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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 37.08%
Average: 11.24%
Pretty Bad: 4.49%
Total Crap: 4.49%

6 reviews, 53 user ratings

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by Greg Muskewitz

"Wild and thorny things."
4 stars

Lantana refers to a “genus of tropical shrub with small, colorful blooms that hides a dense, thorny undergrowth,” where we first see the lifeless body of a woman.

Retracing steps: a rope with a wide radius of characters weaves into a knot, that, when tied tighter, brings them 1) suspiciously, and 2) coincidentally, closer together. Something of a Wild Things, but with the kinky sex replaced with middle-aged sex (“This is not an affair, it’s a one night stand that happened twice”), and the youthful, pretty actors replaced by average schmoes. However, that does not mean Ray Lawrence’s movie loses any fun, nor does it mean that much of it is plausible. The Australian film racked up major awards at this year’s Australian Film Institute Awards. Here, I doubt Lantana would ever win anything and not because it doesn’t have stand-out qualities (vivacious and natural performances by — in order — Kerry Armstrong, Barbara Hershey, Rachael Blake, Leah Purcell and Daniela Farinacci; even Geoffrey Rush isn’t nettlesome for once), but rather since the collective “we” of the United States’ major awards would never make truly worthy choices. Make it their loss, not yours. Or ignore it like weeds sprouting from cracks in concrete.

With Vince Colosimo and Russell Dykstra.


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originally posted: 09/01/02 18:23:33
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User Comments

7/29/08 john boring, uninteresting,, predictable, thinks its more intelligent than it is. 1 stars
2/13/07 MP Bartley Excellently acted...but is there enough here to warrant a second viewing? 4 stars
11/23/05 JBH If we hadn't been confronted by Kerry Armstrong's ugly face it would have been excellent. 4 stars
5/24/05 Jim You think you know what's going on, but you don't. 5 stars
5/10/05 Hack-SAW One of the BEST Aussie' movies ever... 5 stars
1/06/05 peter More of barbara hershey in the tight sweater plzzzz! was average 3 stars
7/30/04 Daveman Barbara Hershey is awful and the film is predictably melodramatic. 2 stars
7/25/04 john bale Top acting, script, explores dark relationships in suburbia. Best Aussie film in years. 5 stars
5/25/04 Greyhound Thought provoking 4 stars
4/23/04 Dianne Caruso Lantana made me sit and think for hours afterwards.It presented relevant Aus social issues 5 stars
3/09/04 Mr_Blue 2 words: Super Deluxe! And Normally I don't like that sentimental stuff, but this: SUPER 4 stars
3/09/04 alice great movie, good acting 4 stars
10/02/03 Fluffy Ears Henkelschmidt IV Colin Friels hopelessly miscast 2 stars
10/02/03 Mopsa Very difficult and painful, but good cinema 4 stars
1/28/03 Pinkline Jones Geoff Rush would be better placed in Pantomime - CRAP! 1 stars
12/28/02 Herb Crowell A total piece of drivel. A worthless pile of shit. 2 stars
12/02/02 Gruther Unninteresting 2 stars
10/23/02 shell lyons lantana is a film that demands multiple viewings in order to grasp its nuances 5 stars
9/29/02 Peter Sherlock Very very good. An Oz classic. Authentic 5 stars
8/06/02 Monday Morning Way slow and filled with impossible coincidences. 3 stars
7/15/02 Phil M. Aficionado Well done in every respect. Startling for its insights into character and life circumstance 5 stars
6/08/02 ownerofdajoint a real headknocker......... 4 stars
6/06/02 The Bomb 69 interesting character study, solid performances, a little too coincidental though 4 stars
5/19/02 natasha very honest, very human 5 stars
5/11/02 Diamantopoulou Chrys Excellent casting and direction! 5 stars
3/23/02 naturalhealer7 Very strong performances and realistic examining of relationships. 4 stars
3/17/02 Teresa A mystery entangled in the lives of four couples. Interesting ending. 4 stars
3/04/02 bevan r clark a fucking masterpiece 5 stars
3/04/02 D. Jah-Voo Well done, but...boring! 3 stars
2/27/02 KCobain Tense, Engrossing, and powerful 5 stars
2/24/02 Pippa Funny and sobering with a twist of lust thrown in 4 stars
2/16/02 JB Not horribly entertaining, yet a true revelation of masculinity. 4 stars
2/09/02 Alex Ezander You love it 5 stars
2/08/02 Bonne I thought this movie really sucked. Sorry I wasted a good Sunday morning on it. 1 stars
2/06/02 Moe Snodgrass This film would have been okay if not for the inane music. I wanted to walk out but didn't. 3 stars
1/29/02 ona mccarthy the best film i've seen in a long time 5 stars
1/26/02 pipeman28 Excellent. Fucking Brilliant. 5 stars
1/14/02 Andrew Willams Simply brilliant ! 5 stars
1/05/02 Elizabeth Great acting, great script and (except for one) sympathetic and believable characters. 5 stars
12/22/01 Bruce Very intense and very real, one of the best movies of the year 5 stars
12/18/01 Jimbo One of the best this year 4 stars
12/17/01 Isla Like a delicious feast; YUM 5 stars
12/16/01 Janet Taylor Gripping! 4 stars
12/15/01 laaami best australian film of 2001 - perfect 5 stars
12/02/01 Glenn A masterpiece... excellent cinema here! 5 stars
11/21/01 Danny Moss engrossing, must pay attention to all of the subtle twists 5 stars
11/05/01 ^Elendil^ I'm probably too young to fully appreciate the territory it covered, but still brilliant 5 stars
11/04/01 tim meh 1 stars
10/22/01 Roxsy beautifully acted 4 stars
10/22/01 Jeremy Great acting and totally engrossing drama 5 stars
10/16/01 viking The most satisfying Australian drama since "Shine" 5 stars
10/10/01 Pierce Lanson Everyone will recognise friends and acquaintances in this best Aust. movie of the year. 5 stars
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  25-Jan-2002 (R)



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