Film Review – Buckley’s Chance

The cinemas have closed down again (due to covid – groan!). But just before they closed we all went to see an Australian family movie.

Bill Nighy, that most typically English actor, tries to play an outback sheep farmer in this low budget family movie set in outback Australia. I still can’t understand why they had a British actor playing that part… But I am wandering off the point – already!

Some other people play some other parts… I really can’t remember them as they were not very memorable…

Plot

Not much to it really. Aussie guy, who had moved to the USA years ago, has died and his son and wife go off to the outback to stay with the boy’s estranged grandfather whom they have never met. It seems the boy’s father left under a cloud and never returned to Oz.

The boy does not like his grandfather but they go out for an overnight hike and camp under the stars. After an argument the boy wanders off and finds a dingo caught up in a barbed wire fence. He frees the animal and that’s how the two make a connection later in the movie.

Meanwhile the baddies are trying to buy up part of the grandfather’s sheep station for an oil company. Two of the stupidest villains turn up to burn one of the out buildings one night and the young boy foolishly gets caught up in their wagon and ends up in the middle of nowhere having to escape the clumsy bad guys. That’s when the dingo finds him and they keep each other company.

The mother and grandfather (and just about everyone else) search for him and eventually – SPOILER ALERT!!!! – find him but only with a little help from Skippy. Erm…I mean the dingo…

Bill Nighy was definitely miscast – or just not very good, depending on how you see it – although he played a man of few words so just about got away with a poor Aussie accent. The best acting came from the dingo.

Critique

It was not totally crap but it could have been better. A weak story line really but it was a PG so it was good for Dani. He hadn’t been to the cinema in a while. The main thing I wanted to see was the outback scenery and that never fails to deliver. It was filmed around Broken Hill and they even had a scene in the famous Bell’s Milk Bar that we visited our first time in Broken Hill. A lot of the open scenery is clearly in and around the Mundi Mundi area (where Mad Max 2 was filmed), another place we have visited.

Not my idea of a good film but Dani quite liked it. At least once the Dingo made an appearance. That said the animal was hardly in the movie but managed to do a cheap impersonation of Skippy at that critical point. I will give it one star (out of five) – maybe two for Dani’s sake. (One of them is for the scenery.)

I do think that if Dani was a year older he may not have enjoyed it. So it’s fair to say that it is for younger kids only.

And a plus…I did learn what “Buckley’s chance” means however. If you want to know watch the movie. Or save yourself some money and just google it!

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