage, the most interesting people in Australia are covered in tattoos and swear too much”
“And the small portion who aren’t familiar with this reality end up in film school”
The report goes onto explain that this may be the reason why none of Australia’s bizarre domestic football codes ever make it to the screen, because these mutant sports do not translate to a global audience, and the people who make films in Australia are absolutely intent on avoiding the general public who make up these ‘sportsball’ fanbases.
The professor goes on to say that the coddled film industry are detached from the current living standards of most Australians, and honestly believe that working families still live in free standing homes with quarter acre blocks.
“90% of Australians do not live the Australian Dream as presented on screen. Local filmmakers still honestly believe you can live below the poverty line in a four bedroom house”
“Australian cinema lost touch with reality when they stopped making blue tint films”
“Which is why these films are remembered as the peak of Australian cinema. Back when characters looked like the audiences, and spoke like them”
This chapter of Australian film history is remembered as ‘the true blue era’ and documented to have begun with the 1993 Melbourne skinhead thriller Romper Stomper, and lasted until the turn of the millennium – However, some film critics argue that it may have started as early as 1987’s ‘High Tide’ with Judy Davis.
“Sadly it’s pretty clear that Australian productions have been playing it safe ever since Eric Bana went to Hollywood” says the researcher.
“The rise of Asian and Indigenous cinema appears to be an antidote to the yuppiewashing of Australian storytelling… Unfortunately these productions don’t get the funding as some 2 hour glorified Qantas ad”
“But yes. Romper Stomper, Lantana, Head On, Blue Murder… It’s hard to repeat that kind of success when the entire industry lives within walking distance of the light rail”