Here it is Ė and itís in widescreen, so you get the picture director Andrew
Dominik intended. Youíll want to remind yourself whatís so bloody chilling about
It begins with the disclaimer that it is not a biography as some narrative liberties have been taken. So it is perhaps not the most accurate ever made, but
considering the subject is still alive and not only approves of it, but will be heard
discussing on the DVD coming out late in 2001 for sale, it is one of the more interesting
ones, certainly as far as Australia is concerned.
The argument about this film glorifying a criminal misses the point: the film
isnít glorifying a criminal any more than a dramatisation of Hitlerís life
glorifies the Fuhrer. The role of filmmakers is not to as filters and arbiters but as
storytellers, sometimes posing questions which have no easy answers.
What I like about films like this on DVD is that after all the heat has cooled and you
can see them in the privacy of your home (in DVD quality, that is) you get a second chance
to probe the film and your own responses to it, remembering there is more to it than the
highlights or the trailer. Like the extraordinary scene in jail when Chopper is stabbed
several times by another inmate (played by Simon Lyndon). From the beginning to the end of
that scene, your lounge room will be dead quiet.
Andrew L. Urban
Published March 29, 2001