Hyperactive crime caper from Down Under
OPENS JUNE 6, CERT 18, 97 MINS
A frenetic Aussie Lock, Stock… from David Caesar, who made Idiot Box and Mullet, this would’ve benefited greatly from pausing for breath once or twice. He’s trying to do too much, cram too many characters and twists in, so we don’t get to give a four-X about any of them. Like AC/DC’s title song, it’s highly invigorating for a minute or two, then just wearisome.
Sydney, 1969, and top local crook Barry (Bryan Brown) has it all?clubs, casinos, wife Toni Collette, mistress, subservient crooked cop Sam Neill. The Chicago Mafia send two envoys (John Goodman, Felix Williamson) to either buy him out or take him out. They assume it’ll be a cakewalk, but Barry’s a tough nut to crack. Even when his pizza-loving Vietnam Vet nephew’s muscling in on his mistress, and the missus is giving him grief.
If ever you’re putting together a space capsule and need to send up a nugget of stereotypical (obsolete) Aussie bloke-ishness, look no further. Caesar tries a few tricks?tracing the bullet’s-eye-view, for example?but they’re incongruous and flip. Lively, but boorish.