Sembène – The Film & Art Festival Presents
Monday, October 22nd
Based on true events, Sweet Country makes brilliant use of the Australian outback of the 1920s as the setting for a hard-hitting story that satisfies as a character study as well as a sociopolitical statement.
Set in 1929 Australia, this film follows Sam, a middle-aged Aboriginal man who works for a preacher in Australia’s Northern Territory. When Harry (a bitter war veteran) moves into a neighboring outpost, the preacher sends Sam and his family to help Harry renovate his cattle yards. But Sam’s relationship with the cruel and ill-tempered Harry quickly deteriorates, culminating in a violent shootout in which Sam kills Harry in self-defense.
“This shrewdly observed story asks another question: Is civilization possible in a nation where discrimination has such deep roots?”—Washington Post
As a result, Sam becomes a wanted criminal for the murder of a white man and is forced to flee with his wife across the deadly outback, through glorious but harsh desert country. A hunting party led by the local lawman Sergeant Fletcher is formed to track Sam down. But as the true details of the killing start to surface, the community begins to question whether justice is really being served.
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