Author Topic: Spin off of a spin off - which movies form your nations collective identity?  (Read 2689 times)

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lollylegs

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What about Australia? No, I'm kidding, it's The Castle here too. Not that I really know anyone as dumb as the kerrigans, but it has a quintessential Australian sense of humor. "It's going straight to the poolroom"

Hmm, but would you really call them dumb? Unintelligent perhaps, in an academic sense, but I think they have some smarts.

To borrow from camlan, The Castle embodies so many ideas that are typically Australian.

Big things like mateship, sticking up for the underdog (like Laurie does with the Kerrigans, but also like the Kerrigans do with their elderly neighbours), being the underdog and coming out on top plus, of course, the Great Australian Dream - owning your own piece of land.

Then there's smaller things that are just a part of Aussie living - getting together with family, going on holidays (a funny 'You Know You're Australian When...' I once read said, 'You'll drive all day just to camp somewhere overnight'), the car culture ('Can you move the Camerra, I need to get to the Torana so I can move the Commodore.'  'Yeah, but I'll need the keys to the Cortina.'  'Don't hit the boat!'), multiculturalism, never ending renovations, and a million other things.

And underlying it all is this down to earth, unpretentious 'vibe' - where else but Australia would someone throw a backyard barbeque for their QC?

squashedfrog

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England here.  I know one that certainly doesn't.  Four Weddings and a dingdangity Funeral.  >:(

Bethalize

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England here.  I know one that certainly doesn't.  Four Weddings and a dingdangity Funeral.  >:(

*cough* Depends on who you are and who you know. I don't know any aristocracy but other than that it was fairly spot on IME. My wedding was just like the first one in 4WAAF in many ways. Pink, blue, white and green flowers, 1 Corinthians 13, Jerusalem. No funny folk duet though.

squashedfrog

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We had Corinthians 13, Jerusalem at our wedding.  Yup thats pretty standard at English weddings.

Its very much a personal thing as to why I don't like that film. The thing I didn't like about it was the expectation from a few people that went to my university from outside the UK after seeing that film and waaaay to much Merchant Ivory  was that a) we all live the "gentry"/upper middle class life, went to private schools and the men are all bumbling adorable foppish types like Hugh Grant, and that housing was either posh London flats or village style prettiness. 

I think it was a bit of a shock to those who were expecting to meet Hugh Grant's, and actually met football mad, lager swilling lads, or that terraced housing is actually quite the norm over here.  And if you are a student in the UK its expensive, you work, eat beans, and maybe try and get a bit of extra work doing (shock horror!) bar work or even stacking shelves, not driving around in a vintage Beetle or punting along a river.

As one girl who spent most of her time on the phone complaining to her parents put it.  "they really live all cramped up with cr*ppy yards and their washing hanging out.  Its like how the gypsies live in our country!"   >:(

Four Weddings gets the blame for me because that was the film she in particular kept saying "I was really hoping it was going to be more like FWAAF, but ....."  Thank god she went home after the first year!

bigozzy

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I mentioned The Castle in the Hard to Explain Businesses thread, which lead to several posters quoting from the movie. This happens rather frequently over here.  The Castle is, in my opinion, one of the most faithful representations of Australian life - sure it's over the top, and it doesn't represent every facet of Australian living, but it's incredibly Australian at it's core.  I think every Aussie knows a Darryl Kerrigan.

What movies do you think provide a fairly accurate depcition of life in your country?  And also, which movies fail dismally? (*cough*Crocodile Dundee*cough*)

ETA And part of the reason I started this thread is so we could keep quoting The Castle. "We're goin to Bonnie Doon!"

While I love, love this movie because it is a scarily accurate description of my family (Darryl is pretty much my dad) I think it only represents one sub-culture out of the multiple facets of a complex national culture. There are many other 'Australians' that do not fit this stereotype.

Does not stop me identifying with that particular sub-culture though!!

Muriel's Wedding is another!

MERUNCC13

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This is a very interesting question.  It's also very difficult to address because Mr. Thipu and I can't figure out a film that would define the USA. 

We both agree that Ken Burns is wonderful at this sort of thing but his documentaries are presented in the form of a series.  His work gives a good feeling of the Anerican experience but you can't get it all at once.  Like the USA itself, things have to be taken one step at a time and one film can't get it all.

I agree Ken Burns documentary but I would add the shows by Rick Sebak he has done shorter quirky documentaries on things like hot dog shops, A Cemetery Special, Ice cream parlors, Sandwiches across the nation, and great old amusement parks.

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0780904/

Yeah, America would be a hard one because you've got a lot of different cultures and lifestyles over there. Doesn't necessarily have to sum up the entire country (sorry, should have been more clear about that in the OP), more your experience of life in your country, e.g. if you live in a small town and compete in pageants you might say Drop Dead Gorgeous.

Thanks for the tip kherbert05, Rick Sebak looks really interesting.

I agree with the Sebak reference - I look forward to anytime they are in re-runs on my PBS station.

Also, I agree with several others that one film cannot easily form our nation's collective identity.  Because I can also include Sargent York (currently studying WWI in class), Young Abe Lincoln, Fail Safe, The Fighting 69th, Yankee Doodle Dandy, Sommersby, Gettysburg...and the list goes on and on...
« Last Edit: March 22, 2012, 01:31:58 PM by MERUNCC13 »
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