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The world has been given its first look at The Flood – an intriguing new Australian film from writer and director Victoria Wharfe McIntyre that just had its world premiere at the Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival.
Described by Vision Splendid as being an explosive blend of Tarantino and The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, The Flood follows Jarah (Alexis Lane) as she embarks on a brutal journey of retribution and revenge following the loss of her husband, child, her land and her innocence.
Victoria Wharfe McIntyre describes The Flood as an elemental film, shot mostly outdoors in the subtropical rainforest of south coast NSW – Yuin country.
“It was very important to me to capture the wildness and rawness of the natural world and our nation’s history,” Victoria told Cinema Australia. “The film is infused with spirit and there are many exceptional tales around the shoot. We broke the worst drought on record making The Flood, and on the night we screened in Winton the outback desert town that survives on aquifers was hit with flooding rains – the red carpet was ankle deep in water as we made our way into the theatre.”
The theatre has no roof and the rain kindly stopped for the film to run during an incredible lightening show. There is a strong lightening motif in the film and the celluloid lightening was boosted by actual lightening on the night.
“It felt like nature was birthing the film into the world – quite an incredible experience,” said Victoria.
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According to the filmmaker, The Flood is a multilayered rollercoaster ride that stands up to repeat viewing to pick up on the subtext that plays out in every scene.
“Ultimately it is about redemption, on a personal, relational and societal level,” says Victoria. “It looks at the truth of our past as a colonised nation using a particular kind of stylisation to allow for digestion of the terrible acts we humans can commit. Only by looking at the truth of our past and owning it can we move forward together in reconciliation and peace – this is true in life as much as it is in the film.”
Victoria hopes audiences experience an engaging, absorbing and entertaining ride despite the film being confronting and shocking which may explain the resistance from Australian film festivals to screen the film.
“It’s pretty full on, but it’s also lyrical and sweet and darkly humorous. People can be uncomfortable with the truth,” says Victoria.
As well as Alexis Lane, The Flood also stars Shaka Cook, Dean Kyrwood, Dalara Williams, Karen Garnsey, Peter McAllum, Simone Landers and Aaron Jeffery.
The Flood’s distributor Madman Entertainment are yet to announce a release date for the film, but AACTA members can catch the film now via AACTA TV.