The highest grossing Australian film of 2011, and recently voted one of Australia’s top ten films of all time. Based on Louis de Bernières’ (Captain Corelli’s Mandolin) novella, Red Dog chronicles the real-life travels of a much-loved dog through western Australia’s Pilbara region in the 1970s.
In the newly established mining town of Dampier, there’s good money to be earned working for Hamersley Iron. Miners, steelworkers, crawler excavator drivers – workers from all over the world come to the town to toil away. When the sun goes down, these straight-talking grafters make their way to the local watering hole where they drink, reminisce and have a good old brawl.
But one particular night, things are somewhat quieter than usual. In the back room a dog is drawing its last breath. And this isn’t just any old dog – this is Red Dog, a dog everybody knows and loves and about whom everyone has a story to tell.
Opening with a shot of Dampier’s Mermaid hotel and closing with a fading view of the outback, the cinematography shows the Pilbara in all its glory. In a time when the market in family films is dominated by studio CGI blockbusters, it is a refreshing surprise to find a film that makes such beguiling work out of an idea that goes all the way back to the adventures of Lassie and Tin Tin.