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Overall Rating
4.33

Awesome61.79%
Worth A Look: 19.51%
Average: 13.01%
Pretty Bad: 0.81%
Total Crap: 4.88%

8 reviews, 75 user ratings


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Chopper
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by Stephen Groenewegen

"Towering"
4 stars

Chopper is a dramatisation of several key events in the life of Mark "Chopper" Read, Australian standover man turned best-selling author. Writer/director Andrew Dominik presents us with some colourful episodes from Chopper's life - presumably taken from his books. The first part of the film takes place in Pentridge prison in 1978; the second, in 1986, sees him picking up his life outside - and tying up loose ends from his prison days.

The film is really a string of violent incidents, but what binds it together is Eric Bana, who shoots, stabs, punches and hacks his way through the film in a towering performance as Chopper. The physical transformation - the capped teeth, the tattoos, the slabs of weight he gained and lost - are striking enough, but Bana gives us both sides of Chopper Read - criminal and storyteller. He has a marvellous expressive voice and you can't take your eyes off him. The film is hypnotically compelling, thanks to Bana, who's in virtually every scene. He pulls off a tricky feat - making Chopper charismatic, without being likeable - so the film isn't condoning Chopper or his actions. Amazingly, this is Bana's first leading role in a film (he had a supporting part in The Castle) but he's well-known to Australian TV audiences from sketch comedy and a short stint as a talk-show host.

Dominik mixes in some diverting story-telling tecnhiques - varying the lighting, altering the speed and texture of the images, even retelling a short sequence with rhyming couplets. It's good to see a new film-maker trying different things, but these touches sometimes stand out or feel gimmicky since the rest of the film plays in a conventional manner.

It's left to Bana to render forgettable the minor flaws in this film. It's worth stressing that the film is very violent, with its fair share of black humour (Bana puts his stand-up comic experience to good use). David Field, Vince Colosimo, Simon Lyndon, Kenny Graham and an hilarious Skye Wansey (as Loughnan's fiancee) also turn in memorable performances.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=4357&reviewer=104
originally posted: 08/04/00 13:45:19
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For more in the Australian series, click here.

