An intense look at the latest cinematic story of the notorious Ned Kelly. After many adaptations of Kelly and his gang’s tale, Justin Kurzel’s might just be the gamechanger.
In 1880, a gang of bushrangers — including the infamous Ned Kelly ‚ attempted to ambush a police train in demand for justice for Australia’s rural poor, which led to Kelly’s death by hanging. From being perceived as an outlaw to national hero in only decades, Kelly and his gang’s story have since been manifested in multiple cinematic adaptations, its earliest one dating back to 1906. Kelly has been played by numerous names, like football player Bob Chitty, musician Mick Jagger, and Heath Ledger, but this time around, George MacKay of The Boys Are Back takes the stage in Justin Kurzel’s take on the gang of outlaws.
From the recent trailer, the new film doesn’t seem to just tell the story of the Kelly gang; it’s also a take on toxic masculinity and the legacy of violence, according to Junkee. As Kurzel directed thrillers Snowtown and Macbeth, it looks like that same tense moodiness that amplifies the senselessness and bold defiance of violence emanates throughout the film’s atmosphere. Mad Max: Fury Road’s Nicholas Hoult joins the cast as villain Constable Fitzpatrick, followed by fellow co-stars Essie Davis, Charlie Hunnam, and Russell Crowe.
Premiering as a Gala presentation back in September of 2019 at Toronto, the film has also screened at the Sao Paulo Mostra International in Brazil as well as Italy’s Torino Film Festival, and is based on the Peter Cary award-winning novel of the same name. The film’s script, written by Shaun Grant, won the Australian Writers’ Guild for best adaptation.
True History of the Kelly Gang will be available in Australian cinemas starting January 9, 2020, and in the UK and Ireland on February 28. (Text Jordinna Joaquin)