Exclusive! Behind the Scenes of Watch The Sunset

Cinema Australia Original Content:

Danny Biaro (Tristan Barr), ex-member of outlaw bikie gang, The Bloodless Brothers, is tortured by the choices of his drug-ridden past that led to the disintegration of his family.

After witnessing the brutal abuse of a young woman, Charis (Zia Zantis-Vinycomb), at his gang’s club, Danny wants out.

Longing to be reunited with ex-partner, Sally (Chelsea Zeller), and their daughter, Joey (Annabelle Williamson), he flees with Charis, travelling to the regional town of Kerang.

With gang member, Shane (Aaron Walton), his best mate, hunting him down, Danny must race against the clock before the bikie gang reaches his estranged family.

“Following some time spent with survivors of a drug fuelled life and witnessing their stories retold connected me to this project,” Tristan Barr tells Cinema Australia. “In under a month we had the first draft of the script. Centralising our story around one true event the decision was made to shoot the entire film in a single shot, allowing the shooting style to create a looming inescapable nature to this retelling of a raw truthful event.”

The following months involved an intense collaboration between cast and crew to structure the performances they were able capture all at once. Alongside the generous community of Kerang who donated themselves and their town to bring to life this story, Watch the Sunset was a project that epitomizes the possibilities when a group of passionate and generous artists and community members come together to tell a meaningful story.

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths,” says Barr. “These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion. Beautiful people do not just happen.”

“The one-shot aspect of the film was definitely the biggest challenge,” says cinematographer Damien Lipp. “The precision that was required by the whole cast and crew was a huge undertaking. There are no second chances, so it required everyone to have rehearsed the whole film almost as a dancer would rehearse their steps. The behind-the-scenes clip you are about to see here is a transition of the camera from inside one car with the characters to a seemless tracking shot following the car that leads us to a new location.

Cinema Australia reviewed Watch The Sunset last year after it premiered at the Perth Revelation Film Festival. Here’s what we said: “Stanley Kubrick once said that if it can be written, or thought, it can be filmed. Watch The Sunset is a testament to the master’s words. It’s a captivating, perfectly-executed piece of ambitious, experimental cinema. It’s a technical marvel which will inspire, while its hardcore narrative will shake you to your core.”

Watch The Sunset is currently in consideration for the AACTA awards with a general release date announced soon. You can keep up to date with the film here.

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