by Tony Medley
Runtime 111 minutes.
Not for children.
First time director Kim Farrant has chosen an uninviting setting in the
unremittingly hot Australian desert to tell the story of a marriage on
the rocks which plummets into an emotional abyss when the couple’s two
children go missing.
She’s lucky to have three fine actors, Nicole Kidman, Joseph Fiennes,
and Hugo Weaving who seem to throw their all into the film, especially
Kidman who appears stark naked in one scene with full frontal nudity.
When she's clothed, rarely has she looked more beautiful.
Catherine (Kidman) and Matthew (Fiennes) have a difficult relationship,
so bad that they sleep in separate rooms. When their children go
missing, Rae (Weaving) gets involved since he is the police chief in
Nathgari, the desolate town to which they have recently moved.
The rest is a combination mystery about what happened to their children
and a psychological story of love and relationships. The story is far
too long and unrelentingly dark and depressing. I was enjoying the
acting and the mystery, but the last half hour goes overboard.