Out of the Blue

  • Film
0 Love It
This absorbing and moving drama-documentary outlining the tragic events that occurred in Aramoana, New Zealand on November 13-14 1990 – when loner David Gray shot dead 13 victims in the largest mass-shooting in the country’s history – may not ‘re-invent’ the genre, but the excellence of Robert Sarkies’ direction, his narrative skill, and the fruits of his sober but expressive, intimate but non-histrionic, approach give it layers of cinematic interest rarely attempted by comparable ‘event’-based dramas.

Anchoring his film in a sweetly shot, edited and suggestive portrait of place – the picture-book bays, honesty boxes and ancient school buses of South Island – and community, enables Sarkies to do justice to the plight and emotional responses of a wide range of individuals, with the witnesses, cops, victims and survivors (from elderly George Cross-winner Helen Dickson to children) given suprisingly affecting and penetrating performances by a cast of varied experience. Like the massacre itself, Sarkies’ film is tense, shocking and unexpected, but this is also rewardingly presumption-free and thoughtful.

Release details

Rated: 15
Release date: Friday March 14 2008
Duration: 100 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Robert Sarkies
Screenwriter: Bill O'Brien, Robert Sarkies, Graeme Tetley
Cast: Matthew Sunderland
Karl Urban
Lois Lawn

Average User Rating

4.4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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payattention007

Avoidance of 'hollywood' effects and hysteria only adds to this realistic portrayal of a tradegy that shook a nation. Slow paced, sympathetic and unsettling - its not an easy watch, but a very moving one. Recommened viewing - even for viewers with no prior knowledge of the actual incident.

payattention007

Avoidance of 'hollywood' effects and hysteria only adds to this realistic portrayal of a tradegy that shook a nation. Slow paced, sympathetic and unsettling - its not an easy watch, but a very moving one. Recommened viewing - even for viewers with no prior knowledge of the actual incident.