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Australia 1998
Directed by
Rachel Perkins
83 minutes
Rated M

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
2.5 stars


Radiance is the ambitious, but not entirely successful, first feature by Rachel Perkins (daughter of pioneering Aboriginal activist Charles Perkins) who tackles a script by Louis Nowra from his own stage play about a trio of Aboriginal sisters (played by Rachael Maza, Deborah Mailman, who won the AFI's best actress award of 1998 for her performance, and Trisha Morton-Thomas) meeting after many years in the wake of their mother's death.

Set on the Queensland coast, the characters are overdrawn and the script tends towards stridently flagellating melodramatics as it explores the genre-typical range of surpressed family secrets. Rachael Maza as the ice queen of an older sister lends a touch of grace to what would otherwise be a reunion from hell.




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