Program
Director: Warwick Thornton
2017
141 minutes

A period western when justice itself is put on trial.

Inspired by real events, Sweet Country is a period western set in 1929 in the outback Northern Territory. When Aboriginal stockman Sam (Hamilton Morris) kills white station owner Harry March (Ewen Leslie) in self-defence, Sam and his wife Lizzie (Natassia Gorey-Furber) go on the run. They are pursued across the outback, through glorious but harsh desert country. Sergeant Fletcher (Bryan Brown) leads the posse with the help of Aboriginal tracker Archie (Gibson John) and local landowners Fred Smith (Sam Neill) and Mick Kennedy (Thomas M Wright). Fletcher is desperate to capture Sam and put him on trial for murder – but Sam is an expert bushman and he has little difficulty outlasting them. Eventually, for the health of his pregnant wife, Sam decides to give himself up. He is put on trial in the courtroom of Judge Taylor (Matt Day). But will justice be served?

Festivals:
Venice, Adelaide, Toronto, London, Busan, Tokyo

Awards:

  • Venice Film Festival – Special Jury Prize
  • Toronto International Film Festival – Platform Prize
  • ImagineNATIVE Film Festival – Best Dramatic Feature
  • Adelaide Film Festival – GU Film House Audience Award
  • Asia Pacific Screen Awards – three nominations, winner Best Film
  • Luxembourg City Film Festival – Critics Award
  • Awgie Awards – Feature Film, Steven McGregor and David Tranter

Funding Partners: Screen Australia, South Australian Film Corporation, Create NSW, Screen Territory, Memento Films International and ADL Film Fest Fund.

Director Warwick Thornton
Producer Greer Simpkin, David Jowsey
Screenwriters Steven McGregor