Jack must keep moving this mob of sheep over the ‘long paddock’, as the open road is called, because the owner of the flock is still waiting for rain that refuses to come. The long paddock is part of Australian bush lore. Historically, the drover has the right to move his mob through towns and paddocks but he must keep them moving and is expected to cover six miles a day, by law.
A beautifully made sequence that shows how A Big Country so successfully brought the real outback into the homes of suburban Australia. Here we see magnificently shot, iconic images of rural life and meet a great character.
After 18 months on the road with this mob of sheep, Jack is familiar with many of their personalities, and can distinguish the leaders, the laggards and the lame of the flock. The filming is true to the character of the man, his way of life, and his laconic observations about living on the open road. The editing style effectively matches the slow pace of the sheep and the movement along the roads and byways as the mob, and the men responsible for their welfare, wait out the drought.