Black and White

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Straight-ahead re-creation of a legal cause célèbre from South Australia at the fag end of the 1950s, when a half-caste worker with a travelling circus, Rupert Maxwell Stuart, was conveniently fingered for the rape and murder of a little white girl. Carlyle is the small town lawyer, a Scot, whose dogged defence was a constant irritant to the Establishment, exposing the racism and brutality of the police, and mobilising the court of public opinion with the help of a young newspaper owner named Rupert Murdoch. The treatment is TV standard, complete with competing flashbacks and Fox as explicatory mouthpiece, but Carlyle and Dance (as the Crown Prosecutor) deliver well-balanced performances, and there's mileage in the idea that this is where the old verities began to crumble.

Release details

Duration: 102 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Craig Lahiff
Screenwriter: Louis Nowra
Cast: Robert Carlyle
Kerry Fox
Charles Dance
David Ngoombujarra
Colin Friels
Ben Mendelsohn
Max Stuart
Billie Brown
John Gregg
Roy Billing
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