Australia, 1990 (MIFF 2017, Pioneering Women)

Director: Nadia Tass


Following her smash-hit directorial debut Malcolm, Nadia Tass’ next big achievement was this early Ben Mendelsohn vehicle, an award-winning, iconically Melbourne teen caper also starring Claudia Karvan and Steve Bisley.

Danny is rapt that he’s lined up a date with Joanna, but there’s one big problem: he promised he’d be rolling up to her door in a Jaguar, a car he absolutely doesn’t have. Taking the family Nissan Cedric to the car lot of dodgy salesman Gordon Farkas, Danny swings a deal for a Jag that’s too good to be true. Sure enough, when it turns out his new car is a bomb, Danny recruits his mates for an intricately plotted plan of revenge.

Written by Tass’ long-time creative partner David Parker (whose efforts won him the AFI Award for Best Screenplay), The Big Steal would be worth seeing for Bisley’s gloriously slimy costuming alone if it also wasn’t Australia’s answer to a John Hughes-esque teen comedy, complete with the first lead performance in a film from the prodigiously talented Mendelsohn.

'Simply a delight of a film … a real crowd pleaser.' – Margaret Pomeranz, The Movie Show

Director Nadia Tass and actors Claudia Karvan and Damon Herriman will attend the session to introduce the film; Tass and Karvan will then take part in a post-screening Q&A.

See also...


WHAT BETTER WAY to close the festival than with a sneak preview of a new Melbourne-produced comedy? Nadia Tass and David Parker follow Malcolm and Rikhj and Pete with The Big Steal, a wickedly funny j... More »


With Amy, Nadia Tass demonstrates the breadth of her talent as both director and producer. The quirky comic elements of her previous successes, including Malcolm and The Big Steal, are retained in Amy... More »


You've read the book, now see the film. Pooling the talents of actor/writer Ben Elton (Young Ones, Blackadder) and director Nadia Tass (Malcolm, The Big Steal), this gloriously over-the-top production... More »


Sometimes it takes a trauma to change things for the better. ... An inner-urban Melbourne family is turned upside down when their young son Jack is diagnosed with leukemia, and his father's years of i... More »


Judy Davis and Claudia Karvan star in Gillian Armstrong's award-winning beachside drama of a woman unknowingly rekindling ties with the daughter she left behind. ... Lilli (Judy Davis) is a back-up si... More »


Winning the Australian Writers Guild's award for best original film, this clear-headed, warm-hearted romance offers a vibrant, Dogs in Space-esque slice of 1980s inner-city Australian life. ... After ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director