Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Summer Coda tells the story of Heidi (Rachel Taylor) who returns to Australia after being raised stateside to attend the funeral of the father she never really knew. On the way she meets a friendly orange farmer Michael (Alex Dimitriades) and his joyful employees where love and laughter brings welcome relief.
The film was set and shot in Mildura, where the landscapes and sunsets were used to great effect to compliment the romanticised life of orange picking. I get the impression that Writer and Director Richard Gray had seen and enjoyed Bertoluccis Stealing Beauty a few times. There were lovely moments in this film mainly around the orange picking crew, the humorous banter was wonderful, however I didn't really believe the love between the two leads and this caused the film to drag.
I was saw this film at one of Cinema Nova's Meet the Filmmaker events, where after the film, Richard Gray, Alex Dimitriades and actor Angus Sampson where on hand to answer questions. These events are always great as it allows for a closer look into film making process.
Overall this film is enjoyable, nothing special, but enjoyable. It also made me want to summer in Mildura and maybe that was the point.
Also one last thing, the name Heidi was a mistake as it makes me think of another independent Australian film, Somersault. And Summer Coda is not as good as that.