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CONTACT (2009)

SYNOPSIS:
In 1964 Yuwali was 17 when her first contact with white men was filmed in Australia's Great Sandy Desert. Her mob of 20 women and children were the last aboriginal people living traditionally, without any knowledge of modern Australia. Patrol officers were sent to evacuate their desert home, ahead of rocket tests. Yuwali gives an account of being chased hundreds of kilometers to escape the 'devils' in 'rocks that move' (trucks). Now 62, she tells the story behind this unique footage.

Review by Andrew L. Urban:
The universal fear of the unknown is captured in all its raw energy - thanks to the memories of the now mature Yuwali and the existence of some images (stills and footage) from the 1964 incident at Percival lakes, WA, in which the last Aboriginals living without knowledge of the white man came into contact with clothes, cars and hats. And a Blue Streak rocket crashing down in the distance.

The 20 females were totally isolated; all the men had gone. In a strange way, Blue Streak may have saved them from extinction. The documentary is fascinating and it's crafted with great skill and care, beautifully enhanced by Antony Partos' haunting score.

The weaving together of Yuwali's memories with the images from the time, plus the overlay of interviews with the surviving whitefellas, completes a terrific document of not just of historical and social interest but a glimpse into real Aboriginal culture - and even a glimpse into the Dreamtime.

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 1
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

INSIDER BRIEFING
CONTACT (2009) (PG)
(Aust, 2009)

CAST: Documentary featuring Yuwali, Terry Long

PRODUCER: Martin Butler

DIRECTOR: Martin Butler, Bentley Dean

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Bentley Dean

EDITOR: Tania Nehme

MUSIC: Antony Partos

OTHER: Martin Butler (sound)

RUNNING TIME: 78 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Contact Films

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: Sydney: September 10, 2009







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