Deliberately confronting ignorance and racism head on, Down Under is a provocative black comedy from writer-director Abe Forsythe (Ned). In the aftermath of the Cronulla riots, two carloads of hotheads collide as their misguided intent gives way to farcical ineptitude. A hilarious yet poignant story of stupidity, fear and kebab-cravings unfolds as what was meant to be a retaliatory mission turns into something neither side could have imagined.
The day after the riots, easy going stoner Shit-Stick (Alexander England) is planning a chill weekend with his cousin Evan (Christopher Bunton) but his 'boofhead' mate Jason (Damon Herriman) has other ideas. Meanwhile across the Cronulla Shire, Hassim (Lincoln Younes) is trying to concentrate on his studies, forget that his brother has been missing since the riots and ignore the inflammatory ‘search party’ goading from his childhood friend Nick (Rahel Romahn). As good ideas give way to bad, both groups are pulled into a driftnet of lunacy where one hilariously bad idea follows another.
For his sophomore film, actor-turned-director, Abe Forsythe wanted to create a film where the humour “comes from a place of truth. In a lot of cases the truth is ugly, but it is only reflecting what is going on with us as a nation”.
A decade after the Cronulla Riots, Australia continues to debate the role that racism and tribalism play in shaping our society. For Forsythe, “there’s nothing more satisfying that getting people to laugh at something they feel like they shouldn’t be laughing at. There’s no better way of saying something meaningful than under the guise of comedy”.
Please note: Due to unforeseen circumstances, the Q&A will not be going ahead. The film will still screen as advertised. Apologies for any inconvenience.