Around the Block


Action / Drama


Uploaded By: OTTO
Downloaded 95,672 times
July 30, 2014 at 01:42 AM



Christina Ricci as Dino Chalmers
Ruby Rose as Hannah
Matt Nable as Jack Wood
808.63 MB
24.000 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 0 / 11

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by ozjosh03 2 / 10

To Miss, With Love - Downunder

This is an infuriatingly hackneyed entry in the idealistic-teacher-saves-disadvantaged-students sub-genre. It desperately wants to be hip and socially relevant, but is relentlessly and embarrassingly dull. It's a classic example of what happens when film funding bodies like Screen Australia become preoccupied with ticking all the politically correct boxes. Aboriginal content and cast. Tick. Female writer and director. Double tick. Lead character tailored for an American star (however awkwardly). Tick. Story geared to a younger demographic. Tick. But none of these elements ever comes together, and the result is a lame mish-mash that attempts to sell us Aboriginal students energised by Shakespeare, Christina Ricci battling racism and exploring her sexuality, and a morally confused criminal sub-plot that weirdly shifts the focus from the central characters. To make matters worse, the depiction of inner-Sydney's Redfern - which is given an LA ghetto makeover (complete with burnt-out cars and fires in the streets) - is dishonest and laughable to anyone who actually knows it.

Reviewed by adrossan 2 / 10

went Around the Point & Missed it Completely

I looked forward to watching an Australian film, about Australian problems, in our most-known Australian city.

What a let down.

I should have been warned by the inclusion of Cristina Ricci as a token American, who supposedly knows how to fix urban Aboriginal "at risk" (from what ?) kids' problems, laughably by teaching Hamlet.

Written and directed by Sarah Spillane, who allegedly lived for years in Redfern & is now Los Angeles based, the film meanders around very cliched subjects such as disaffected youth, a family member in prison, racial problems, and stereotypical police and teacher roles.

No depth, no great character development or logical behaviour sequencing & progression, technically lukewarm to pass-mark for lighting & sound, weak dialogue and almost no use of real-life dilemmas.

Even the title has a twee, American "did you see what we did with that double meaning in the title ?" about it. Very un-Australian, and very off-putting.

Anyone brought up on a diet of American rebellious youth movies and TV could have written this tripe, which bears little to the reality of the subject matter. Gangsta rap and hand gestures have absolutely nothing to teach Aboriginal kids, other than "violence is the answer" and separatism cures race rifts.

To round out how far the movie misses it's own point, a ridiculous lesbian scene with Australia's most useless, no-talent, celebrity lesbian, Ruby Rose, is tossed in for no apparent reason (and no sub-plot storyline introduction) and should have been left on the cutting room floor.

It has no utility and is not germane to the poorly expressed storyline.

There are enough real and important issues arising from Redfern to make several concise and insightful full-length features, and this is not one of them. It unfolds as a "US garbage morals and message" movie, superimposed on an Australian scene and for the most part ignoring Aboriginal reality.

Australia has entirely different problems between indigenous and white settlement, than American "White" and "Negro" race problems. Using a US cookie-cutter outline on an Australian problem smacks of opportunism and only serves to further differences between Aboriginal and non Aboriginal people - useless at best and dangerous at worst, creating an American style sub-culture and ghetto mindset which will only repeat, not break, the cycle of loss and alienation.

The standout acting in this film is from Mark Coles Smith, who has screen presence and a cheeky, engaging and charming smile, who could sell ice to Eskimos, and if utilised correctly will see great things for him in years to come.

Stay in Los Angeles Sarah, and write American crap over there. Don't try to parasite from the back of troubled people to a comfortable life as a movie "director".

Two stars for providing local employment. Try a LOT harder next time.

Reviewed by Gordon-11 5 / 10

A touching and engaging story

This film tells the story of two aboriginal brothers in Australia, whose lives diverges and disintegrates because of their different goals and values in life.

"Around the Block" tells a touching story of two underprivileged teenagers in a deprived neighborhood. They got involved in a turmoil that they do not need to be in, and it is up to the drama teacher to do something to help them - by engaging one of the two teenagers to act in a school play. It is an engaging and touching story, especially because it makes you yearn for an ending which is different compared to the one shown. I think the acting by the two teenagers are good, and Christina Ricci made the right choice to star in this gem. She needs to be in good films after a string of not so good ones!

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