Lights, Canberra, action: five movies set in the ACT region

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The man shooting the shotgun in the scene of Me and My Mates vs The Zombie Apocalypse

If you’ve ever wanted to see a dystopian vision of Canberra, look no further. Me and My Friends Against Zombie Apocalypse. Photograph: Me and My Friends Against Zombie Apocalypse.

Canberra is the birthplace of screen talents Mia Wasikowska and Liv Hewson, and has an impeccable track record for producing future Hollywood stars, among others.

Throw in its mountainous surroundings, government headquarters, and sprawling suburb, and it’s no wonder the bush capital has captured the attention of many filmmakers over the years.

In no particular order, here are five movies set in the ACT region that you should check out.

Snowy peaks of the Australian Alps

With the Australian Alps in the background, Tumble It is the story of winter troubles. Photograph: Pxfuel.

Somersault (2004)

“Where are you from?”

“They are all different places.”

Before feeding lines to Scarlet Johansson on set. black widow, Kate Shortland was filming Abbie Cornish and Sam Worthington on the freezing streets of Jindabyne.

It was first screened at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival, Tumble It explores themes of love, sexuality, innocence and responsibility and has become a coveted Australian indie favorite with critics around the world.

Following the story of Heidi fleeing the suburbs of Canberra for a new life in the Australian Alps, Tumble A fascinating romantic drama that will leave you stunned.

You can stream Tumble on Foxtel Now or buy or rent on Google Play, Microsoft, YouTube and Apple TV.

ACT suburban wildfires in movie 'Galore'

Plenty of The 2003 ACT uses wildfires as a symbolic backdrop for the fate of its characters. Photo: ABC.

plenty (2013)

“Ash fell and the fireplace pierced through.”

One for the young Plenty of It’s Canberra’s response to the wave of edgy high school dramas that filled cinemas in the early 2010s.

With the notorious 2003 ACT wildfires looming in the background, Billie’s character is forced to confront her deepest, most embarrassing secret: She’s in love with her best friend’s boyfriend.

Think the perks of Being a Wallflower Westfield Woden meets dining room Friday night. starring Ashleigh Cummings teenage blues Fame, and Toby Wallace, who stole the show in the critically acclaimed 2019 movie, Baby teeth, Galore It is a must-watch for all Canberra residents who want to see their high school years on the big screen.

You can stream Find plenty on SBS On Demand, or rent or buy from Google Play, Microsoft, YouTube and Apple TV.

Outside of the Supreme Court of Australia

Australian Supreme Court, here mabo reaches its climax. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

Mabo (2012)

“I’ll be fine, I’m not afraid inside.”

Originally released as a TV movie, mabo It depicts the events that led to one of Australia’s most important High Court cases. It is directed by Rachel Perkins. Redfern Now, Mysterious Path and Full Control, Mabo It is more than a retelling of history.

Intersecting between real-life images and dramatic animations, Perkins takes us on a meditative cinematic journey. If you don’t know his story by now, consider giving it an hour to get to know Eddie Mabo, the national hero.

You can rent or buy Mabo on Google Play, YouTube and Fetch.


ALSO READ: Echoes of Canberra homelessness in ‘A Showdown in Boston’


Dish (2000)

“What is he doing in the middle of a sheep meadow?”

Okay, so this is technically more like a Parkes movie than a Canberra movie, but there’s no way NASA Honeysuckle Creek Tracking Station’s supporting role in the movie. Plate will not be mentioned in this list!

Based on true events, this drama starring Sam Neill retells the story of the team of technicians who made the 1969 moon landing televised for the world to see. Filmed mostly on Forbes due to the abundance of historic buildings, Plate It’s an Aussie classic that’s real family fun.

You can stream The Dish on Netflix and Stan, or rent or buy it on Amazon, Ozflix, Fetch, Google Play and YouTube.


ALSO READ: Local filmmakers shine at Canberra Short Film Festival


Me and My Friends Against Zombie Apocalypse (2015)

“I hope no one else has to die, especially me.”

If historical reenactments aren’t your thing, perhaps a dystopian comedy-horror is faster.

Me and My Friends Against Zombie Apocalypse An example of what happens when a group of young Aussie creators get together and say, “Fill it in – let’s make our own movie.”

Made entirely possible by ScreenACT production funding, this wild adventure, shot entirely in Canberra, features comedy legends Jim Jefferies and Greg Fleet, YouTube’s famous Shooter Williamson, and even a cameo from hip-hop trio Bliss n Eso. .

Since it’s a mostly crowdfunded feature, it does feel a bit homemade, but if a bunch of zombie-fighting trades looks funny to you, you’re in for a treat.

You can rent Me and My Mates vs The Zombie Apocalypse from Ozflix and the G Store or buy it on Apple TV.


Is there anyone we missed that should make the list? Let us know in the comments.

A staunch supporter of the cinema church, Jimmy Bernasconi lives for something other than the big screen. You can catch Jimmy on The Multiplex every Wednesday morning on ABC Radio Canberra, or listen to Sacred Cinema wherever you get your podcasts.