Starring: Vince Colosimo and Jacqueline McKenzie
Director: Peter Cattaneo
DIRECTOR Peter Cattaneo reached a career peak with the unexpected worldwide success of The Full Monty in 1997.
Now he has gone to Australia to direct the family film, Opal Dream, based on a story by Ben Rice, who also worked on the screenplay.
The setting is the opal mining town in the west of NSW, Lightning Ridge, (but filmed in what is often referred to as a moonscape desert, Coober Pedy).
While these towns are generally genial, there is an underlying brutality (seen in The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert).
Here it is directed towards “ratters”, those accused of going on to rival claims to search for opals.
However, right triumphs in the end and the townspeople have to change their attitudes.
What brings this about in the first place is the imagination of Kylie Anne Williamson, played by Sapphire Boyce.
She has imaginary playmates. However, Pobby and Dignan are completely real to her.
When her father takes her and her brother to the dig, they forget about Pobby and Dignan and have to claim they lost them.
Dad is branded a ratter by the townspeople and prosecuted.
Cattaneo has effectively not geared the film particularly towards children or the expectations of how children should react.
A group of Australian character actors round out the cast of a satisfying family film.