Bedeviled by much-publicised script wrangles (between Weir and source novelist Christopher Koch) and production difficulties (death threats to the crew on location in the Philippines), this bears too many signs of compromise betokening an at least partly US financed project. Gibson is adequate as the Aussie news journalist on assignment in the turbulent Indonesia of late 1965, teamed up romantically with the assistant to the British military attaché (Weaver), and professionally with a dwarf Chinese-Australian camera-man (actress Hunt, extraordinary as the movie's Tolstoy-quoting social conscience). Weir's steamy atmospherics often have the camera standing in for the unwelcome, uncomprehending Westerner in South East Asia to impressive effect; but the delineation of the political forces at work in the last days of Sukarno's regime is often less than clear. The result is a curiously languid affair, rather than the breathless Costa-Gavras-style thriller which was the least one might have expected from this kind of material.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Alan Sharp, David Williamson, CJ Koch, Peter Weir|
Hermino de Guzman