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An accomplished Australian thriller that deftly fuses genres – contemporary western meets small-town detective drama – to produce an outback murder mystery with a wry, comic undertow.

Detective Jay Swan (Aaron Pedersen) returns to the remote outback town in which he grew up to solve the murder of an Indigenous teen, found in a drain under a highway. After years away in the city, Swan feels alienated from the police force, his community and his own daughter, but when he discovers there's a serial killer at large they'll all have to work together.

Award-winning director Ivan Sen (Dreamland, MIFF 2010; Toomelah, MIFF 2011) crafts a subtle commentary on the socio-political context surrounding the case, effortlessly switching tonal gears from high tension to self-deprecating comedy with ease. As scriptwriter, editor, cinematographer and director, Sen has created a stunningly distinctive film, supported by a cast that includes Hugo Weaving, Ryan Kwanten, Jack Thompson, Jack Charles, Tasma Walton and Damian Walshe-Howling.

Ivan Sen and Aaron Pedersen are guests of the festival. Join them in conversation with screenwriter Christine Olsen (Rabbit-Proof Fence) in our Talking Pictures event.

D/S Ivan Sen P David Jowsey Dist The Backlot TD DCP/2013