The epic – and I mean epic – movie starring Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman is easily two and a half hours long. You’ll faint from hunger unless you lug a giant tub of popcorn into the theater with you.
“Australia” director Baz Luhrmann calls big, sweeping dramas like his film "banquets of cinema." But “Australia” is more like a strip-mall buffet restaurant of cinema: mounds of reheated, generic glop and none of it fully satisfying. The film tries to be a drama/adventure/comedy
Still, I enjoyed it. In a world of “Saw V” and moronic computerized cartoons, I’m thankful for any movie that attempts to tell a dramatic human story – and takes right and wrong semi-seriously.
Sweeping epics are very expensive. Movie studios fear spending big money on productions that don’t appeal to their main target audience: action-hungry teens. But Susan King of the Los Angeles Times wrote an interesting piece about the appetite people still have for big, dramatic, emotional stories:
“Australia” deliberately hearkens back to the kind of filmmakers and films (think David Lean and "Lawrence of Arabia" or John Ford and "The Searchers") that gave cinema its bigger-than-life scale. The kind of epics that few directors or studios even try for anymore … .
The greatest epic of them all is the story of God’s quiet but dramatic personal entrance into human history.
The Christmas story.