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Movie Review: Tomorrow, When The War Began September 28, 2010

Posted by lisameesakasi in Movies, Reviews, Trailer.
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Can I just start by saying that this is such an amazing movie and makes me damn proud to be Australian?

I remember when I first heard about this movie. I was at school, lounging in Biology when my best friend told me that there was this Aussie war movie coming out, but it involved teenagers. I was intrigued at first, because some spark of recognition lit up in my head. Aussie war movie? Teenagers? It can’t be… So I started to quiz him. People invade Australia? There is a girl as the protagonist? There’s an Asian guy in it? ‘Yes. Yes. Yes,’ were the answers I got.

However, my questions were pretty generic. But come on, there aren’t much Asians in Aussie movies, so I was intrigued. It couldn’t possibly be the Movie version of this book I had read way back when? I remember how coincidently I had stumbled across that book. One minute I was sitting around my house doing nothing, and the next I was spending my nights reading this amazing and captivating book. Of course, it was the sequel to ‘Tomorrow, When the War Began’ called ‘The Dead of the Night’ that I had read, which was why the plot of the movie threw me off. After a second of thinking, though, I guessed that what I had read came after the movie. Now I can only remember snippets of the book, since it was like three or so years ago that I read it.

This is what I remember: protagonist girl and Asian guy get it on (I’m a teenager, these thing stick). They go to a hospital for some reason. They meet these wannabe soldiers in the forest. Protagonist girl does her hands in almost falling off a cliff. Condoms? Another couple. Someone dies, a dude, I’m sure. Someone gets shot on a bridge. A tank?

This book opened my eyes to a whole other genre of writing. I liked the whole idea of teenagers being in control, especially a girl, and the whole invasion thing. It’s influenced spawned my first ever story. It had something to do with a group of teenagers being away on a school camping trip when their town gets invaded. So maybe it was more than just an ‘influence.’ I used to write and write for hours, half on paper with different coloured pens, and half on the family computer. I was engrossed with that story. Of course, this was before I even knew the word ‘plagiarism’ existed. John Marsden’s ‘The Dead of the Night’ became an obssession of mine real quick.

Of course, when my family moved houses, I left that book behind by accident and didn’t realise until it was too late. That’s why this movie coming out just feels like fate. I just happened across the novel, and I just happened across the movie.

I went to see the movie today with my brother and cousin, just out of the sheer novelty of it all. I should’ve been studying for my HSC, but come on, this is fate we’re talking about. The whole affair was pretty shifty and we were forced into a tiny empty theatre. Only three people had come to watch it (me, my brother, and my cousin)? This movie must be real shoddy. But in the next twenty minutes or so, the entire cinema became packed with people. Even a Jacob wannabe.

The movie was simply amazing, I’m not even going to lie. It really is a milestone in Australian Film. There are these Aussies out there who suddenly decided, ‘maybe we should try to get the teenagers in on this.’ And you know what? They did! The cinema was packed with young teenagers to young adults, it was really amazing! I’ve never watched an Australian film targeted at people in my age group and actually liked it. Sure, Baz Luhrmann can make ‘Australia’ and some other guy can make ‘Priscilla, Queen of the Desert’ but in what way can I actually connect to those movies? I wasn’t around during WWII (it was WWII right?). I’m not an upper class thoroughbred Englishwoman who has to rough it in the Australian outback. And I’m not Hugh Jackman… enough said. The movies were great, sure, but could I connect?

I can connect to teenage displacement, the worth of friendships, and the distance teenagers go to to do what they tink needs to be done. I haven’t ever been involved in a war, you got me there, but the underlying themes of the movie are things I can definitely relate to. Watching the emotions of the actors on-screen was like looking back on my high school years (graduated last week). I’ve felt horror, love, hatred, need, curiosity, fear, etc. Yes, in a very different context, but somehow, still exactly the same.

It’s a downright bloody good movie, and any Aussie should be proud to watch it!

My Rating: 10/10 (it was just too good)

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