User Comments

9/14/17 morris campbell A good portrait Bana is excellent 4 stars
5/22/16 LETSDANCEMUSIC R.I.P CHOPPER 5 stars
3/14/07 leah dat shit was mean 5 stars
8/07/06 ERIN SWEENEY A new classic,it is now on my favorite and must have list 5 stars
7/03/06 Reklc Just say Chopp, Chopp and you got a great flick. 5 stars
6/30/05 Janek Who says crime doesnt pay!! 5 stars
5/11/05 Nick You yanks cannot understand your own pathetic country. Give up and eat another big mac. 5 stars
11/01/04 tom butler fucken ace 5 stars
10/20/04 peter brown fu**ing wild. brilliant film 5 stars
3/23/04 jane absolutely brilliant... 5 stars
3/01/04 michael scott never let the truth get in the way of a good yarn eh. 5 stars
2/04/04 JANINE E DICKMAN HES MY HERO 5 stars
1/08/04 james s awsome 5 stars
1/07/04 Rajneesh Chopra Intakhab IV Dad! 5 stars
12/30/03 tony why isnt there a chopper 2/ 1 was excellant 5 stars
10/16/03 Beck It was absolutley fantastic - Eric Bana Rocks 5 stars
10/12/03 dale auty bloody excellent 5 stars
8/28/03 melissa Best Eva Chop Chop is the best -run for prime-minister 5 stars
8/15/03 Drew Cady best movie ever 5 stars
7/26/03 bill jones great 4 stars
7/03/03 Tim Seed I absolutely agree with Chris Parry 5 stars
6/29/03 fran drescher i played with myself because itwas that good 5 stars
6/26/03 terry a stringer the world would be a safer place with people like him 5 stars
6/23/03 karen mcdonald brilliant but wheres the other stuff they left out ? 4 stars
4/25/03 mr. Pink Tried to be hip very hard. Too much style, not much substance. Bana was OK 2 stars
4/10/03 Melinda Coady The Govt wanted his $ from this film so Chopper donated it to Child.Hospital. On ya Chopper 5 stars
4/03/03 ohyeah fricken awesome. GIVE ME MORE 5 stars
3/05/03 @#$%^&*!@ I LOVE CHOPPER 5 stars
2/11/03 adam rodwell more,more 5 stars
11/15/02 j.watson shit hot 5 stars
11/12/02 Amber Grassam Great film. Shame alot of things that went on were left out 4 stars
8/02/02 beau mather absolutely fucking wickedly brutally excellent!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
5/25/02 larry get part two rolling 5 stars
4/02/02 The Bomb 69 interesting storyline but the movie was all over the place, how did he get away with this?? 3 stars
2/16/02 Belinda Jane Chopper let us see the Chopper he wants us to think he is...... 4 stars
1/28/02 Denise Xerri fucking brilliant 5 stars
1/17/02 Davin Boscence Just Bloody Terrific!!! 5 stars
1/13/02 Peter Stisnijovski A movie that you can't sleep thru it (ENJOYED IT and it was funny, but real) 5 stars
12/15/01 denis jared one of the best moves ive seen and the books a must 5 stars
11/25/01 Karl Kissick Greatest Film i've seen in a long time!! 5 stars
11/01/01 Choppers_Girl_Fan The best movie ever 5 stars
10/14/01 Angela Davis the best filck I've ever seen. 10out of 10 5 stars
10/02/01 stephen dilworth excellent 5 stars
9/16/01 renee white i love chopper he is the best 5 stars
8/16/01 anthony west very good 5 stars
5/12/01 The King Great movie, definately worth the money 4 stars
5/07/01 fleakitty charismatic rogue or sociopathic demon? eric bana(na)'s perfect as always. talented man! 5 stars
4/30/01 Mike A none too shabby 5 stars
4/22/01 ricky whitfort very funny movie not far from the truth 4 stars
4/18/01 Robbo Very good 4 stars
4/10/01 Pweter Harshly realistic, incrediable character, unquie 5 stars
4/01/01 wade "bucketbongbouncer" macdonald its tha fuckin best movie 5 stars
3/31/01 fred a bit eerie!!!! 5 stars
2/25/01 Wade Barry like him or not ... absolutley AMAZING ! look at the awards...enuff said 5 stars
2/09/01 hum very well crafted film. be warned, it is as unpleasant as it should be 4 stars
1/30/01 Rubber Fucking Great!!! 5 stars
1/08/01 Jeff Best movie of the year 5 stars
10/12/00 m larsen loved it!!!! 5 stars
9/26/00 Lolita Martinez It was bloody phenomenal!!!!! 5 stars
8/27/00 Timbo Great but the violence made me wince. Fascinating characters, strong acting 4 stars
8/23/00 Geoff Stewart Didn't glorify just lacked any point, do I really give a shit about Chopper Read? 3 stars
8/21/00 Gribbles bloody fantastic mate 5 stars
8/17/00 justin athanitis it is the best movie that i have ever had the pleasure of being able to watch. excelent. 5 stars
8/17/00 neil bartlett an awesome performance from Eric Bana 4 stars
8/15/00 Mick Edwards Eric Bana - Russell Crowe watch out!!! 5 stars
8/14/00 K. Johnson Rather good 5 stars
8/13/00 Belinda And.........the AFI goes to "Eric Bana" 4 stars
8/12/00 ashley james kennedy i have seen it once and plan togo back (still a very good move 5 stars
8/11/00 Nick Excellent 5 stars
8/09/00 Scot Tindall an underdeveloped character study 3 stars
8/07/00 Viling Stop glorifying psychos !!!! 3 stars
8/05/00 ashley james kennedy very good 5 stars
8/04/00 matthew smith the best Australian film in many years, confronting and very funny. 5 stars
7/31/00 filmnet cutting edge filmaking that even chris parry might like! 5 stars
7/23/00 TIGGER Whoa! Soooo cool! I have seen it 5 times and I will see it more! 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  11-Apr-2001 (R)
  DVD: 13-Nov-2001

UK
  N/A

Australia
  03-Aug-2000 (R)


Directed by
  Andrew Dominik

Written by
  Andrew Dominik

Cast
  Eric Bana
  Simon Lyndon
  Daniel Wyllie
  Vince Colosimo
  David Field
  Bill Young



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