WEDNESDAY 15 NOVEMBER @ 7PM
Romulus My Father (2007)
Directed by actor Richard Roxburgh, Romulus My Father is the autobiographical story of 10 year old Rai Gaita and his migrant Yugoslavian parents in early 1960s country Victoria. Eric Bana plays Romulus – a good man being torn up by the pressures of raising his young son in impoverished circumstances – and by his doomed love for his estranged and disturbed ex-wife Christina. German actress Franka Potente – best known for Run Lola Run – is restless and tortured as Christina, a woman ahead of her time and place. But the film really belongs to newcomer Kodi Smit McPhee who gives us Rai with his stunning, heartbreaking feature film debut earning him the 2007 AFI Award for Best Young Actor. Kodi went on to Hollywood as a result of this performance and at 25 won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog.
This film is a slice of life character-study that’s a slow-burn. Not a lot seems to happen to begin with but this is when the strong characterisations are putting their hooks into us. By the time events turn tragic – we care enormously about what happens to this family.
It’s a downbeat movie whose upbeat message is found in what happened after the events portrayed in the film. Rai not only survived his childhood but grew up to be one of the world’s most respected moralists and Professor of Moral Philosophy at King’s College London.