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Lord of the Bush (1990)


The documentary is about Lord Alistair McAlpine, bon vivant, patron of the arts and author. After falling in love with the Broome region in Western Australia in the 1980s, he invested heavily in the Cable Beach Club and donated money to the improvement of Broome. He is a Conservative Party member in England. The documentary interviews McAlpine in Broome and the UK, and talks to the local people about his influence on the town.

Curator’s notes

This is an early film by Zubrycki, one of Australia’s most prolific documentary makers. Through the complex character of McAlpine, he is able to show the issues confronting the then rapidly expanding town of Broome, particularly the conflict between the ambitions of developers and the sometimes conflicting desires of local communities. He is also able to look at Broome’s rich cultural heritage, including characters like Jimmy Chi, author of Bran Nue Dae and well-known musician Steve Pigram.

Tom Zubrycki’s other credits include, Molly and Mobarak, The Diplomat, Exile in Sarajevo, Billal and The Secret Safari.