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Phillip Noyce, 1978
Australia | Format: 35mm | 110 minutes
Director Phillip Noyce in person for January 26 screening!
Phillip Noyce followed up the auspicious Backroads with this huge leap forward in terms of scope and scale—a stirring tribute to the valor and dedication of Australian newsreel cameramen in the decade leading up to the introduction of television. Based in part on the real-life rivalry between the Australian-owned Cinesound company and American-owned Movietone (a subsidiary of 20th Century Fox), Newsfront follows brothers and newsreel competitors Len (Bill Hunter) and Frank (Gerard Kennedy) Maguire across 10 years of tumultuous Australian history that includes Communist witch hunts, the nation’s first Olympic games, and the devastating Maitland floods. Along the way, their lives and those of their employees are irrevocably altered by the events upon which they turn their cameras. Ingeniously blending real period newsreel footage with dramatic recreations decades before the likes of Forrest Gump, Noyce’s meticulously directed, beautifully acted drama (co-starring Wendy Hughes and Bryan Brown) raised the bar yet again for the new Australian cinema.
“One of the year’s best films.”
—Andrew Sarris, The Village Voice
Print courtesy of the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia’s Kodak/Atlab Collection.