2.5

Van Diemen's Land

Thriller Drama Mystery


 

The true story of Alexander Pearce, Australia's most notorious convict. In 1822, Pearce and seven fellow convicts escaped from Macquarie Harbour.

"Van Diemen's Land" plays like a horror/slasher film. The format is very simple: convicts sit by the fire hiding fears they're the next to be killed, and then proceed to walk through the forest (in the most captivating moments of the film), before one is inevitably bludgeoned to death for food. If we were able to associate more with the characters' hunger and desperation, it may have had a greater impact, but in the end it's just simple and barbaric.

Anthony Macali

MIFF 2009
104 mins