Sons of Matthew 1949
Sons of Matthew is an extremely vivid depiction of the heroic conquest of the land by Australia’s white settlers.
Sonja Buloh returns to Hobart 20 years after leaving her violent father, Bojan. Their reunion ignites painful memories of shattered family life.
Splendid Fellows 1934
Famous Australian aviator, Sir Charles Kingsford Smith, and his famous plane, have cameo roles in this comedy adventure.
The film is charming, funny, eccentric and affectionate towards its characters, most of whom work in a run-down moccasin factory.
The Square 2008
A married man gets into deep water when he joins his girlfriend in pinching a bag of stolen cash.
Flammable nitrate film fed the fires in the spectacular bushfire finale to Ken G Hall’s The Squatter’s Daughter. The fires rapidly got out of control during filming but no one was hurt.
Gillian Armstrong’s Starstruck is an energetic rock musical comedy, with a kitsch aesthetic very much influenced by the style of early ’80s video clips.
This revealing film about prison life has a violent tone and very bad language, but this helps give it credibility.
Stone is a true rebel movie that refuses to die. It also ranks as one of the most commercially successful Australian productions of the 1970s.
Stork was important in a business sense: its success lead to the formation of Hexagon Productions, which became a major force in film.
Storm Boy 1976
Seamlessly woven into this story about one boy’s love of a pelican, are such themes as race relations, ecology, and family breakdown.
Audiences of the time loved this film’s boldness and, with its live sound effects and narration, to them it didn’t seem silent.
A Street to Die 1985
A Vietnam veteran and his wife fight for legal recognition of the damage done to him by the defoliant Agent Orange.
Strictly Ballroom 1992
Strictly Ballroom is one of the most popular Australian films ever made. The story may be nothing new but the execution is so colourful and eccentric it hardly matters.
Strike Me Lucky 1934
The Holocaust made vaudeville star Roy Rene’s Jewish caricatures unacceptable in later years, but this wasn’t the case in 1934.
A docudrama based on the memories of Wattie and Agnes Doig, a miner and his wife involved in the Gippsland coal workers’ strike of 1937.
Suburban Mayhem 2006
Katrina, played astonishingly well by Emily Barclay, controls every man in her small kingdom with an overpowering sexuality.
The Sum of Us 1994
The Sum of Us presents three generations of characters, all of whom seek the same thing – a meaningful and long-lasting partnership in love.
Summer City 1977
Best known as Mel Gibson’s first movie, Summer City is a laid-back road movie that emerges as more than just a throwaway, thanks to strong performances.
In Summerfield, the sea is a threatening presence, but the predominant danger comes from the people of the town, at least in the schoolteacher’s imagination.
Sunday Too Far Away 1975
The defining elements of a great 1970s Australian film are all here – empty, confronting landscapes, hard-drinking Aussie blokes, and a sense of 'the great Australian loneliness’.
The Sundowners 1960
The Sundowners is remarkable for the number of Australian actors it showcases. Chips Rafferty plays Quinlan, the contractor at an outback shearing station.
Welsh schoolteacher Stanley Evans takes a posting in Kookaburra Springs, a tiny outback town. He forms a children’s choir which travels to Sydney for a national competition.
The Surfer 1986
Vietnam veteran Sam Barlow uncovers a conspiracy in Surfers Paradise involving police, politicians and a Vietnamese gang.
Ambiguity is filmmaker Jane Campion’s preferred method in Sweetie, and it works superbly as a destabilised narrative because of it.
In 1933 Ruby Rose leaves her isolated home in the Tasmanian highlands to rediscover her past.
Tall Timbers 1937
The finale, in which a whole hillside of trees are felled, was shot as a miniature in the studio after repeated attempts on location.
Ten Canoes 2006
The jumping-off point for Ten Canoes was a 1930s photo of Indigenous people taken by anthropologist Donald Thomson.
This romantic comedy helped launch Cate Blanchett’s cinema career. It intercuts two stories to create a very satisfying contemplation on romantic love and commitment.
That Eye, the Sky 1994
Twelve-year-old Morton ‘Ort’ Flack lives in the outback. When Ort’s father is paralysed in an accident, a stranger named Henry arrives, offering to help.
They’re a Weird Mob 1966
An Italian sports journalist arrives in Australia to find his cousin’s new magazine for migrant Italians has folded. He soon gets a job as a builder’s labourer, learns to talk and drink like an Australian, and falls in love with an Australian girl.
Third Person Plural 1978
A look at the emotional entanglements of four Sydney friends who take a weekend boating trip.
Australia’s only postmodern vampire movie, Thirst is a highlight of the ‘Ozploitation’ films made in the late 1970s and early 80s.
The ending of this film led to allegations of plagiarism, because it was almost identical to the 1934 film, Broadway Bill.
Three Dollars 2005
Australians have decided to live in an economy and not a society’, were the words on a banner that partly inspired this film.
A Ticket in Tatts 1934
George Wallace helps a champion horse to avoid crooks and win a big race.
The Time Guardian 1987
The Time Guardian is one of the great missed opportunities of Australian cinema and symbolic of its wavering fortunes in the 1980s.
Tom White 2004
Colin Friels’s performance in the title role is one of the best of his career, and it is a key factor behind the film’s artistic success.
The Tracker 2002
A series of paintings by South Australian artist Peter Coad are used throughout The Tracker in place of visual depictions of violence.
Travelling North 1987
Casting Leo McKern was a coup because he almost never accepted roles in his place of birth once he’d become successful in England.
The Trespassers 1976
Many films reflected the sexual revolution of the 1970s but few male directors explored what women wanted from it. This one does.
Turkey Shoot 1982
Without doubt one of the most notorious Australian films ever made, Turkey Shoot has attracted both wildly positive and negative reactions over the years.
Two Hands 1999
Desperate for a swim, Jimmy (Heath Ledger) buries an envelope containing $10,000 in the sand at Bondi beach…
Uncivilised is basically an Australian Tarzan, but with an English singer, Dennis Hoey, playing the king of the jungle.
Unfinished Sky 2007
The same Dutch actor plays the lead role in this Australian remake of a Dutch film, and the original.
Vacant Possession 1994
Margot Nash’s ambitious feature debut has a strong political basis, but it’s ultimately a very personal story.
A surrogate mother’s home birth turns out more complicated than expected.
The Waiting City 2009
The marriage of an Australian couple hits a crisis point as they wait to finalise the adoption of a child in Kolkata, India.
Wake in Fright 1971
A young schoolteacher loses all his money in an outback two-up game, while en route to Sydney. In the next two days he loses a lot more – self-respect, inhibitions, almost his life.
Walk Into Paradise 1956
For the third time with director Lee Robinson, Chips Rafferty played his version of an Australian hero – rugged, self-reliant, resourceful, an unpolished rough diamond.